To the Editor:
As a woman and a Mainer, I am offended that Sen. Susan Collins was excluded from the “working group” of 13 men who met secretly to draft the Senate version of the AHCA. Collins, long regarded as being reasonable, had publicly put forth a beginning proposal for replacing the ACA. Although I didn’t necessarily agree with her starting point, I respected her work and her transparency in providing the plan to the public. Her actions were true signs of leadership in our representative democracy.
As a woman and a Mainer, I am even more offended by Collins lack of leadership regarding Majority Leader McConnell’s plan for devising, and possibly passing, the Senate ACHA bill.
Collins expressed her “concerns” about the process, but she has not stated that what her party’s leadership is doing is wrong. That a small group from a single demographic (old, white, male and wealthy) is working in secret to craft a bill that affects the lives of all Americans is contrary to the values of Maine people and the values of our democracy. Yet our well-regarded senator has stood silently by, allowing her fellow Republicans to tarnish her reputation and irreparably damage our legislative process.
To quote Margaret Chase Smith, “Standing for right when it is unpopular is a true test of moral character.” Collins, with her silence, has shown her true moral character.