GOP senator: No 2016 endorsment before convention

GOP senator backs Supreme Court hearings
GOP senator backs Supreme Court hearings

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Story highlights

  • Maine Sen. Susan Collins previously backed Jeb Bush for president
  • "I really don't have a second choice at this point," Collins said

Washington (CNN)Maine Sen. Susan Collins said Thursday that she doesn't have a second choice for president after initially supporting former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

"I really don't have a second choice at this point," she told CNN's Chris Cuomo on "New Day." "I'm going to wait to see how the process plays out. I predict there will be many more turns and twists along the road to the convention and I want to see and listen to the voters."
    Collins did praise both Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Republican front-runner Donald Trump's ability to engage voters, but said there's some uncertainty that either will be able to reach 1,237 delegates -- the number needed to clinch the nomination.
    "Clearly neither Donald Trump nor Ted Cruz was my choice. Jeb was my choice," she said. "But each of them has shown an ability to gather votes. And what will be interesting is to see if either of them can reach that magic number of delegates that would make them the nominee on the first ballot."
    "I think that's in doubt," Collins added. "I'm just going to see how this plays out."
    The moderate Republican also offered praise for President Barack Obama's Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland, whom she met with this week.
    Collins said while she wouldn't commit to voting for him, she believes the Senate should hold hearings on his confirmation, which GOP leadership has said it will not do.
    "Two weeks ago when we left Washington to go back to our home states, there were only two of us who had announced that we were willing to meet with Judge Garland. Now there are some 14 Republican senators who are willing to sit down with him," she said. "My hope is that those one on one exchanges will lead to a change in attitudes."