U.S. Senator Susan Collins of ME, a moderate Republican who helped block her party's efforts to repeal Obamacare this year, said on Friday that she would not run for governor of her state next year, keeping her focus on Washington.
Her decision means Collins will continue to wield major influence in the Senate, where twice this year she was one of three Republicans to break with President Donald Trump and oppose the GOP's efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
"This decision has not been any easy one".
"I am a congenital optimist, and I continue to believe that Congress can - and will - be more productive", she said.
The announcement was met by a standing ovation from the audience of 230, almost double the previously most attended Chamber breakfast.
Senator Susan Collins has ended months of speculation.She will not run for governor of Maine.
Collins is seen as the most middle-of-the-road Republican in the Senate, willing to buck Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) when she disagrees with them.
Collins announced plans Friday that she will remain in the Senate, ending speculation that she would run for ME governor next year.
In a much-anticipated announcement regarding her home state's governor race, Maine Sen.
It all but guarantees that her mark on Maine's political history will be stamped in the Senate, where she'll have served for 24 years at the end of this term in 2021 - as long as Margaret Chase Smith, her idol, and longer than William Cohen, her predecessor and mentor.
Three Republican candidates are now in the race. Though she lost that race, she said she was still drawn to the ability of a governor to have a direct and immediate effect on people's lives by creating jobs and spurring economic development. Gov. Paul R. LePage, a fellow Republican who is barred by term limits from seeking a third term, has been stirring the political pot against her. Ms. Collins, a moderate who has glided to victory in her recent elections, this time faced the likely prospect of bruising and expensive attacks from the right.