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New ads target Collins for supporting Kavanaugh

A pro-ObamaCare group is targeting Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsManchin wrestles with progressive backlash in West Virginia Conservatives 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 MORE (R-Maine) in new TV and digital ads for voting to confirm Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. 

The ad imitates a breaking news alert, with a narrator saying that the Supreme Court has voted to overturn ObamaCare and its protections for people with pre-existing conditions. 

Democrats and activist groups supportive of ObamaCare have argued that Kavanaugh would be the deciding vote against the health-care law should a lawsuit challenging it make it to the Supreme Court. 

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"Trump’s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to be a rubber stamp on his war on health care was a true test of Senator Collins’s commitment to health care," said Protect Our Care Chairwoman Leslie Dach. 

"Senator Collins failed that test, and Mainers will remember where she stood when the Court rules to rip health care away from us." 

A pending lawsuit brought by 20 Republican attorneys general argues ObamaCare is unconstitutional and should be overturned because it can't stand without the individual mandate, which Congress repealed last year, an action which doesn't take effect until January. 

The Trump administration largely declined to defend ObamaCare, arguing that provisions of the law that ban insurers from denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions or charging them more for coverage should be struck down. 

Judge Reed O'Connor, the federal judge who is presiding over the case, heard arguments last month and said he will make a decision soon. 

Many legal experts say the case doesn't have merit because it ignores congressional intent, and it's unlikely to be heard by the Supreme Court. 

Collins said Friday she disagrees that Kavanaugh would vote to overturn protections for people pre-existing conditions. 

"One concern that I frequently heard was that Judge Kavanaugh would be likely to eliminate the Affordable Care Act’s [(ACA)] vital protections for people with pre-existing conditions," Collins said Friday when she announced her support for him on the Senate floor.

"In a dissent in Seven-Sky v. HolderJudge Kavanaugh rejected a challenge to the ACA on narrow procedural grounds, preserving the law in full. Many experts have said his dissent informed Justice Roberts’s opinion upholding the ACA at the Supreme Court."