Friday, May 24, 2013

Flippin and Floppin

Portland Press Herald, March 11, 2013

Maine Sen. Susan Collins had a different rationale for her vote [to filibuster the nomination of Caitlin Halligan to the U.S. District Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit]...

"My vote solely reflects my determination that this seat does not need to be filled by anyone," said Collins, a Republican. If Halligan were to be nominated for a different vacancy, "I would likely vote to confirm her."

New York Times, May 23, 2013
The Senate voted 97 to 0 to confirm Mr. Obama's nominee for a long-vacant seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.
If the seat doesn't need to be filled...why vote to fill it?

(The roll call hasn't made it onto the Senate's website yet. But one thing we know about the senior senator is that she doesn't like to miss votes.)

Monday, May 13, 2013

Quote of the Day

Gov. Lincoln Chafee (I-RI):

"I think that in these states you have to worry about a primary," he said. "That's just a reality. You saw [Sen.] Bob Bennett in Utah lose a primary. [Sen.] Richard Lugar [in Indiana] lose a primary. [Congressman] Mike Castle in Delaware lost a [Senate] primary. That's what you worry about as a Republican. They're going to come at you from the far right. I’m sure that’s what Susan Collins is worried about [on gay marriage].

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Revisiting History

Sen. Susan Collins, in her commencement address to USM students yesterday:

Let me give you an example from my own life. In 1994, I won an eight-way primary but lost a grueling general election to be Maine's Governor. I was unemployed, uninsured, flat broke, and uncertain how I was going to pay my mortgage.
Portland Press Herald, July 28, 2003:
After Collins lost the 1994 gubernatorial race to Angus King, [Bushmaster Firearms owner Richard] Dyke played a big role in finding her next job. Dyke donated $265,000 to his alma mater, Husson College, to establish a center for small business, which hired Collins.

"I told Susan, 'They are looking for an executive director, and that might be a good fit for you until you decide to run again,'" Dyke said.

The arrangement was no secret, says Collins press secretary Megan Sowards. "It is called the 'Richard E. Dyke Center for Family Business,' and she was the inaugural director," Sowards said.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Quote of the Day

Paul Krugman:

So they just convincingly voted for Mark Sanford, a man who cheated on his wife, tried to cover his actions with an absurd story about hiking the Appalachian Trail, and trespassed on his ex-wife's property, over an exemplary Democratic candidate. And you know what? Given their preferences, this was the right thing to do.

Look, we have an intensely polarized political system, and in Congress, at least, party affiliation is basically all that matters. When Massachusetts voters chose Scott Brown because he seemed like a nice guy, they were being idiots; his character (which I suspect they misjudged, but never mind) didn't matter, while the loss of that 60th seat in the Senate almost killed health reform.