Around New England

Maine’s Sen. Susan Collins Drops In Popularity; NY Times Blames Her Support Of Kavanaugh, Trump

July 19, 2019

Multiple media outlets are reporting that a “respected online survey” (as written in the Portland Press Herald’s lede) shows that Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, the only Republican in New England’s congressional delegation, is losing her “once-strong” approval rating. The New York Times further notes that the moderate Republican senator has lost her popularity because of her apparent support of Donald Trump and because of her critical vote in confirming Supreme Court Justice Brett Cavanaugh to the nation’s highest court last year.

The Portland Press Herald (Press Herald) reports that Morning Consult conducted an online poll “with nearly 2000 Maine voters between April and June” and “found Collins had the second-lowest approval rating of any U.S. senator.”

Maine Democratic Party Chairwoman Kathleen Marra said in a prepared statement Thursday that the poll shows “the fact that we can’t count on Sen. Collins to be an independent advocate” and that Collins has placed “her party and special interests in Washington over the people of Maine. […] She turned her back on all but the wealthy […]. Mainers are fed up and ready for change.”

The Press Herald writes that the poll numbers do not surprise the Collins’ camp.

Speaking for Collins, Kevin Kelley told the Press Herald that “Collins continues to be subjected to a nonstop barrage of negative and false attacks fueled by millions of dollars in dark money,” which, he suggests, is adversely affecting voters’ understanding of what Collins has actually accomplished.

The Press Herald confirms money is pouring into the state to defeat Collins:

The new polling numbers come just a day after another national political action committee, NextGen America, announced it would spend $1 million in Maine trying to unseat Collins. The PAC focuses on turning out young voters in support of liberal or progressive candidates and causes.

The PAC plans to organize students on 11 different college campuses in Maine over the next year with the focus on defeating Collins. Collins’ seat is one of several being targeted by national groups in hopes that Democrats can recapture the majority in the upper chamber of Congress.

Another PAC, Main Voters, has reported spending $15,000 so far for online anti-Collins ads. The independent expenditure group is running a “Stop Collins” campaign that calls Maine’s senior senator a “right-wing radical” who talks “like a moderate.”

Main Voters reports receiving much of its funding – $100,000 – from former MaineToday Media owner, financier and philanthropist S. Donald Sussman, according to Federal Election Commission records.

 

 

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