Maine Sen. Susan Collins said Wednesday she will vote to confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, giving Democrats at least one Republican vote and all but assuring that Jackson will become the first Black woman on the Supreme Court.
Collins said in a statement that she met with Jackson a second time after four days of hearings last week and decided that “she possesses the experience, qualifications, and integrity to serve as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court.”
“I will, therefore, vote to confirm her to this position,” Collins said.
Collins was one of a few Republicans to support Jackson’s lower court nomination last year, and she criticized the partisan approach to Supreme Court nominations in her statement:
“In my view, the role the Constitution clearly assigns to the Senate is to examine the experience, qualifications, and integrity of the nominee. It is not to assess whether a nominee reflects the ideology of an individual Senator or would rule exactly as an individual Senator would want.“
Her support gives Democrats at least a one-vote cushion in the 50-50 Senate and likely saves them from having to use Vice President Kamala Harris’ tie-breaking vote to confirm President Joe Biden’s pick. It is expected that all 50 Democrats will support Jackson, though one notable moderate Democrat, Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, hasn’t yet said how she will vote. Additional swing votes may be Sen. Murkowski and Sen. Romney, though they have yet to announce. Sen. Manchin, a Democrat who votes with the GOP at times, has also announced his support of Judge Jackson.