Democrats: Collins’ position on Supreme Court and abortion rights a ‘tragic betrayal of women’

Sen. Susan Collins’ statement that she would not apply an abortion rights “litmus test” to President Donald Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court appointee was blasted as a “tragic betrayal of women” by the head of the Maine Democratic Party on Friday.

Since Justice Anthony Kennedy announced Wednesday that he would be retiring, many have wondered if Sen. Collins will make protecting women’s health a priority when she votes to confirm Kennedy’s replacement.

Yet Collins “does not apply ideological litmus tests to nominees,” according to a statement Collins’ spokeswoman Annie Clark gave to the Portland Press Herald, meaning the senator won’t factor a nominee’s position on Roe v. Wade into her confirmation decision.

“When Senator Collins evaluates judges, she always looks at their judicial temperament; qualifications; experience; and respect for precedent, the rule of law, and the Constitution,” Clark said via email to the Press Herald. “These are exactly the same criteria she applied when she evaluated President Bush’s Supreme Court nominees, President Obama’s nominees, and President Trump’s most recent nominee.”

Maine Democratic Party Executive Director Katie Mae Simpson issued a response condemning Collins’ stance as “a tragic betrayal of women across Maine and America.”

“This vacancy has the potential to fundamentally change the landscape of women’s rights in America for generations,” Simpson said, “and her apparent attempt to treat it as if it is no different from those in the past is woefully ignorant of the stakes and is tremendous cause for concern.”

(Photo: Fortune Live Media/ Creative Commons via Flickr)

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