Senator Collins Tests the Waters

“That’s right, I’m finding it hard to forgive. So what are you gonna give me to help the process?”

Collins told colleagues at a small Senate prayer breakfast meeting last week that she still felt lingering resentment toward Democratic senators who campaigned against her in Maine.

She confessed that she had “trouble forgiving colleagues” who traveled to Maine and told voters she was “a Bush clone and called into question her ethics,” said a senator who attended the meeting.

Collins’s lingering resentment could emerge as a snag for Democratic leaders who expect her to side with them on many important votes.

Unless Democrats win a recount in Minnesota and a runoff in Georgia, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) will need at least two Republicans to side with his conference on procedural votes next year to overcome GOP filibusters.

Collins’s spokesman, Kevin Kelley, said his boss does not hold a grudge.

This is a shakedown. I have no doubt Collins was hurt by Democrats’ attacks during the campaign. But she is politically savvy enough to take advantage by signaling to Democrats that she’s willing to let bygones be bygones for the right price. The same offer is available to the Republicans, of course.

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~ by Gabriel Malor on November 25, 2008.

 
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