WASHINGTON -- Republican senators are appearing less likely to support the expected nomination of Susan Rice to be secretary of state.
In a new sign that GOP support for Rice is weakening, Sen. Susan Collins of Maine today emerged from a closed-door meeting with Rice and said she's troubled by what Rice said in the days after the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
Rice, the U.N. ambassador, said then that the attack grew out of a protest over an anti-Islamic movie -- an account that has since proven to be incorrect. Collins also has concerns about what Rice knew about requests from diplomats in Libya for additional security ahead of that attack.
Collins stopped short of saying she would try to block Rice's nomination, as two other Republican senators have said they would do.
But she said if President Barack Obama were to choose Democratic Sen. John Kerry instead for the State Department job, he would have a smooth path to confirmation.
Rice also met today with Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee. He wouldn't say afterward whether he would support Rice's nomination. But he said the Issue of the Benghazi attack has been a "tawdry affair."
The Associated Press