Senator Susan Collins is the kind of “moderate,” blue-state Republican who stands up for the right of a known racist to become attorney general of the United States — and who votes as President Trump would want her to 88 percent of the time.
Which is to say, she’s a thorn in the side of blue America: a right-wing senator who’s taking up a seat that Democrats would have a great shot at winning, if not for Collins’s high name recognition and reputation as a centrist.
And so, when Collins said Tuesday that she was considering a run for the Maine governor’s mansion in 2018, many progressives were ecstatic.
“Let me say that I am looking at where I can do the most good for the people of Maine,” Collins said, after WGAN radio hosts Matthew Gagnon and Ken Altshuler asked if she was giving serious thought to a gubernatorial campaign. “In the Senate I now have significant seniority, and that allows me to do a lot. Coming to be governor, if I were fortunate enough to be elected … you can work on issues I care a lot about, like economic development, jobs, education. And I would try to heal the state and bring people back together, which I think is important as well.
“So I’m trying to figure out where I can do the most good,” Collins concluded. “I’m being totally honest with you — I truly don’t know. I really don’t. It’s a hard decision.”
Democrats should never forget that Susan Collins is not on their team: As the Portland Press Herald notes, if Collins resigns from the Senate in 2018, current Maine governor Paul LePage will get to appoint a replacement to serve the final two years of her term.
In other words, if Collins quits the Senate, she will probably prevent Democrats from being able to win Maine’s governor’s mansion ahead of 2020 redistricting — while also giving the most racist major office-holder in New England (if not the whole United States) the opportunity to unilaterally replace one of the Senate’s only somewhat-moderate Republicans with a fire-breathing Trumpist.
And if you think we can trust that, in 2020, the voters of Maine will oust whichever crackpot, quasi-white-nationalist their governor sends to the Senate, I have three words for you: Paul freaking LePage.