I was planning to write a more detailed post about the state of play with the ACA repeal process, and the role Collins seems to be carving out for herself, but a quote from her in a Washington Post article from today deserves an immediate response (emphasis mine):
Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) … said some activists were spreading “misinformation” about Republicans’ intentions.
“I think it’s really unfortunate that some of these paid activists are scaring people about what’s going to happen,” said Collins, who has counseled her GOP colleagues to move carefully.
At best, the statement reflects a strong bias toward believing that the environment today is no different than the typical status quo; that it’s the same group of political interest groups that are driving calls and protests vs. what it really is, an emerging national popular uprising on an unprecedented scale. At worst, it would mean that Collins knows the calls and protests are real but is seeking to delegitimize them in order to advance her–or her party’s–policy goals.
In either case, she needs to hear loud and clear that we are not professional activists acting on behalf of an interest group, but just everyday folks in Maine who are deeply concerned about the Republican plan to destroy the ACA.
So let’s keep calling to urge Collins to oppose repeal of the ACA, but for the next few days add in that we are NOT paid activists, but concerned constituents.
P.S. Don’t let them tell you repeal is okay because Collins is introducing a plan for replacement. All replacement plans are dead on arrival: they need 60 votes in the Senate vs. only 50 for repeal, so they can’t pass without gaining at least 11 Democratic Senators AND not losing more than 23 Rs in the House AND getting Trump to sign it. Not. Gonna. Happen.