U.S. Republican Senator Susan Collins says she will stay in the Senate and will not run for Maine governor next year. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) U.S. Senator Susan Collins of Maine, 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. The four-term incumbent for weeks had flirted publicly with the idea of launching a bid to succeed Governor Paul LePage, a fiery conservative who was first elected in 2010 on a wave of support from the populist Tea Party movement. State laws forbid LePage from seeking a third term. Collins told a group of business leaders in Rockland, on Maine's midcoast, that she believed she could accomplish more for the state in her current role. "I was 99th in seniority when I was sworn in," she said. "I am now 15th. I hold a senior position on the powerful appropriations committee, where I have been able to accomplish a great deal for the people of our state." Collins, 64, is popular in Maine, having won reelection in 2014 with 68 percent of the vote.