Sunday, January 31, 2010

Habeas Shmabeas

Gerald journeys into the darkness that was Sen. Collins' radio address, and sets out some basic principles that were uncontroversial across the political spectrum in the age before Fox News.

I also recommend the Glenn Greenwald post Gerald links to, which demonstrates how far the GOP (and elements in the Democratic party) have come--and how fast.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Collins Goes Full Wingnut

What does Sen. Collins mean when she says that the FBI's approach in the Abdulmutalib case, "undoubtedly prevented the collection of valuable intelligence about future terrorist threats to our country"?


What does Collins know that the FBI and the rest of us don't? Someone really ought to pose the question.

But set aside the lying--and the poor production values and the even worse delivery.

The striking thing about this video is its demonstration of just how far the junior senator has drifted from the sensible, moderate center.

Sounding more like Sean Hannity (in full cowering-under-the-bed mode) than Sen. Snowe, she histrionically describes the judicial procedures used by the Bush administration in the cases of Zacarias Moussaoui and Richard Reid as "inconceivable"; "dangerous" and "a charade."

I wonder what country she was living in between 2002 and 2009.

Charade indeed.

UPDATE: Was Collins used, essentially, to launder a noxious, ultra-partisan message so that it would be more salient to the press?

It seems to have worked, at least with the right-leaning Politico.

Question of the Day

Sen. Collins has been a poster child for fiscal recklessness for pretty much her entire tenure in office. But she's usually adept at concealing this fact.

Will anyone ask the junior senator why she voted against PAYGO, something she's previously called a "much-needed restraint for members of Congress as we wrestle with fiscal decisions"?

Does she think it would play into the hands of the terrorists?

Friday, January 29, 2010


Why did Sen. Collins just vote against PAYGO? (Not a rhetorical question.)

Looking forward to all the disapproving editorials in the Maine papers.

Yeah, right.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Quote of the Day

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH):

The people who have been most outspoken about [the national] debt are the people most responsible for it...those that voted for the Iraq war, and charged it to our kid[s], those who voted for the giveaway to the drug and insurance industry in 2003 and charged it to our kids, and those who voted who tax cuts for the rich and charged it to our kids, and those who ignored infrastructure needs in this country for a decade and charged that to our kids.

And they come and they're screaming the loudest about the balanced budget. And that disturbs me.
Sen. Collins, of course, is one of those people.

Disturbing indeed.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Quote of the Day

ACLU Executive Director Anthony Romero:

It is extremely disturbing that members of the U.S. Congress are essentially calling for Obama administration officials to discard the Constitution when a terrorist suspect is apprehended--as if the Constitution should be applied on a case by case basis. The whole idea of having constitutional protections is that they be applied across the board for all those accused of a crime.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Bubble? What Bubble?

Sen. Collins will vote in favor of Ben Bernanke's bid for another term as Fed chair.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thought of the Day

On the bright side, at least Jeannine Guttman still has health insurance.

Polite Company

It's fine and dandy that folks from across the ideological spectrum can get together for a glass of wine.

But let's not forget: Helen Thomas shined a spotlight on torture while Sen. Susan Collins enabled it.

I wonder how they both feel about this.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Because We're Not Iran?

Sen. Collins appears to think that the nation's top spy should have a say in who gets prosecuted and how.

Sen. Susan Collins, the ranking Republican, wondered why Napolitano and National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair weren't part of the decision to charge Abdulmutallab as a civilian.
To be fair, Collins voiced similar thoughts back in 2001 about the civilian prosecution of shoe-bomber Richard Reid.

Just kidding.

Another View

Steve Pearlstein at WaPo:

Given how dug in everyone has become over the past two months, I'm mindful of how difficult it will be to get a few Republicans to sign on to such a deal. But there is very little in the latest version of the health-care bill that Maine's two Republican senators haven't supported in the past or couldn't support in the future.

In succumbing to the intense social and political pressure from their caucus, both Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins flunked the leadership test last year. Massachusetts has now given them a second chance to redeem their reputations and political fortunes in a state that has always valued independence over party loyalty.
Good luck with that.

Still, its nice to see a mainstream journalist acknowledge the obvious.

Of course, Pearlstein is a business columnist, not a political reporter. Clearly, he never got the memo about how everyone is supposed to be very very nice to Saint Olympia and Saint Susan.

Advice For Dems

Sen. Susan Collins:

"If this [health care] bill is pushed through despite the message sent from Massachusetts, I believe it will spur a tremendous backlash."
Left-leaning polls should probably heed Collins' warning since the success of the Democratic party is something she cares so deeply about.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

They Write Letters

Not exactly running the show on health care:

Senator Collins says she is still trying to influence what is in the bill. She has written letters to the House and Senate Majority Leaders asking for amendments that would ease the burden on small business and individuals buying health insurance.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Seems Reasonable To Me

From the Christian Science Monitor:

Sen. Susan Collins (R) of Maine, ranking minority member of the Senate Homeland Security committee, added a call for the US to cancel all US visas for people whose names are listed in the broadest database of potential terrorists. This database, the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment, is overseen by the National Counterterrorism Center and contains well over 500,000 entries.
Given how many totally legitimate visa requests get denied, it's ridiculous--absurd, really--that individuals suspected of being terrorists can still legally enter the US.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Friends All Around

Via Gerald we learn that Steve Abbott, Sen. Collins' chief of staff, has resigned to run for governor.

Naturally, former Collins staffer and Collins-coddling BDN editor Mark Woodward has joined Abbott's campaign.

And in totally unrelated news, former Collins-coddling PPH editorial page editor Jon Porter has signed on as president of the Bangor Region Chamber of Commerce. Quite the jump--from journalist to business booster. (Or maybe not.)

Meanwhile, I wonder who PPH and BDN will endorse in the gubernatorial race.

A few of Abbott's greatest hits here, here and here.

Well Which Is It?

It kinda makes a big difference:

"The administration came in determined to undo a lot of the [terrorism-related] policies of the prior administration," Senator Susan Collins of Maine, the top Republican on the homeland-security committee, told me, "but in fact is finding that many of those policies were better-thought-out than they realized--or that doing away with them is a far more complex task."

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Thought of the Day

Sen. Collins doesn't support profiling airline passengers for additional security screening on the basis of their ethnicity. But she has no problem with the government illegally listening in on the phone calls of American citizens.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

No Profiling

On national TV, Sen. Collins rejects profiling airline passengers on the basis of ethnicity and religion. (Though it should be pointed out that this sort of thing already goes on.)

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Right On Cue

Last week, we joked that PPH owed Sen. Collins a fresh fawning profile since it had run another vapid, adulatory piece about Sen. Snowe.

Well, here it is.