Efforts to convince Collins to vote against Kavanaugh for a lifetime appointment are intensifying this week, with healthcare activist Ady Barkan amassing more than $1 million in small donations in a grassroots campaign and Planned Parenthood launching a six-figure ad buy targeting the senator. Polls commissioned by Planned Parenthood in both states show that a strong majority of voters would like to see Roe v. Wade upheld. The former gave her a 90% rating in 2014, while the latter defended Collins for standing with Planned Parenthood and with women "when it mattered most".
"The people of ME want to be clear with you, Senator Collins", the Campaign by Barkan reads.
The Boston Globe said in an editorial yesterday: "Kavanaugh's obvious hostility to abortion rights is alarming". Celinda Lake, a leading pollster and Democratic strategist, warned that Collins will lose her credibility as a moderate if she votes to confirm Trump's pick. She hasn't indicated how she might vote. "Threats or other attempts to bully her will not play a factor in her decision making whatsoever". Pro-choice activists have reportedly sent Collins, who is one of the very few pro-choice Republicans, about 3,000 coat hangers, a reference to the unsafe and potentially fatal illegal abortions women were forced to seek out or self-perform pre- Roe v. Wade. At Rewire.News, Katelyn Burns calls the story of "Kelly Gregory [, who] is a Tennessee resident living with stage 4 terminal breast cancer [,]... emblematic of what is at stake for many people in the United States when it comes to health care, and that's exactly why Sens". "If I vote against him, the money is refunded to donors". She's getting an overwhelming amount of feedback from constituents pushing her to vote no, but she may be betting on the fact that in two years, people will have forgotten this specific vote. "That's going to make her seem a lot less independent", Lake told Huffpost. "We will continue to participate in our democracy", she said. It also would have little impact on Kavanaugh's confirmation unless two holdout Republicans - including Maine U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski to call for a complete vetting of Kavanaugh. Planned Parenthood only endorses politicians who have a 100 percent rating on choice issues, so the group hasn't endorsed Collins or Murkowski since 2010 and won't again. The group isn't actually giving her something of value in exchange for the no vote on Kavanaugh; they're promising not to spend the money they've collected against her.