Senator Collins Decides Not to Approve Biden Nominee

Senator Collins Decides to Not Approve Biden Nominee

( – Although the filibuster requires a 60-vote supermajority for legislation to advance in the Senate, President Joe Biden’s executive and judicial nominations require only a simple majority of 51 votes for confirmation. With Democrats controlling 50 seats and Vice President Kamala Harris casting the tie-breaking vote, Democrats have managed to get most of Biden’s nominations approved. However, they can only go without Republican support if all 50 Democrats support a nominee.

For that reason, Democrats have come to rely on Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) to push Senate measures across the finish line. Polling and political analysis organization FiveThirtyEight has reported that Collins has voted in line with Biden’s position most of the time.

On Monday, June 21, however, Collins announced she wouldn’t toe the Biden line regarding the nomination of David Chipman to head up the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF).

After meeting with Chipman and discussing his nomination with her constituents, Collins decided to oppose his nomination. Of particular concern is his record of speaking out against the firearms industry and making statements that “demean law-abiding gun owners.”

Collins also said she thought Chipman’s confirmation would cause “significant damage” to the “working relationship that must exist” between the ATF, the firearms industry, and “gun owners exercising their Second Amendment rights.”

With any luck, her decision regarding Chipman’s nomination is a preview of her position on important measures around election security and infrastructure.

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