Thursday, August 6, 2009

PPH: Collins Surrenders On Clunkers

It's extraordinarily refreshing to see a local paper taking on Sen. Collins, and viewing her with skepticism. But I couldn't disagree more with the substance of PPH's critique of the junior senator, which borders on unfair.

After all, "cash for clunkers" is one of the fleetingly rare instances when Collins put forward a position on the issue before the last minute; publicly set out her priorities for the legislation; and then was flexible enough to reverse herself--on the basis of substance--when it was clear that, despite some faulty architecture, the program was nonetheless meeting her stated goals.

Collins, in other words, let herself be swayed by new information. That's not surrendering. That's acting like a grown-up

Don't get me wrong: I wish Collins had brought the same deliberative, open approach to the debate over the Bush tax cuts. Or the Iraq war. Or virtually any of the controversies of the last eight-plus years.

But to say that Collins simply folded here is awfully misleading.

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