Sen. Angus King formally announced Friday he will vote to confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court.

“After carefully reviewing Judge Jackson’s record, attending portions of her nomination hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee, and meeting with her face-to-face, I will enthusiastically vote to support her confirmation,” King said in a written statement.

Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, meets with Supreme Court nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson. Photo courtesy of Sen. King’s office

“I have been impressed by Judge Jackson’s extensive qualifications, deep understanding of the law, and exemplary judicial temperament, and can clearly see why she has received bipartisan support throughout her judicial career,” he said. “I’m especially pleased that she will bring a much-needed new perspective as both the first Black woman and the first former public defender to be appointed to the Supreme Court. ”

King, an independent who caucuses with the Democrats, was counted as a near-certain “yes” vote for Jackson. He had already voted to confirm Jackson to federal district and appeals courts and he praised President Biden for nominating her to replace retiring Justice Stephen Breyer.

“I’ve already voted for her, I think twice, and she’s immensely well qualified,” King told the Press Herald last month.

Although Jackson faced some tough questions by Republican senators during a multi-day hearing last month, her confirmation has been considered a safe bet because Democrats effectively control 50 votes and any tie would be decided by Vice President Kamala Harris.

Maine Sen. Susan Collins announced last week that she would support Jackson, providing at least one Republican vote and making it extremely unlikely that Harris will be needed to break a tie. Collins also criticized the political partisanship that now dominates the Supreme Court confirmation process.

King has voted no on all three Supreme Court nominees that have come before the Senate since he has been a member. All three were nominated by President Trump and were confirmed by Republican majorities in the Senate: Justices Amy Coney Barrett, Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch.

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