Since Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement effective July 31, 2018, fear has been struck in the hearts of liberals everywhere.
There is a legitimate fear that replacing what had been an occasional swing vote on the Supreme Court with a decidedly conservative justice will mean the stripping of safe, legal abortion rights that were won with the landmark 1973 case Roe v. Wade.
Maine Republican Senator Susan Collins is widely seen as a moderate. Some had hoped that she would help block Trump's Supreme Court nominee or at least stand up for women's reproductive rights.
While originally, Collins implied she would ask any nominee if they would follow judicial precedent, as her coy way of saying yes, she did care about the survival of Roe v. Wade, her support for the ruling as a litmus test later seemed shaky.
Annie Clark, Collins' spokesperson, told the Portland Press Herald...
"When Senator Collins evaluates judges, she always looks at their judicial temperament; qualifications; experience; and respect for precedent, the rule of law, and the Constitution."
"These are exactly the same criteria she applied when she evaluated President Bush’s Supreme Court nominees, President Obama’s nominees, and President Trump’s most recent nominee."
"Senator Collins does not apply ideological litmus tests to nominees."