Susan Collins

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Susan Collins

Susan M. Collins is the senior Senator for Maine.


Susan Margaret Collins was born in the small northern Maine city of Caribou on December 7, 1952. Her family runs a fifth-generation lumber business, founded by her ancestors in 1844, and operated today by two of her brothers. Each of Senator Collins’ parents has served as Mayor of Caribou, and her father served Maine as a State Senator.

In 1975, she graduated with magna cum laude honors from St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York, where she was also elected to the Phi Beta Kappa national academic society. After working for 12 years on the Capitol Hill staff of Maine Senator William Cohen, she joined the cabinet of Maine Governor John McKernan, Jr. in 1987 as Commissioner of Professional and Financial Regulation. After five years in that post, she then served as New England Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration from 1992 to 1993.[1]


In 1994, Senator Collins ran her first campaign for public office. She emerged from an eight-way Republican primary in June 1994 as the first woman in Maine history to win a major-party nomination for governor. She lost that fall’s general election, but remained committed to public service.

In December 1994, Senator Collins became the founding executive director of the Center for Family Business at Husson College in Bangor, Maine. She resigned in 1996 to run for the Senate seat being vacated by Senator Cohen. She went on to win both a contested Republican primary and a four-way general election later that year. In 2002, Senator Collins was reelected with 59 percent of the general-election vote. In 2008, Senator Collins was relected with 61 percent of the vote.[2]


Maine voters first elected Susan M. Collins to represent them in the United States Senate in 1996. She was reelected in 2002 and 2008. She has earned a national reputation as a thoughtful, effective legislator, who works across party lines to seek consensus on our nation’s most important issues. Senator Collins is the 15th woman in history to be elected to the Senate in her own right.[3]


Senator Collins is Ranking Member and former Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Department of Homeland Security and is the Senate’s chief oversight committee. She also serves on the Appropriations Committee, Armed Services Committee, and is a member of the Special Committee on Aging. Previously, she served for six years on the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. Senator Collins was also the first freshman Senator ever to lead the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.[4]

Leftist intern

In 2009 Benjamin T. Rautenberg, a 2006 Cape Elizabeth High School graduate, was namedto the spring-semester dean’s list at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pa. Ben, who is majoring in political science, is working asa summer intern for Sen. Susan Collins in her Washington, D.C., office. He is the son of Lynne Cross and Jay Cross of Cape Elizabeth and Jeff Rautenberg of Hampton, N.H.[5]

Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015

S 299, the Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015, principal sponsors are Sens. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., and Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.[6]

By May 20, it had accumulated 33 co-sponsors, mostly Democrats, but including two Independents, and 5 Republicans - Jerry Moran, Mike Enzi, John Boozman, Susan Collins, and Rand Paul. [7]

IAPAC money

Senator Susan Collins received money from the Iranian American Political Action Committee during the 2008, 2010, 2012 election cycles.[8]

"Hate speech" resolution

On April 4, 2017, the US Senate passed Senate Resolution 118, "Condemning hate crime and any other form of racism, religious or ethnic bias, discrimination, incitement to violence, or animus targeting a minority in the United States". The resolution was drafted by a Muslim organization, EmgageUSA (formerly EmergeUSA) and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC). On April 6, 2017, EmgageUSA wrote the following on their Facebook page:

"Thanks to the hard work of Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Dianne Feinstein, Senator Susan Collins and Senator Kamala Harris we have achieved the approval of Senate Resolution 118, an anti-hate crimes bill drafted by Emerge-USA. It is days like this that Americans are reminded of this country's founding principles: equal opportunity, freedom, justice. We are proud to help support the protection of these rights #amoreperfectunion #theamericandream".

Senate Resolution 118 calls on...

"...Federal law enforcement officials, working with State and local officials... to expeditiously investigate all credible reports of hate crimes and incidents and threats against minorities in the United States and to hold the perpetrators of those crimes, incidents, or threats accountable and bring the perpetrators to justice; encourages the Department of Justice and other Federal agencies to work to improve the reporting of hate crimes; and... encourages the development of an interagency task force led by the Attorney General to collaborate on the development of effective strategies and efforts to detect and deter hate crime in order to protect minority communities..."

The resolution refers to hate crimes against Muslims, Jews, African-Americans, Hindus, and Sikhs and was sponsored by Senator Kamala Harris and co-sponsored by Senator Marco Rubio, Senator Dianne Feinstein, and Senator Susan Collins.[9]

The original drafter of the resolution was Wa'el Alzayat of EmergeUSA.[10]

Maine Peoples Alliance lobbying