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Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine has long enjoyed being described as a moderate in the national and local media, although any close observer knows that when it counts, Collins most often sides with her party. Collins was the first chair of the Homeland Security Committee, and now is the minority lead on it, and as such takes an active role in foreign affairs.

It is under that guise that Collins appears to be politicking in Massachusetts.

After meeting yesterday, Collins blasted UN Ambassador Susan Rice, who many expect President Obama will nominate as the next Secretary of State (Hillary Clinton is expected to step down in January). Echoing the complaints of her Republican colleagues, Collins went further, insinuating that Rice may have been in some way culpable for the bombings of the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania:

"Those bombings in 1998 resulted in the loss of life of 12 Americans as well as many other foreign nationals, and 4,000 people were injured,” Collins told reporters after her hourlong, closed-door meeting with Rice.

“And what troubles me so much is that the Benghazi attacks echoes the attacks on those embassies in 1998 when Susan Rice was head of the African region for our State Department. … She had to be aware of the general threat assessment and of the ambassadors’ request for more security.”

Collins conveniently avoids mentioning 13 attacks on US diplomatic missions that occurred between 1998 and the Benghazi attack in August.

But Collins again goes further than her colleagues by actually recommending someone should could support:

“I think John Kerry would be an excellent appointment and would be easily confirmed by his colleagues,” Collins said.
Ahh yes: if Sen. John Kerry were to go to State, that would force a special election to fill his now vacant seat, providing an opportunity for soon-to-be former Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA) to rejoin the Senate. Collins campaigned with Brown earlier this year.

It is doubtful that this will tarnish the image that the main stream media has of Collins. My guess is that a few outlets will actually report this as another example of Collins playing the moderate, suggesting to the President a compromise, while ignoring the politicking behind it.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Have you actually listened to her speak (8+ / 0-)

    Aside from how annoying her voice is, everything that comes out is gobbeldy-gook. How anyone could vote for her for anything, is totatlly beyond me. An effort really needs to be started now to frame her for what she is, an extereme conservative who always puts the interests of right wing craziness and party ahead of the national good.

    •  I live in Maine - she has a speech impediment (4+ / 0-)

      (like I do) so we cut her some slack on her manner of speaking. The words that she chooses, well...

      Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

      by Spud1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 05:38:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  what kind of impediment (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        She speaks fine except she   she talks in slow motion and sounds like she is about to cry. I think the shine may be off Collins when she runs again.
        She is starting to act as right wing as the rest of her buddies.

        •  The slow motion is a way to get the words out. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gchaucer2, chancew, CuriousBoston

          It's one of the tricks I employ with my own stammer. Another is having a large vocabulary to find a similar word to the one I'm having difficulty actually speaking. Fun stuff!

          Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

          by Spud1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:11:01 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  And yet another (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Spud1, Phil S 33, CuriousBoston

            educational point from a member of this community.  Thank you, Spud1.  

            Also, too -- NPR had her on this a.m. -- and let her spew while referring to her as a moderate -- e.g. -- even the moderates are getting on the bandwagon!

            Previously NPR gave McCain, Graham and Ayotte soundbites a platform with zero countering their idiocy.

            It is the only news station I can get on the radio here in my geological bowl.  Soooo, I'm stuck with it with my coffee.

            Thanks for the diary.

            " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

            by gchaucer2 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:20:19 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  Kerry is the talking point of the day (8+ / 0-)

    McCain, Barrasso and Collins all recommended him for the post after eviscerating Rice yesterday.

    They are telegraphing their playbook again.

  •  Sorry for John but (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Spud1, JamieG from Md

    their demogiguery means Obama has to nominate Rice.  It 's about two things.  Scott Brown and OBL.  They are trying to undermine Obama on AQ and killing AOBL.  Rs want their GWOT back to campaign against Demean as weak.

    I'm glad Barack Obama is our President.

    by TomP on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 05:15:00 AM PST

  •  obviously this is a scheme (5+ / 0-)

    to give scott brown another chance to run.  I think we shouldn't fall for it.  I am sure that we can find another secretary of defense other than Kerry.  Rice should be secretary of state.

    "The real wealth of a nation consists of the contributions of its people and nature." -- Rianne Eisler

    by noofsh on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 05:19:10 AM PST

    •  Not sure Brown can win again (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dirk McQuigley, Spud1, LaurenMonica

      They just voted him out and there are lots of candidates that can run a good statewide campaign. In fact if he resigned Patrick could appoint a temporary senator, maybe  Barney Frank could go to the senate for a few months to irritate the right.
      I think Kerry is ready to leave the senate and may not even want to run again in 2014.

      •  Senator Barney Frank has a nice ring to it (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Spud1, CuriousBoston, TomFromNJ

        Historic too. But in the parlance of Joe Biden, he'd be a pretty good fucking senator.

      •  I don't think Brown can win again either (0+ / 0-)

        and while I don't profess to have anything but a cursory knowledge of the political scene in the Bay State, he obviously would seem to be the Republican front-runner.

        Are there any Mass Dems that are good candidates? I ask because here in Maine there are not any big names that can provide a credible challenge to Collins in 2014 (it does not seem likely that either Chellie or Hannah Pingree will run).

        Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

        by Spud1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:31:55 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  They can also, you know, change the law again... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          They've done it twice now in MA (both the special election law in 2004 and then again in 2009 so that Paul Kirk could be named as interim Senator and provide a key vote to pass Obamacare), so they could do it again. And they have a good excuse, because with Kerry's seat up in 2014 anyway, they could just go, "Why spend all this money on a special election when the seat is just up again in less than two years anyway? Why not just appoint someone to fill out the rest of the term and just have the regular scheduled election?"

          •  That's not very likely. The Dems don't want (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            a repeat of the uproar that happened the last time they changed the rules.  This alienated a lot of people and contributed, at least in part, to Brown's upset win.

            "Hope, not despair, is the fuel for action." - William Manchester

            by brae70 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:58:10 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  "Someone" is floating Chuck Hagel's name (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      ..for SecDef.

      I don't know enough about the guy to have an informed opinion other than that he's a Republican, but that's strike-one in my book.

      Maybe one day the Fourth Estate will take their jobs seriously. Or not..

      by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:13:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Actually, Hagel as SOD would be just fine (3+ / 0-)

        You forget that Hagel is an Obama supporter (at least in 2008; I don't recall him endorsing anyone publically this time around) and has largely broken with the GOP these days (though, unlike the likes of Chafee and Crist, he still calls himself a Republican). I've got no problems with him.

        Of course, the SOD whispering is rather premature, since, unlike Hillary, Panetta has made no indication that he's leaving anytime soon.

  •  massachusetts (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NYFM, Spud1

    it's spelled wrong in your diary header.

    "Kossacks are held to a higher standard. Like Hebrew National hot dogs." - blueaardvark

    by louisev on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 05:22:20 AM PST

  •  Please Proceed Senator Collins (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Spud1, Eikyu Saha

    These assholes are heading for a moment that will eliminate the phrase "joseph welch moment" from the political lexicon. It will be replaced by 'Susan Rice moment" as she testifies before hostile members of the GOP for her confirmation hearings.  She will win the public to her side and it will further marginilise the GOP as they try to gain stature by winning the FOX news cycle.

    Please proceed GOP Senators.

    •  And someone needs to remind her, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Spud1, Leo Flinnwood

      and question her, about her own role in the slaughter of four thousand U.S. military personnel in Iraq, plus the slaughter of probably many times that number of military contractors, plus the slaughter of many times even that number when it comes to the slaughter of civilians -- children, mothers, fathers, grandparents -- in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Or how about the illegal rendition and torture programs that she happily closed her eyes and ears to?  Or her failure to question any of the many, many lies that caused it to happen in the first place?  

      So, Ms. Collins, how many people died on your watch?  How many lies were told on your watch?  Why were you silent when your party, with your support, initiated the most extensive war crime of the twenty-first century?  

  •  Here's a good example of the media at work (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Look at the headline the San Jose Mercury News slapped on the AP report:

    Moderate GOP Sen. Susan Collins joins colleagues in expressing doubts about Rice

    Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

    by Spud1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 05:40:23 AM PST

  •  In a somewhat unusual event, Collins is taking it (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pamelabrown, Scarce, rebereads, gchaucer2

    on the chin in the comments section to this story in the Bangor Daily News.

    Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

    by Spud1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 05:45:15 AM PST

  •  Actually Susie campaigned w him earlier this month (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    U.S. Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., left, speaks with U.S. Senator Susan Collins, R-Maine, right, while riding on a Brown campaign bus in Milford, Mass., Thursday, Nov. 1, 2012.

  •  Almost makes me wonder if (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Kerry isn't quietly behind the scenes working with these folks.

    Hate to say it, but honestly, I've never seen anything quite like this; it's as if a bunch of Senators are pushing for a win-win with a friend (and Kerry at least used to be great friends with McCain and Collins).

    It is bizarre - and at this point, Obama should nominate Rice and fight for her. Period. She did nothing to deserve this treatment from this self-appointed rulers.

  •  Beginning to finally think (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ..that the slightly less loony members or the party of Loony-Toons think that Scott Brown has a shot at Kerry's seat, and hence the pile-on.

    Because freedom. Or something.

    Crash McBittergeez? Still convinced it's a grudge.

    Maybe one day the Fourth Estate will take their jobs seriously. Or not..

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:09:25 AM PST

  •  Massachusetts can also change the law...again (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Spud1, LaurenMonica, justintime

    The law was changed in 2004 in case Kerry won. The law was changed back in 2009 when Teddy died. Republicans can cry all they want but the fact is there is an easy way to guarantee that Scott Brown can't get the seat: change the law again and appoint someone for the remainder of Kerry's term which expires after 2014. Brown can't beat the A team candidate Deval Patrick. He can't beat the B team candidate Mike Capuano. He can't beat the Kennedy candidate, Joe. And, assuming he is eligible as a resident still even though he now teaches at Cal Berkeley, Robert Reich would kick his ass.

    He's not facing Martha Coakley again. The election won't be held in January on a day when the North Shore (where I live) received over a foot of snow. Not to mention Brown trashed his reputation with his scorched earth campaign which exposed him as a misogynistic racist asshole.

    •  Thanks for this assessment n/t (0+ / 0-)

      Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

      by Spud1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:33:28 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Thank you for being the voice of Reason! Im so (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      tired of watching Democrats setting their hair on fire over Scott Brown.

      Unlike in 2010, Kerry is still well alive to put his weight on any Democratic candidate.

      And many Ds didnt like Coackley because she announced her bid too soon after Ted Kennedy died.

      "Rick Perry talks a lot and he's not very bright. And that's a combination I like in Republicans." --- James Carville

      by LaurenMonica on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:40:24 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  They could, but I don't agree that they will. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      See my comment above.  Not to say that all of the people you mentioned wouldn't be great candidates.  

      "Hope, not despair, is the fuel for action." - William Manchester

      by brae70 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 07:02:18 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  And his wife isn't a well-known local TV (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      reporter anymore. His daughter isn't playing basketball for Boston College, or in the finals of Fox's American Idol, anymore.

      And he won't be a surprise anymore. The tea party is a vague bad memory around here.

      And there is no way he can compete on the ground. Mass. Dems have crushed the GOP with GOTV in the last two elections, ask John Tierney.

      Both Ways Brown lost the election when he lost Mayor "I'm for ya Martha - wink wink - no worries" Menino. Helluva difference between Boston in January 2010 and November 2012. Highest turnout since 1964, and Warren getting 75%.

      If Martha had gotten that Brown would be a nobody real estate lawyer in Wrentham, again, instead of an ex-Senator real estate lawyer in Wrentham.

      There are those that look at things the way they are, and ask why? I dream of things that never were, and ask why not? - Robert Kennedy

      by BobBlueMass on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 07:41:31 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Trudy Rubin has an interesting article arguing for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    John Kerry and against Rice (for other reasons- temperament and experience as compared to Kerry). I'd like to see Chuck Hagel, except that Republicans (as bullies) would see that as reason to be even more moronic. It worked! We got Connie (Oops, Susan).

    "A young man who wishes to remain a sound Atheist cannot be too careful of his reading. There are traps everywhere ". C. S. Lewis

    by TofG on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:22:29 AM PST

  •  More about her facing a primary from TeaBagger (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Jester, Spud1

    than anything

    Stop giving GOP credits if being the second coming of Magneto on evil plotting.

    Like Collins, Graham wants to save his ass in 2014. As for the rest of their caucus its business as well: Working hard to make Pres. Obama fail.

    If they could they would come out to blast Bo the dog.

    "Rick Perry talks a lot and he's not very bright. And that's a combination I like in Republicans." --- James Carville

    by LaurenMonica on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 06:37:23 AM PST

    •  Certainly this is of some concern and (0+ / 0-)

      Collins has her detractors, but looking over the GOP field here it's hard to see any serious primary challenger for her in 2014. Snowe had a primary challenger this year, which she would have brushed aside with out even trying. Kevin Raye, the former Maine Senate president and former chief of staff for Snowe, easily defeated the Tea Party challenger he faced in the GOP primary for the 2nd District race.

      There is also a governor's race here in 2014, and while Gov. Paul LePage is well liked by most Republicans, I don't see him seeking re-election. If that seat is open, then for sure Collins will not see a primary challenge.

      Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

      by Spud1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 08:54:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think Noam Chomsky would be a good choice..... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ... as the next Sec State. So Republican scumbags, your choice is Susan Rice OR Noam Chomsky.... Pick one. ;P

    But Kerry is staying senator, period, for all you know.

    Meantime we need to field an unbeatable Dem candidate for MA Sen in advance.... I nominate Marty Meehan, as someone who would sail through a special election statewide.

    I'd rather Kerry by Sec Def, if anything. I think his tie has passed for any gov service, but if stuck with him, that would make more sense.

    With the Palestinians getting UN recognition today, we need a serious diplomat in charge of State in the coming years, I would prefer Hillary stay for two more years personally, your nation needs you dear.

  •  GGRRR. Like Scott Brown, my pretty? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Tempted. Oh, tempted. Lost my water pail.

    2012-2016 President Obama, Vice President Biden, Senator Warren. For a LIFETIME, federal judges. Get the filibuster changed. Steamroll.

    by CuriousBoston on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 07:44:22 AM PST

  •  Amy Fried, a professor at UMaine, has this (0+ / 0-)

    take on Collins and Rice that is worth the read.

    Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

    by Spud1 on Thu Nov 29, 2012 at 08:39:49 AM PST

  •  in the end its up to us here in ma (0+ / 0-)

    If senator centerfold wants to try again - we're ready this time!

    Women are 51% of the population yet are represented in congress by barely 17%! Until our representation reflects the population, we risk sliding backwards .....

    by 51percent on Sat Dec 01, 2012 at 08:19:19 PM PST

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