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WASHINGTON — Within hours of Wednesday’s surprising retirement announcement from Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, two moderate Republican women in the Senate became an important focus of Democrats seeking to prevent President Donald Trump from appointing a new justice who could reshape the court for decades to come — or at least temper how far right it might bend.

With little power to defeat a nominee outright on their own, Democrats began to look at Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, as potential allies in their cause.

Both are moderates who support abortion rights and they are likely to face growing pressure should Trump put forward a conservative nominee who might threaten to severely curb those rights. Senate Democrats are happy to lead that charge.

Continue reading:  Sens. Collins and Murkowski become early focus of Senate’s court fight

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