Sen. Susan Collins won't run for governor, will remain in US Senate

Sen. Susan Collins won't run for governor, will remain in US Senate

Republican U.S. Sen. Susan Collins says she will decide this week if she's running. "You are such a person'".

The 64-year-old Collins has been weighing for months whether she'd make a bigger impact in the Senate or by launching a bid to become the first woman to serve as Maine's governor.

"I am a congenital optimist, and I continue to believe that Congress can - and will - be more productive", Collins added. Though she lost that race, she said she was still drawn to the ability of a governor to have a direct and immediate effect on people's lives by creating jobs and spurring economic development. She said the lack of public hearings and time to analyze ACA repeal proposals were wrong.

"Senator Collins is so busy trying to stop President Trump's agenda on the national stage, she is out of touch with her own state", LePage said in a radio address last week. She said that older citizens in ME would have been most harmed, with health insurance premiums skyrocketing with high deductibles.

As one of the few remaining moderate Republicans in the Senate, Collins' departure would have left a noticeable mark on the politics of the chamber.

The moderate Republican was first elected in 1996 and has played a pivotal role in the Senate in recent debates about health care policy.

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She criticized how the Affordable Care Act was approved in 2009 without a single Republican vote.

Such a move would also send shock waves through the Senate, jeopardizing the GOP's chances of holding her seat after her term ends in 2020 and marking another defection from the Senate Republican conference amid the populist uprising fueled by President Donald Trump and his allies. LePage has spent much of 2017 hammering Collins back home for opposing the GOP line on the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, opening her up to a Republican primary. In July, Collins was caught on a hot mic voicing concerns about Trump's understanding of the budget and debt ceiling, as well as responding to a Republican congressman who challenged her to a duel over her position on health care, in part by calling him "unattractive".

Maine's current governor, Paul LePage, a Trump ally, would have appointed a replacement for Collins if she chose to leave the Senate.

LePage has repeatedly bashed Collins, declaring almost a year ago that "she's done in the Republican party" because she refused to support Trump last year.

Among other assignments, Collins is a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, the panel leading the congressional Russian Federation investigations.

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