Photo: Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) announced Wednesday that she'll seek re-election for a fifth term in 2020, AP reports.

Why it matters: The campaign is projected to be one of the most expensive races in Maine history, as Democrats believe the centrist's seat is vulnerable.

  • She said in an email to supporters that her "bipartisan commonsense approach" will be necessary in an era of bitter partisanship.
  • Collins also faces a dramatic decision in the coming weeks on whether to vote to convict President Trump in a potential impeachment trial in the Senate.

What she's saying: Collins did not hint at how she might vote in her announcement email, but she did acknowledge the nation's divisive politics.

  • "To say that these are difficult and contentious times is most certainly an understatement. But our country has confronted much more challenging times in our history."
  • "The fundamental question I had to ask myself in making my decision was this: In today’s polarized political environment, is there still a role for a centrist who believes in getting things done through compromise, collegiality, and bipartisanship? I have concluded that the answer to this question is 'yes.'"

The state of play: The four Democrats currently vying for her seat include Maine House Speaker Sara Gideon, activist Betsy Sweet, attorney Bre Kidman and former Google executive Ross LaJeunesse.

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Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images and BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images

If you want to understand the rhetorical roots of Trump's Independence Day speech at Mount Rushmore, go back and watch Tucker Carlson's monologues for the past six weeks.

Between the lines: Trump — or rather his speechwriter Stephen Miller — framed the president's opposition to the Black Lives Matter protest movement using the same imagery Carlson has been laying out night after night on Fox.

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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

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Bolton's hidden aftershocks

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The news media has largely moved on, but foreign government officials remain fixated on John Bolton's memoir, "The Room Where It Happened."

Why it matters: Bolton's detailed inside-the-Oval revelations have raised the blood pressure of allies who were already stressed about President Trump's unreliability.