Thanksgiving break for Congress this year is a bit different than most – particularly if you happen to be a Republican senator. They’ll go home to their constituents and face the question of whether they’re willing to condone the criminal behavior of Donald Trump. Even worse for them, it’s a lose-lose proposition. If they’re willing to stand up to Trump and condemn his betrayal of the United States, it’ll make their re-election prospects next year that much harder, as they risk primary challengers and losing donors. For those willing to go along, they face rightfully angry constituents and further doom their re-election prospects with moderate voters.
On Tuesday, Sen. Susan Collins, up for re-election next year, got a taste of what her colleagues have to look forward to. All six of her state offices in Maine were mobbed by protesters on Tuesday who insisted she vote to impeach and remove Donald Trump, according to the Portland Press Herald.
The grassroots organization Mainers for Accountable Leadership held rallies in Portland, Augusta, Bangor, Biddleford, Caribou, and Lewiston. These protests were organized in response to Collins’ meeting at the White House last week with Donald Trump, an effort seen as Trump’s attempt to reach out to the jurors in a future impeachment trial.
Faced with the very real possibility that he’s faced with removal, you can of course leave it to Trump to commit yet another crime in the process and flaunt it. His staffers have probably made him aware that Collins is a crucial swing vote and losing her in the upcoming impeachment hearings could mean losing a significant number of Senate Republicans as well. Right now, she’s got an approval rating of 35% in what is a fairly moderate state – much more moderate than her record of consistently voting with Trump. Senators in red states aren’t faring much better in donations or approval ratings, and seeing protests like the ones in Maine could be forcing them to face the fact that Trump doesn’t have a whole lot left to offer them.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making