WASHINGTON, D.C., USA — After hearing two days worth of opening statements from House Democrats, Sen. Susan Collins said she has 'not really' seen anything that's 'stuck out to her' so far.
Sen. Collins sat down with NEWS CENTER Maine exclusively Thursday morning at her D.C. office.
The Republican senator is facing national pressure as the President's impeachment trial unfolds for not taking a stronger stance on allowing witness testimony or evidence in the trial.
She said she is taking copious notes of the proceedings. Collins said it is to help her keep track of the proceedings and see whether there are any inconsistencies in what is being presented.
"I think I must have 25 pages of notes so far," Sen. Collins said.
What did catch her attention, she said, was the way both legal teams addressed each other on the Senate floor earlier this week.
Collins confirmed to NEWS CENTER Maine that she sent a note to Chief Justice John Roberts during the vote on impeachment rules early Wednesday morning, which prompted him to admonish both the House managers and Trump's defense team.
"I did give that to a senior aide," Collins said. "She brought it up to the parliamentarian. The parliamentarian discussed it with the Chief Justice, and then a few minutes later the Chief Justice admonished both parties to maintain the proper decorum, and I was glad that he did."
"Granted it got to be very late at night people were very tired it was past midnight," Collins went on to say. "But ... that doesn’t help us and it does not present the kind of serious solemn demeanor that this trial deserves when we are carrying out our constitutional duties."
However, some Mainers and activists have criticized Collins claiming she is not being as bipartisan as she says she is.
"I don’t understand that I think that that is clearly the result of the extraordinary barrage of negative dark money ads that have been running against me for a very long time now," Collins said.
When asked if she felt pressured by the Trump administration to vote with her party, she insisted that was not the case.
"I think that people who know me well know that I do not respond to threats or intimidation," Collins said. "I"m going to do what I think is right."
Earlier in the week, Collins voted largely alongside her fellow Republicans on several motions this week in order to delay hearing from witnesses, with the exception of one process vote.
She also took credit for pushing Republican leadership to make changes to the trial resolution that sought to speed up the process, including expanding the time frame for opening arguments.
Collins said she will 'most likely' vote in favor of the motion to allow witness that is expected next week.
However, she would not say which witnesses and information she would consider necessary, as senators will likely be able to vote on each one individually.
When asked if she would vote in favor of former National Security Advisor John Bolton testifying, Collins was not against the possibility.
"Certainly John Bolton is a key figure and it may well be that he's who I decide needs to be called," she said.
With Democratic leadership set to wrap up opening statements Friday, Collins is still playing it close to the chest, but vowing to listen carefully to both sides while sticking to her constitutional oath.
"We are not going to solve the challenges facing Maine and in our nation if we cannot work together and listen respectfully to those who disagree with us," Collins said. "That’s what we seem to have lost in this country."