Oct 5, 2018

What they're saying: Senators react to Collins' Kavanaugh decision

Susan Collins. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Moments after Senator Susan Collins announced her decision to confirm Supreme Court Justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh, reactions from her peers poured in.

The big picture: Republicans couldn't be happier, while Democrats walk away virtually defeated. The left was holding out for Collins, a Republican from Maine, and minutes after her announcement Sen. Joe Manchin followed suit securing the votes needed to pass Kavanaugh through to the Supreme Court.

"I listened carefully to Christine Blasey Ford's testimony before the Judiciary Committee. ... I believe that she is a survivor of a sexual assault and that this trauma has upended her life. Nevertheless, the four witnesses she named could not corroborate any of the events of that evening gathering where she says the assault occurred."
— Sen. Collins
What they're saying

Sen. Dianne Feinstein: "Judge Kavanaugh’s views on guns are extreme. In a dissent he would have struck down D.C.’s assault weapons ban because they have not historically been banned. This logic means that as weapons become more advanced and more dangerous, they cannot be regulated at all."

Sen. Chuck Grassley: "I never knew Sen Margaret Chase Smith of Maine but I know her reputation for her trailblazing spirit & taking leadership positions on tough issues...I think Sen Collins in the same spirit did more to expose the ugliness of the controversy around the Kavanaugh nom process than any other senator. I commend Sen Collins for her thoughtfulness."

Sen. Orrin Hatch: Collins' speech "was the best analysis of Judge Kavanaugh’s record we have heard, a thorough review of questions raised, and a powerful explanation as to why he is worthy of consideration."

Sen. Tim Scott: "What a speech by @SenatorCollins. Well researched, clearly spent a lot of time thinking through all of the information before us."

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders: "Thank you @SenatorCollins for standing by your convictions and doing the right thing to confirm Judge Kavanaugh."

Former President George H.W. Bush: ".@SenatorCollins — political courage and class. I salute my wonderful friend and her principled leadership."

Former Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice:

One more thing

After Sen. Murkowski announced her decision to vote against Kavanaugh, former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin hinted at her re-election date:

Go deeper

Bernie Sanders wins Nevada caucus

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders waves to supporters at a campaign rally on Friday in Las Vegas. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders is projected to handily win the Nevada Democratic primary caucus, becoming the clear frontrunner among 2020 Democratic presidential primary election candidates.

Why it matters: Nevada is the first state with a diverse population to hold a nominating contest, highlighting candidates' abilities to connect with voters of color — particularly Latino voters.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 27 mins ago - Politics & Policy

South Korea and Italy see spikes in coronavirus cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The novel coronavirus has spread to more nations, and the U.S. reports a doubling of its confirmed cases to 34 — while noting these are mostly due to repatriated citizens, emphasizing there's no "community spread" yet in the United States.

The big picture: COVID-19 has now killed at least 2,362 people and infected more than 77,000 others, mostly in mainland China. New countries to announce infections recently include Israel and Lebanon, while Iran reported its sixth death from the virus. South Korea's confirmed cases jumped from 204 Friday to 433 on Saturday and Italy's case count rose from 3 to 62 by Saturday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 2 hours ago - Health

America's rundown roads add to farmers' struggles

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

American farmers are struggling to safely use the roads that cut through their fields; decades of neglect and lack of funding have made the routes dangerous.

The big picture: President Trump has long promised to invest billions in rural infrastructure, and his latest proposal would allocate $1 trillion for such projects. Rural America, where many of Trump's supporters live, would see a large chunk of that money.