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Washington Watch: Republican Collins backs Jackson — here’s what’s next for Biden’s Supreme Court nominee

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson secured a Republican vote on Wednesday, as she appears on track to become the first Black woman to serve on the Supreme Court.

Maine Sen. Susan Collins became the first Republican to say she plans to back President Joe Biden’s nominee, saying in a statement: “After reviewing Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s extensive record, watching much of her hearing testimony, and meeting with her twice in person, I have concluded that she possesses the experience, qualifications, and integrity to serve as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court.”

Now see: Majority of Americans want Ketanji Brown Jackson to serve on the Supreme Court, polls show

Jackson’s nomination is slated to go before the Senate Judiciary Committee for a vote on Monday at 10 a.m. Eastern. Jackson is expected to win the votes of all 11 Democrats on the committee. If all Republicans vote against her and there is a panel tie, Democrats would need to take an extra step to move her nomination to the Senate floor for a confirmation vote.  

Collins was the first GOP senator to say publicly that she’d back Jackson, but may not be the last. Other Republican senators who may support her are Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Mitt Romney of Utah and Thom Tillis of North Carolina. Tillis sits on the judiciary panel and at one point told Jackson he looked at part of her philosophy with “respect.”

Also see: Ketanji Brown Jackson says she plans to recuse herself from Harvard affirmative-action case if confirmed to Supreme Court

All 50 Senate Democrats are expected to back Jackson in a floor vote. A final Senate vote is expected later next week, following the judiciary panel’s meeting. Since Collins has announced her support, Democrats won’t need Vice President Kamala Harris to break a tie.

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