As Sen. Susan Collins decides whether to accept a possible Trump endorsement, she will have to take a stand. For any other president, she would decide based on policy. But there is more at stake with Donald Trump.

By accepting his endorsement Sen. Collins would be saying it’s OK for the president to lie or mislead the people of America thousands of times. She would be agreeing that the rules of law outlined in the Constitution are changeable, and “shall furnish tax returns on request” really means “only if Trump wants to.”

Collins would be minimizing the First Amendment and its protection of a free press, because only supportive coverage is acceptable to Trump. She would be saying that a man who prefers the advice of conservative TV political commentators to professionals at the White House is well informed. She would be agreeing that our security agencies and justice system are incompetent because they are investigating a president who surrounds himself with criminals.

By standing with Trump, Collins would be agreeing that Hispanics and Muslims are dangerous and sending children thousands of miles from their family is OK. She would be saying that Roe v. Wade is no longer important, because Trump is moving closer to the stand of his Christian base.

By accepting Trump’s endorsement, Collins would be saying she is OK with a president unwilling to share the details of his meeting with the adversarial leader of the country that interfered in our election.

It would be nice to think that a woman who has served the people of Maine for 22 years would stand up to this kind of deplorable behavior. Except it appears she spent a recent weekend in Florida, around the corner from Trump’s home, raising money, instead of in Maine.

 

Jo Trafford

Portland

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