Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) seems to finally be starting to feel the pressure from the people who elect her every six years, and is upping her game on the Brett Kavanaugh nomination. Which means the pressure on her needs to continue.
As late as Monday, Collins was hiding behind the FBI investigation instigated by her colleague Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), and would say nothing more than "I am confident that the FBI will follow up on any leads that result from the interviews." That lasted until it became obvious even to her that this was not going to be an investigation that explored any leads.
Collins then called for the investigation to include Julie Swetnick's allegations against Kavanaugh, sticking her neck out in a way she'd been studiously avoiding for weeks. That could be the result of sustained constituent pressure, including a series of demonstrations at her home state offices and a sit-in on Friday in her Portland office. And this reality: "Around the state, many women are losing patience."
One of those women is Cindy Noyes, a registered Republican and schoolmate of Collins who says "It's like a bad dream, and it gets worse every day." Her message to Collins: Christine Blasey Ford was "totally 100 percent believable," and Kavanugh "just irritated me" during his testimony. It's not just women. Rev. Allen Ewing-Merrill of HopeGateWay in Portland protested at her office to tell her that Kavanaugh is "not judicial by any means" and says "If he lies about the small things, why would we have confidence that he wouldn't lie about the big things?" Independent Sandra Boushard—Noyes's sister—previously supported Kavanaugh, but now says "There's enough to say that he's not the best choice for a Supreme Court justice."
Collins might just be listening. If so, she needs to exert a little pressure on her own. The White House is still curtailing the FBI, and she has the power to change that. All she has to do is say she's going to be a "no" on cloture until a real investigation is done.
If you live in Maine, make sure she understands what she needs to do that by giving her office a call: (207) 622-8414, (207) 945-0417, (207) 283-1101, (207) 493-7873, (207) 784-6969, (207) 780-3575, (202) 224-2523.
Do you live in Maine? You have a powerful voice in stopping Trump's Supreme Court nominee. Click here to write Sen. Collins.