Collins: Alabama abortion law 'very extreme,' 'terrible'

Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsThe Hill's Morning Report - Trump says no legislation until Dems end probes Collins offering bill to boost battery research as GOP pushes energy 'innovation' Biden says Congress must move to protect abortion rights MORE (R-Maine) is taking the lead among Senate Republicans in slamming Alabama's new law banning most abortions, calling it "very extreme" and a "terrible law."

Collins, a moderate, said Thursday that the law is “inconsistent” with the Supreme Court’s ruling in Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that established a women's right to an abortion.

“I’m very much opposed to the Alabama law. I think it’s completely inconsistent with Roe v. Wade and will lead to a virtual ban on abortions in Alabama, even for victims of incest and rape. And to threaten a physician who performs an abortion with up to 99 years in jail is a very extreme law,” Collins told The Hill.

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Separately, she told CNN on Thursday, “The Alabama law is a terrible law — it’s very extreme — it essentially bans all abortions. I can’t imagine that any justice could find that to be consistent with the previous precedents.”

Collins has predicted that the courts will strike down the law.

"That legislation is so extreme that I can’t imagine that the courts would sustain it ... I’m not going to try to predict court cases, but I cannot imagine that that law won’t be overturned,” she told NBC News on Wednesday.

Collins says that she regularly vets judicial nominees based on their views about the importance of precedents such as Roe v. Wade.

“I’ve always asked what their views are on precedents. Every single nominee that I’ve personally interviewed," she said.

Collins came under fire last year after she voted for Supreme Court nominee Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughMurkowski celebrates birthday with electric scooter ride Graham urges Trump not to abandon infrastructure talks with Democrats 2020 Dems break political taboos by endorsing litmus tests MORE, and liberal activists have tried to revive that vote as potentially significant should the high court rule on the Alabama law or others.

Kavanaugh described Roe v. Wade as “important precedent.”