Susan Collins Gambles With the Future of Roe v. Wade

Susan Collins Gambles With the Future of Roe v. Wade
AP Photo/Alex Brandon

In a long speech on the Senate floor Friday afternoon, Senator Susan Collins said she believes that Brett Kavanaugh would not vote to overturn Roe v. Wadeand subsequent cases that have reaffirmed it, if such an opportunity were to come before him on the Supreme Court. The Maine Republican has been closely watched as a potential swing voter, largely because she supports abortion rights: In July, she told CNN that she would not support a nominee who “demonstrated hostility” to Roe v. Wade, the decision that established the constitutional right to abortion.

When she spoke privately with Kavanaugh, she said in her floor speech, he assured her that “decisions become part of our legal framework with the passage of time, and that honoring precedent is essential to maintaining public confidence.” The senator may truly believe that a Justice Kavanaugh would not vote to abridge abortion rights, or she may be covering her bases with her largely pro-choice constituency in Maine. But her bet on Kavanaugh will almost surely be tested in short order as advocacy groups continue to push abortion-related cases toward the high court.  

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