U.S. Senator Susan Collins of ME, a moderate Republican who helped block her party's efforts to repeal Obamacare this year, plans to reveal on Friday whether she will keep her focus on Washington or make a run for governor next year.
Collins plans to reveal her decision at a meeting of local business leaders in the city of Rockland.
"I want to continue to play a key role in advancing policies that strengthen our economy, help our hard-working families, improve our health care system, and bring peace and stability to a violent and troubled world".
The moderate Republican was first elected in 1996 and has played a pivotal role in the Senate in recent debates about health care policy.
Although she has been one of Maine's most popular politicians for some time, there was no guarantee that she would win her party's nomination in the June primary.
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.
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She says her seniority in the senate weighed heavily on her decision, the Senator now ranked 15th among 100 Senators. She also said she felt an affinity for Augusta, the capital, where a long line of ancestors served in the State Legislature, starting with her great-great grandfather and including her father. Maine's other senator, independent Angus King who caucuses with the Democrats, called her "a champion for the state of ME".
Collins said her mother was urging her to stay in the Senate.
Collins was one of a couple of Republican Senators who voted against the reconciliation bills over the summer that would have defunded the Planned Parenthood abortion company. The election to replace him is in 2018.
On Friday, McConnell praised Collins for choosing to remain in the Senate, saying she "brings conviction, smarts and leadership to every issue".
"Senator Collins is so busy trying to stop President Trump's agenda on the national stage, she is out of touch with her own state", LePage said in a radio address last week.
Mark Brewer, University of Maine Political Science Professor says, "Where she is right now in the United States Senate is the absolute central position".