Confirmation hearings

Collins initially thought Kavanaugh should withdraw after watching Ford

Sen. Susan Collins told CNN's State of the Union Sunday that she initially thought Brett Kavanaugh would have to withdraw after hearing Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's "compelling and painful testimony," but she changed her mind when Kavanaugh came back with a "forceful" denial.

The big picture: Collins reiterated that she believed Ford was assaulted by someone and that it upended her life, but she said doesn't believe the assailant was Brett Kavanaugh. Collins said her decision to vote for Kavanaugh was driven by her belief in the American legal system of "presumption of innocence and fairness."

Heitkamp voting no on Kavanaugh

Senator Heidi Heitkamp.
Senator Heidi Heitkamp. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

North Dakota Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp told WDAY that she plans to vote against the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

The big picture: Red-state Democrats have been facing GOP wrath over Kavanaugh's confirmation. Heitkamp, in particular, is sitting 12 points behind her Republican challenger in a new Fox News poll — compared just four last month.