(Washington, D.C.) —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.
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.
Jackson will replace the retiring Justice Stephen Breyer. Jackson would be also the court’s first ex-public defender.
Collins supported Jackson the most, as she was likely to vote for Jackson’s nominees. Collins also has a history voting for Supreme Court nominations that were chosen by both presidents. The only nominee she’s voted against since her election in the mid-1990s is Justice Amy Coney Barrett in 2020.
She said in the statement that she doesn’t expect that she will always agree with Jackson’s decisions.
“That alone, however, is not disqualifying,” Collins said. “Indeed, that statement applies to all six Justices, nominated by both Republican and Democratic Presidents, whom I have voted to confirm.”
Jackson’s support from other GOP senators is not clear. Last week, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell stated that he wouldn’t support Jackson because of concerns regarding her sentencing record as well as her support for liberal advocacy organizations.
Read More From Time