Sen. Susan Collins is a right-wing Republican tool, not a moderate. Her Oct. 5 Senate speech, which explained her “Yes” vote on Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation, reveals truth rejected rather than reasoned support of the nominee’s judicial judgement.
I’ve lived in Tucson for 16 years, although I still consider myself a Mainer. Senator Susan Collins spoke at Mt. Desert Island High School in the 1990s, when I taught social studies there. She was nice enough. Smart enough, or authentic enough? I didn’t think so.
I liked former Senator Olympia Snowe better. She visited our island high school, too.
Following her retirement from the Senate in 2013, Snowe spoke at the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law in Tucson.
We chatted a bit after her talk. Snowe recalled a conversation she and I had at a small cocktail party in Maine, when I commended her for her civilized treatment of then President Bill Clinton, who was acquitted at his Senate impeachment trial.
“The public has no idea of how far the right-wing fanatics wanted to go,” Snowe told me at that long-ago party. “It was obscene.”
Susan Collins condoned her support of Kavanaugh in our most recent over-the-top politicized debacle.
Read the Oct. 5 Collins speech to her Senate colleagues. Crafted by staff members to explain decision-making based on previous Supreme Court cases, did it serve as her attempt to convince us that Judge Kavanaugh wouldn’t upend legal precedent to reverse Roe v. Wade, or other decided established law?
“The confirmation process has become so dysfunctional that it looks more like a caricature of a gutter-level political campaign than a solemn occasion,” said Collins, voicing her concern about the politicization of the high court during the last 30 years.
She’s usually “concerned,” then votes the opposite of the issues she’s concerned about.
Susan Collins neglected to mention the most egregious issues politicizing the Supreme Court in my lifetime: the controversial Bush v. Gore decision that handed the presidency to George W. Bush – by a 5-4 vote along party lines – following the 2000 election in which former Vice President Al Gore won the popular vote by a half-million votes, and the total disregard by Republicans of Merrick Garland’s nomination to the Supreme Court by President Barack Obama, with 10 months remaining in the least scandal-ridden presidency in our history.
Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to consider Garland’s nomination, the complete opposite of his rush to judgement to confirm Brett Kavanaugh.
Susan Collins neglected the Merrick Garland travesty. In her speech, Collins only pointed out that Garland and Kavanaugh agreed on many cases while sitting on the U.S. Court of Appeals together.
Susan Collins neglected to mention that the American Bar Association expressed concerns during Kavanaugh’s 2006 confirmation hearing for the DC circuit court, his first appointment to the judiciary.
At that hearing, Senator Ted Kennedy referred to Kavanaugh as “a political operative,” who worked closely with Karl Rove, President George W. Bush’s political fixer. Senator Patrick Leahy couldn’t get a straight answer from Kavanaugh, demanding that he “stop playing games.”
Collins did mention President Bill Clinton’s nomination of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in 1993, confirmed by a Senate vote of 96-3, while Clinton was embroiled in the Whitewater investigation.
Collins neglected to mention that Donald Trump is currently under investigation to determine if foreign influence secured his presidency.
Remember when Collins became the 51st Republican to vote for the January tax bill?McConnell promised that her measure to lower the cost of “Obamacare” premiums would someday become law. She was duped then. She’s been duped now.
I agree with Senator Collins that we should never abandon our long-held adage of “innocent till proven guilty.” Perhaps that is why there should have been a thorough FBI investigation, which included more witnesses in the Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s sexual assault allegation against Judge Kavanaugh.
Collins neglected to blame the Clintons for Kavanaugh’s disruptive confirmation process. Instead she blamed “special interest groups,” without naming names.
Despite Kavanaugh’s outrageously partisan declaration that his confirmation process represented “revenge for the Clintons,” Collins somehow imagines that he “will work to lesson the divisions in the Supreme Court so that we have fewer 5-4 decisions.”
Wasn’t his temperament that sounded like a political operative, not a judge on the highest court in the land, enough to disqualify him?
Susan Collins “stands for nothing,” which Mainers won’t forget during her upcoming 2020 reelection campaign. They have already raised nearly $2 million to support her Democratic opponent, whoever that may be.
Who knows? Perhaps in 2020 she will apologize in a memoir written from Presque Isle, Maine.