Entries in Susan Collins (6)


Republicans Express Skepticism Following Obama's Address

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Given the statements made about President Obama's second inaugural address, it appears that he won't have an easy go of it with GOP lawmakers this term either.

Some prominent Republicans lawmakers criticized Obama’s inaugural address on Monday, saying he failed to reach out to their party.

Arizona Sen. John McCain, the 2008 GOP presidential nominee, said afterwards, "This is the eighth [inauguration] that I've been to and always there's been a portion of the speech where [the president says] 'I reach out my hand because we need to work together.’  That wasn't in this speech."

Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, who has been mentioned as a possible candidate for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, remarked that Obama "wasn't doing the kind of outreach that he needs to do if he wants to get things accomplished in a second term."

Meanwhile, Maine Sen. Susan Collins gave the speech a mixed review, saying it sounded partisan on one hand but that she'll give the president the benefit of the doubt that he'll at least try to meet Republicans half-way.

However, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, an outspoken critic of the president during his first term, sounded genuinely surprised in a good way about the address.

While he heard a few things conservatives will outright reject, Gingrich added, "95 percent of the speech, I thought, was classically American, you know, emphasizing hard work and emphasizing self-reliance, emphasizing doing things together."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Senator Says It’s ‘Imperative’ Petraeus Still Testifies

United States Senate(WASHINGTON) -- Sen. Susan Collins on Tuesday said it is “absolutely imperative” that David Petraeus should still testify on the attack in Benghazi, Libya, despite his resignation as CIA director due to his affair.

“There are so many unanswered questions at this point,” Collins, R-Maine, said outside her office Tuesday morning.  “I will say that it is absolutely imperative that Gen. Petraeus come and testify.  He was CIA director at the time of the attack.  He visited Libya after the attack.  He has a great deal of information that we need in order to understand what went wrong.”

Petraeus was to testify Thursday on Benghazi in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee.  Acting CIA Director Mike Morrell will now be testifying in his place, but that has not stopped the calls on the Hill for Petraeus himself to testify on Benghazi.

“I think we should go ahead with Mike Morell and the way it is now set up,” Sen. Diane Feinstein, chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said on MSNBC Monday.  “But I also think that the community should know that this is not sufficient.  And I have no doubt now that we will need to talk with David Petraeus and we will likely do that in closed session but it will be done one way or the other.”

Collins, ranking member of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security, said on Tuesday she is “puzzled” by much of what has occurred in the FBI investigation into Petraeus’ affair and specifically mentioned that it is concerning that his mistress, Paula Broadwell, may have had access to classified information.

When asked if the FBI informed the White House soon enough of the investigation, Collins said there “does seem like there was an inordinate amount of time that passed,” but added that without all the facts yet she doesn’t want to reach any kind of conclusion.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Senate: Hold That Vote, We Have a Party to Attend

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The highway bill will have to wait; senators, after all, have a party to get to Tuesday night.

Votes on the $109 billion federal highway bill has been stopped Tuesday in the Senate so that senators can attend the engagement party of one of their own, Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine.

“There is a very important event tonight that does not mean much to anyone outside of the Senate family, but to us being able to recognize Susan Collins on a very special occasion in her life,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., announced early Tuesday evening on the Senate floor. “We’re going to leave here so that people that want to go to that event can do that.”

Last month, 59-year-old Senator Collins became engaged to Thomas Daffron, chief operating officer of Jefferson Consulting Group, a lobbying firm in Washington, D.C. A small, private ceremony is being planned in Maine this summer.

Federal highway funds are set to expire on March 31, and for weeks the Senate has been debating over the particulars of the bill to extend funding. After more than 15 amendments, the bill inched closer to passage Tuesday. Many thought that with the bill having just a few amendments left to vote for, final passage could come Tuesday night.

But not anymore.

With some senators attending the soiree Tuesay, Reid announced that they will finish the bill Wednesday. The Senate will hold three or four more votes on amendments to complete the bill, with final passage expected after that.

That is, if the senators have no other parties to attend.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Maine Senator Susan Collins Engaged This Week

United States Senate(WASHINGTON) -- A wedding is in the works for Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine.

On Sunday, the 59-year-old senator became engaged for the first time to Thomas Daffron, chief operating officer of Jefferson Consulting Group, a lobbyist firm in Washington, D.C.

While a date has not been set and the senator will have to juggle Congress' summer recess schedule, a “small, private” ceremony is being planned in Maine this summer, Collin’s Senate office says.

“Senator Collins and Mr. Daffron are very happy and they look forward to celebrating this wonderful occasion with their families,” said Kevin Kelley, spokesman for Senator Collins, said in a statement.

Daffron also has been involved in Republican politics for a long time and has served as chief of staff to former Republican senators Bill Cohen of Maine and Fred Thompson of Tennessee. He served as chief of staff to Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and was the national campaign manager for the presidential campaign of Elizabeth Dole.

Collins and Daffron first met in the 70′s while they both worked  for then Sen. Bill Cohen, where Collins worked as a legislative assistant.  They remained friends through the years and started dating a few years ago.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


GOP Address: America Needs a 'Time Out' from Over-Regulating

United States Senate(WASHINGTON) -- Sen. Susan Collins of Maine says excessive and costly regulations imposed by the federal government are discouraging U.S. job creation.

After asking employers about the conditions needed to create more jobs, Collins says in the Republican address, "No matter the size of their business or the size of their workforce," they need for the government to stop enforcing "crushing new regulations."

"Over-regulation is hurting our economy; unfortunately, the problem is only growing worse.  Right now, federal agencies are at work on more than 4,200 new rules, 845 of which affects small businesses, the engine of job creation.  More than 100 have an economic impact of more than $100 million each," Collin says.

Calling some policies "just plain silly," such as one which prohibited a company from telling consumers about the health benefits of nuts, and claimed the company was marketing the nuts as a drug, Collins says some rules present more serious consequences. Collins wants to see Washington take a "time out" from regulations that hurt the economy and consider the long-term costs and benefits of these policies before enforcing them.

A new rule on emissions from boilers, introduced by the EPA, would cost the private sector both jobs and billions of dollars, Sen. Collins says.  

"That EPA rule on boilers is a good example of why we need a regulatory time out.  If it went into effect as written, a recent study estimates that this rule, along with other pending regulations, could cause 36 pulp and paper mills across the country to close.  That would put more than 20,000 Americans out of work -- 18 percent of that industry's workforce."  

And, she adds, once the mills are closed suppliers would also have to resort to lay-offs.  In all, Collins says 90,000 Americans would lose jobs because of the EPA's regulation.  Furthermore, "we'd be strengthening the economies of other countries like China, India and Brazil," because people and businesses would look to them for paper.

Over-regulation is why Collins says Republicans want to stop federal agencies from imposing new policies "without thoroughy considering their costs and benefits."  Many Republicans, she continues, have also "called for a one-year moratorium on certain costly new rules."

"American businesses need pro-growth policies that will end the uncertainty and kick-start hiring and investment," Collins says.

"We need a time out from excessive regulations so that America can get back to work."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


START Picks Up Two Key Republican Votes

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The Obama administration and Senate Democrats on Friday picked up two important Republican votes for the New START nuclear treaty with Russia when Maine senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins threw their support behind the pact.

The backing of Snowe and Collins, the two moderate GOP lawmakers from Maine, means three Republican senators have now said they will vote for the treaty. Sen. Dick Lugar of Indiana, the top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, was the first.

The treaty must receive 67 votes for Senate ratification, so Democrats will need to secure more GOP support to pass the pact.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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