Kudos to The Daily Beast for calling this out:
Republican Senator Susan Collins got a boost in the polls when she took credit for helping write the Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses. But now she’s back in the doldrums, her job approval at 37 percent, as she faces increasingly steep odds to win re-election.
Big corporate chains scarfed up the taxpayer money before most of the small businesses in Collins’ home state of Maine had a chance to access the funds. Some of the free-riders were shamed into returning the money, like the LA Lakers, who don’t exactly need tiding over.
Collins called Democrats “disgraceful” when they held up the CARES stimulus package to win concessions that included oversight of a special “slush fund” for corporations. Now she’s on the hot seat for supporting a no-strings-attached bailout and crafting a rescue plan for small business that turns out to be a cash cow for big business.
It’s a familiar pattern for Collins burnishing her brand as a moderate while bowing to Mitch McConnell, the Senate leader, and President Trump. The cross pressures are intensified by her bid for a fifth term in a seat that could determine which party holds the Senate next year, and by a pandemic that has exposed the chasm between what Collins says she stands for and how her actions play out.
The Maine Small Business Forum collected almost 300 names in 48 hours on a letter to the state’s four Washington representatives (two senators, two House members) on how to fix the problems of access to the government program. Three responded, says Andrew Volk of the Portland Hunt and Alpine Club—all but Collins. Volk described himself as “less than happy with the Washington representative who tried to take credit for the PPP program—she helped author it—but has not been responsive.”
Collins top opponent, Maine House Speaker Sara Gideon (D. ME), is also calling out how the reliefe package isn’t helping out small businesses:
Let’s get rid of Collins and send in someone who really is looking out for Maine’s small businesses. Click here to donate and get involved with Gideon’s campaign.