Collins: 'Very difficult' to imagine voting for ObamaCare repeal bill
© Greg Nash

Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsConservatives bankrolled and dominated Kavanaugh confirmation media campaign The Hill's Morning Report — Presented by the Coalition for Affordable Prescription Drugs — Health care a top policy message in fall campaigns Susan Collins and the mob mentality MORE (R-Maine) signaled on Sunday that she is unlikely to support the latest GOP ObamaCare repeal effort, but said she hasn't made a final decision.

"It’s very difficult for me to envision a scenario where I would end up voting for this bill," she told CNN's "State of the Union."

She added that she has "a number of serious reservations" about the bill, including its impact on "cost and coverage," Medicaid and the "erosion of protections" for pre-existing conditions.

But Collins stressed that she has not made a final decision and is waiting for the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) analysis that could be released as soon as Monday.

The CBO has warned it will only release a preliminary analysis, and it could be "several weeks" before it can fully determine the impact on the number of Americans who have health insurance or the cost of insurance.

GOP leadership can't afford to lose Collins's vote if they want to pass the ObamaCare repeal bill from GOP Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamCorker: US must determine responsibility in Saudi journalist's death Dem senator calls for US action after 'preposterous' Saudi explanation Trump calls Saudi explanation for journalist's death credible, arrests 'good first step' MORE (S.C.) and Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyTrump signs bills banning drug pricing 'gag clauses' Dem ad accuses Heller of 'lying' about record on pre-existing conditions GOP senator suggests criminal referral for third Kavanaugh accuser's 'apparently false affidavit' MORE (La.), which would replace ObamaCare's insurance subsidies and Medicaid expansion with block grants.

GOP Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainMeghan McCain calls Russian attacks against her father the 'highest compliment' to her family Arizona Dems hope higher Latino turnout will help turn the state blue McConnell: GOP could try to repeal ObamaCare again after midterms MORE (Ariz.) announced on Friday that he couldn't in "good conscience" vote for the legislation.

GOP Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulSaudi mystery drives wedge between Trump, GOP Noisy democracy, or rude people behaving like children? Lawmakers, Wall Street shrug off Trump's escalating Fed attacks MORE (Ky.) has also said he is opposed to the legislation.

Several other key senators, including Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiPoll: Palin unpopular in Alaska following jab at Murkowski Conservatives bankrolled and dominated Kavanaugh confirmation media campaign Ex-Florida lawmaker leaves Republican Party MORE (Alaska), remain on the fence.

Collins—who was widely viewed as a likely "no" vote after opposing the GOP repeal proposals in July—said on Friday that she was "leaning against" supporting the legislation.

“The premiums would be so high they would be unaffordable,” she told the Portland Press-Herald, referring to the cost for individuals with pre-existing health conditions.

GOP leadership lacks a clear path to getting 50 votes for the Graham-Cassidy bill before the rules allowing Republicans to pass their healthcare with a simple majority—bypassing a Democratic filibuster—expire at the end of the month.

An ObamaCare repeal bill that needs 60 votes likely couldn't pass the Senate, with Democrats unanimously opposed to the effort.

Despite the long odds, Graham, Cassidy and the Trump administration have pledged to keep searching for 50 votes as they try to find a way to pass legislation this week.

Collins said on Sunday that she had a "lengthy" talk with Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceThe Hill's Morning Report — Presented by the Coalition for Affordable Prescription Drugs — Trump, Obama head to swing states with Senate majority in balance The Fed really is ‘crazy’ for undercutting Trump recovery Hillicon Valley: Russia-linked hackers hit Eastern European companies | Twitter shares data on influence campaigns | Dems blast Trump over China interference claims | Saudi crisis tests Silicon Valley | Apple to let customers download their data MORE and has been told that they are still making revisions to Graham-Cassidy to try win over enough support.

Trump floated over the weekend that Paul could ultimately be convinced to vote yes, saying that he thinks "he may find a way to get there for the good of the Party!"

Trump also targeted Murkowski, saying in Alaska "deductibles high, people angry!"

Paul opened the door to supporting a significantly revised version of Graham-Cassidy on Sunday, but those changes could threaten support from other factions of the GOP caucus.

"I've always been a yes for repeal," he told NBC. "They could remove the block grants from it, and then we could vote on what we all agree on."

--This report was updated at 10:00 a.m.