Senators Susan Collins (R., Maine.) and Lisa Murkowski (R., Alaska) voted on Friday against moving the Senate into an executive session to allow McConnell to expedite the final confirmation vote that is expected to seat Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.
The Senate ended up approving the move to executive session — which allows McConnell to file cloture, thereby overcoming any potential filibuster — by a vote of 51-46. Republicans are attempting to confirm Judge Barrett to the Court bench next week, cementing a 6-3 majority of conservative justices.
However, moderate Republicans Collins and Murkowski did not support the motion. Collins has already stated she will not vote in favor of Barrett’s nomination because of the vote’s proximity to the presidential election.
Additionally, the Maine senator is in the midst of a difficult reelection campaign against Sarah Gideon, the Democratic speaker of the state House. President Trump is deeply unpopular among Maine voters, and the senator has struggled to keep a level of ideological distance between Trump and herself.