Collins says she hasn't decided on 2020 run, criticizes 'dark money groups'

Collins says she hasn't decided on 2020 run, criticizes 'dark money groups'
© Aaron Schwartz

Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsCNN: Biden likened Clinton impeachment to 'partisan lynching' in 1998 The Memo: Trump 'lynching' firestorm is sign of things to come Susan Collins calls on Trump to retract tweet comparing impeachment inquiry to 'lynching' MORE (R-Maine) says she has not decided whether to run for reelection, suggesting “dark money groups” have hurt her chances.

“The divisiveness of our country and the unceasing attacks by dark money groups in Maine have clearly had an impact,” Collins told Bloomberg in a recent interview.

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“But I believe that once Mainers really focus on the race and we remind them of my being the No. 1 most bipartisan member of the Senate, and all the accomplishments that I can point to that have directly benefited the state, I’ll be fine,” she added.

Collins, who was reelected with two-thirds of the vote in 2014, was one of the most popular senators in her home state in 2015, with an approval rating of 78 percent.

That approval rating has since dropped to 45 percent, making her the second-least popular after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGraham to introduce resolution condemning House impeachment inquiry Overnight Defense: Trump's Syria envoy wasn't consulted on withdrawal | McConnell offers resolution urging Trump to rethink Syria | Diplomat says Ukraine aid was tied to political investigations Partisan squabbles endanger congressional response to Trump's course on Syria MORE (R-Ky.).

Collins’s decisive vote to confirm Supreme Court Justice Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughTrump urged to hire chief strategist for impeachment fight Anita Hill: Kavanaugh's confirmation filled me with 'profound sadness and disappointment' Majority disapprove of Trump Supreme Court nominations, says poll MORE in 2018 made her one of the top targets for Democrats, who face an uphill climb to a Senate majority in the 2020 map.

Several Democrats have already announced a run against her next year, including Maine House Speaker Sara Gideon and attorney Bre Kidman, as well as Betsy Sweet, former director of the Maine Women’s Lobby, who lost in the 2018 Democratic primary for governor to Gov. Janet Mills.

Collins told Bloomberg she has overcome unfavorable odds in the past.

“In 2008, which was another very tough race where [Senate Minority Leader] Chuck SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerTurkey says soldier killed despite cease-fire in Syria Schumer calls for FDA to probe reports of contaminated baby food How Trump and Pelosi went from bad to worse MORE [D-N.Y.] had his top pick in a very capable congressman, a very worthy opponent in Tom Allen, at one point that was a 7-point race and I ended up winning by 20,” she said.