Republican Sen. Susan Collins, who is fighting to keep her Senate seat in one of the country’s most notable races, said Tuesday she’s focusing on her own race, again offering no indication of whether she is supporting President Donald Trump.Collins was in Bangor Tuesday afternoon to commemorate the centennial anniversary of the Disabled American Veterans at the Cole Land Transportation Museum. At the event, she spoke with NEWS CENTER Maine about the presidential race, one day after her party officially nominated Trump at the Republican National Convention.
When asked whether she is supporting Trump in his reelection campaign, Collins dodged the question, saying, “You know, I’m concentrating on my own race, you may have noticed it’s a pretty vigorous race this year.”
Sen. Susan Collins may be absent from this week’s Republican National Convention, but she supports President Donald Trump, according to the head of Maine’s Republican Party.
Maine GOP Chairperson Demi Kouzounas — when asked on a call arranged by a Trump campaign committee about Collins’ absence from the convention — said Monday that the senator supports Trump.
“They’re not mutually exclusive. I think they both have their jobs to do. They both support each other,” Kouzounas said on a Trump Victory call with reporters.
Sen. Susan Collins has repeatedly declined to say whether or not she is voting for President Donald Trump in the November election, but that didn’t stop Maine’s senior senator from campaigning under his banner — literally.
Images posted on social media on Aug. 22 show the senator posing with a Trump sign and speaking in front of the Sanford Republican Committee headquarters, right below a large Trump-Pence banner hanging across the building’s exterior.
As critics pointed out on social media, Collins’ campaign chose to share a set of carefully selected images of the event. The angles of the shots exclude the plentiful pro-Trump signage and, in one photo, a portion of a Trump sign appears to have even been blurred out through digital editing.
By the way, Collins might have another problem to deal with:
For opponents of U.S. Sen. Susan Collins, her 24-year tenure in the Senate is a sign she has been in Washington too long. For supporters, it is a main reason to send her back.
Those opposing perspectives come to a head at Bath Iron Works, where shipbuilders returned to the job this week after a two-month strike that gained national attention. Local S6, the 4,300-member machinists union that was on strike for two months, has yet to make an endorsement this year after supporting Collins during her re-election campaign in 2014.
No Maine senator has lost re-election since 1978. BIW is a good canvas for the seniority debate. It occupies a unique position in Maine politics because work at the shipyard — one of the state’s largest private employers — centers on U.S. Navy contracts that perennially test a congressional delegation that has often carried outsized influence.
House Speaker Sara Gideon, the Democrat facing U.S. Sen. Susan Collins in November, said Tuesday she would support repealing the Senate filibuster if needed for her party to pass major legislation on issues such as health care.
The answer came days after national Democrats began raising the idea anew amid rosy polling in swing states and as Gideon rolled out a health care agenda reiterating support for a Medicare-like public option. It is a possibility if Democrats control both houses of Congress and the presidency after the 2020 election, but it would be unlikely without ending the filibuster.
Collins, a Republican, rebuked Gideon’s stance through a spokesperson and has defended the procedural move, though it has eroded over the past decade in a tit-for-tat partisan battle. It allows any senator to block a vote on a bill unless 60 senators vote to end debate on it, dooming all but consensus legislation.