Targeted with independent expenditures by George Soros and other liberal billionaires, GOP Sen. Susan Collins has seen her reelection chances in Maine long discounted by establishment pundits.
But recent polls suggest that the independent-minded Collins may win a fifth term to the Senate and surprise those same pundits.
Poll results this month from Public Policy Polling (PPP) found that Collins trailed front-running Democratic hopeful Sara Gideon in a tight race, 46 percent to 42 percent.
The latest results from PPP are particularly dramatic because the polling firm is a Democratic one whose results typically have a partisan skew. The PPP also was of registered votes, a sample that usually benefits Democratic candidates.
In an earlier June survey, Collins was trailing state House Speaker Gideon by 16 points.
“Centrist” and “middle of the road” are characterizations often applied to Collins.
She is one of three Republican senators to say she is pro-choice, and she has opposed moves to replace Obamacare.
Still, Collins has also voted with President Donald Trump 67 percent of the time and backed his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh in his confirmation fight.
She also backed the President’s tax plan in 2017, and opposed Trump’s impeachment, voting against a conviction in the Senate.
If there is any vote of Collins that has aroused animosity on the left, it was the one to confirm Kavanaugh in October 2018.
That lone vote has made Collins a top Democratic target as they seek to flip the Senate, now controlled by the GOP. It holds 53 seats to Dems' 47.
A number of the political action committees backed handsomely by Soros have drawn beads on the Maine Republican. Soros has given $7 million to Senate Majority PAC, which is aligned with the Senate Democratic leadership.
He also donated $1 million to the pro-choice EMILY’s List, and $2 million to Supermajority, a PAC co-founded by former Planned Parenthood leader Cecile Richards and Black Lives Matter activist Alicia Garza.
Perhaps most dramatically, the Planned Parenthood Action Fund supports Democrat Gideon — in large part because of Collins’ Kavanaugh vote and for 32 votes for Trump judicial nominees who have indicated they are pro-life.
In what's shaping up as the costliest Senate race in Maine history, Gideon has raised roughly $22.9 million to Collins’ $16.2 million.
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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