In 2003, I interned in Sen. Susan Collins’ D.C. office. I was then, and am now, a registered Democrat, but I did not feel out of place in Collins’ office. I saw Collins as a thoughtful, independent-minded leader in the mold of Bill Cohen and Margaret Chase Smith.

I no longer see Collins as a thoughtful, independent-minded leader. The past three years have revealed her to be a politician often troubled and concerned by the chaos and corruption in Washington but rarely willing to do anything about it.

Betsy DeVos is a woefully unqualified education secretary. Collins voted to advance her nomination out of committee when she could have blocked it. Then she voted against DeVos in the full Senate vote when she knew the rest of the votes were locked up. This is not leadership.

Brett Kavanaugh is a Supreme Court justice credibly accused of sexual assault. In the Senate floor speech rationalizing her Kavanaugh vote, Collins called the testimony of his accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, “sincere, painful, and compelling.” Then she condescendingly suggested Ford had misidentified her assailant. This is not leadership.

Donald Trump is a corrupt and incompetent president. After voting to acquit him on both impeachment articles, Collins explained, “I believe that the president has learned from this case” and that Trump “will be much more cautious in the future.” This is not leadership.

Susan Collins is not the leader I thought she was in 2003. Please do not send her back to Washington in 2021.


Josh Yardley

Woburn, Massachusetts

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