GOP Sen. Collins: I'm not sure Trump understands living 'paycheck to paycheck'

GOP Sen. Collins: I'm not sure Trump understands living 'paycheck to paycheck'
© Stefani Reynolds

Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsOvernight Energy: Collins receives more donations from Texas oil, gas industry than from Maine residents | Interior chief left meetings off schedule | Omar controversy jeopardizes Ocasio-Cortez trip to coal mine Embattled senators fill coffers ahead of 2020 Collins receives more donations from Texas fossil fuel industry than from Maine residents MORE (R-Maine) on Thursday said she does not know if President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Dems demand Barr cancel 'inappropriate' press conference on Mueller report DOJ plans to release 'lightly redacted' version of Mueller report Thursday: WaPo Nadler accuses Barr of 'unprecedented steps' to 'spin' Mueller report MORE knows the hardships of living "paycheck to paycheck," saying she isn't sure the president truly understands the effects of the ongoing shutdown on government workers.

In an appearance on CNN's "Cuomo Prime Time," Collins said she was "not sure" whether the president understood the kind of financial instability the thousands of federal workers who are furloughed or who reported to work this month without pay face in their personal lives.

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"Well, there's plenty of blame to go around on this shutdown, but I'm not sure that the president fully understands what it's like to live paycheck to paycheck, as a lot of people in my state and elsewhere do," Collins said.

Collins also explained in the interview that she would support any bills to reopen the federal government, regardless of whether or not they met the White House's standard for funding of Trump's plans for a border wall. The president has demanded more than $5 billion for his wall for any measure to win his approval.

The Senate rejected two spending bills on Thursday, including a proposal from the White House. Collins voted "yes" on both measures.

"I voted yes on both because my top priority is to reopen government," Collins said. "I'm for any reasonable plan to bring it [the shutdown] to an end."

The centrist Republican also appeared to take aim at Trump's reported plans to declare a national emergency in order to circumvent Congress on the funding, which she called "very dubious from a constitutional perspective."

Her comments come as the federal government shutdown stretches into its 35th day on Friday, as thousands of federal workers experienced their second missed paychecks.