Despite admitting to CNN she still has not read the full report, Sen. Susan Collins—the Republican from Maine who remains a potentially crucial swing vote in the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh—emerged from a briefing on Thursday morning and said a report by the FBI on the allegations against the nominee appeared to her the result of a "very thorough investigation."
Collins' comments were met with immediate incredulity, especially as the scope of the probe has now been established as objectively limited in scope given that neither Dr. Christine Blasey Ford nor Kavanaugh himself were interviewed by agents.
I'd love @SenatorCollins to explain how a "very thorough investigation" didn't find time to interview the accuser, the accused, or dozens of corroborating witnesses.
— John Iadarola (@johniadarola) October 4, 2018
— Vanita Gupta (@vanitaguptaCR) October 4, 2018
Josh Marshall, editor and publisher of Talking Points Memo, said Collins' reaction only confirms what many believed was true from that start: that the FBI probe—constrained from the start by Republicans in the Senate and the White House—was nothing but an orchestrated "whitewash" to give fence-sitting lawmakers the cover they needed to ultimately vote "yes" on Kavanaugh.
"Fix is in, folks," Marshall tweeted in response to her comments. "Fix is in."
It's almost as if @SenatorCollins' whole "moderate" pose was a huge fraud or something. Go figure.
— Bruce Mirken (@BruceMirken) October 4, 2018
Of those who understand the underlying reality of her entire political career—one in which she only takes a principled stance against her party when its clear the Republicans can afford to lose her vote—few were surprised by Collins' indication that she is moving towards a vote to confirm.