Collins Says Filibuster of Kagan Unlikely

Posted May 13, 2010 at 12:24pm

Moderate Sen. Susan Collins on Thursday ruled out a filibuster of Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan unless any substantial new information arises.

The Maine Republican is one of a handful of GOP Senators that Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) would have to sway if leadership decides to try to block Kagan’s nomination, which appears increasingly unlikely. “At this point I do not see the extraordinary circumstances that I use to determine whether to filibuster a nominee,” Collins said.

Collins was one of seven Republicans to vote for Kagan last year as solicitor general. The Maine Republican said that during her private meeting with Kagan on Thursday morning, the nominee declared the landmark abortion case Roe v. Wade to be “established law.”

Additionally, Collins shot down the suggestion that Kagan lacks sufficient judicial experience, saying, “I don’t think her lack of judicial experience in any way disqualifies her.”

As for McConnell’s contention that Kagan could become a rubber stamp for the Obama administration, Collins said, “I don’t see that as an obstacle.”