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.
Collins made her long-awaited announcement at a Friday, Oct. 13 breakfast meeting of the Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce held at the Samoset Resort. Susan Collins, R-Maine, greeted members of the Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce at a Friday morning breakfast, October 13, and before the crowd of approximately 230 business owners, plus television film crews and reporters, she announced that she will not be campaigning for the state's governor's office this coming year.
Collins has come under criticism from current Maine Gov. Paul LePage (R) over her position on health care. "And I would try to heal the state and bring people back together, which I think is important as well".
As she weighed the decision, Collins consistently sounded torn between her power in the Senate, as a senior Republican in the majority and a moderate whose vote is often courted by leadership in both parties, and the possibility of taking action as governor without the need for cooperation from fifty-plus other senators.
LePage is an ally of President Donald Trump, whom Collins has publicly criticized in the past.
She then addressed the "elephant in the room", and said that she feels as though she will be best able to serve the people of ME by remaining in the Senate, which was met with a standing ovation from the crowd.
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In a much-anticipated announcement regarding her home state's governor race, Maine Sen.
She's not afraid to buck her party.
Collins, who has served for two decades in the Senate, was part of the Gang of 14 bipartisan senators that prevented the so-called nuclear option by Senate Republicans over an organized use of the filibuster by Senate Democrats.
Collins grew up in Caribou, in far northern Maine.
Maine's 2018 gubernatorial race could be a referendum on the legacy of LePage, whose administration slashed entitlement growth and touts a healthy state surplus.
Collins, 64, is popular in ME, having won reelection in 2014 with 68 percent of the vote. She said the "hands-on" part of the job, as well as spending more time in Maine, "very much appeals to me".