Anthony Emerson of Portland wrote a letter (a response to another letter) saying that Maine’s senators are casting their votes the way most people want.

Neither he nor I have any statistical evidence to support or refute that statement. Mr. Emerson, a Democrat, goes on to say that he voted for Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins because they are nonpartisan in their votes.

The key to that statement is that he is a Democrat, but Snowe and Collins are running as Republicans. As Republicans, we have the right to expect our senators to vote according to Republican values such as smaller government and conservative spending.

Often we hear the name of Margaret Chase Smith, known for her voting independence, invoked in connection with our current senators. There is, however, one very big difference between Smith and Snowe and Collins: Smith never announced her vote in advance. Her vote was based on conviction and was not cast with an eye toward re-election.

Both Snowe and Collins claim to espouse conservative spending values, saying that we should never spend more than we can pay. Yet time after time they cast votes for budget-busting programs which we cannot pay for and cannot afford.

Some have called our senators RINOs (Republican in Name Only), and more and more I have come to agree with that assessment. I do not want them to vote in a partisan manner, but I do want them to uphold their party’s values.

George Wibberly

Topsham

When we travel outside the state, we meet people from all walks of life and across the political spectrum. When they hear we are from Maine, they inevitably say, “Your two senators are great. I wish there were more like them.”

This comes from people who may not agree with Snowe and Collins on all issues but appreciate their approach to the serious problems facing our country, trying to find responsible solutions versus political posturing. This is in the great tradition of Maine senators from Margaret Chase Smith and Bill Cohen to Ed Muskie and George Mitchell.

Yes, indeed, I wish there were more senators like them.

Anne B. Pringle

Portland

I read with great interest your editorial from Sept. 5 titled “Maine’s moderates should use their clout.”

Aside from obviously shilling for Sen. Snowe, there is a flaw in your basic premise. Although you don’t phrase it exactly this way, you’re basically saying that Republicans in Congress should have ignored their conscience and voted for the purported health care and financial reform bills, despite the fact that even senior leadership didn’t know what was in them. (See Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s comment in regards to the health care bill that “we have to pass it to find out what’s in it.”)

Now the federal government controls more than 60 percent of our economy, and no one has any idea what is going to come out of any of it.

Also your sentence, “We may not always agree with their votes, but as Mainers, we like to see that they make them” is nothing short of ridiculous. You’re saying the people of Maine don’t care about what’s right or wrong, we just want to see our senators and congressmen be willing to “reach across party lines.”

This is patently absurd. Right is right and wrong is wrong, and we, as Mainers, would like to see, and deserve to have, leaders who will stick to their principles and not sell out because they got a phone call from a high-ranking member of the opposite party (see Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass.).

Luckily for us, just such a person is running for Senate in 2012, and I strongly encourage all Mainers to support Scott D’Amboise for Senate in 2012. Thank you.

Andrew Seavy

Topsham

I was not impressed by the Sunday Telegram puff pieces about Sen. Collins Aug. 29. and Sen. Snowe Sept. 5. These senators were sent to Washington to represent the people of Maine and to be good stewards of our tax monies.

Over the past two years they have done neither. Both Collins and Snowe supported every kind of bailout that came down the pike, they supported a $800 billion pork-laden stimulus plan that stimulated nothing but Democratic political supporters, and they supported using taxpayer money for people to buy cars, buy houses, improve their homes and support a failing mortgage bailout plan.

In addition, they voted for a “financial regulation” plan that puts undue burdens on financial institutions without solving the “too big to fail” or the insolvency of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. They also voted for a $26 billion “no name bill” that bails out overpaid public employees.

The public is fed up with out-of-control deficits, wall-to-wall bailouts, burdensome government regulation, joblessness, federal employees that earn twice that of the private sector and an economy in a death spiral.

Snowe and Collins have been in Washington too long, since they obviously don’t see this happening. Instead they have become sycophants of a socialist progressive movement that will destroy this country with out-of-control spending and an unsolvable burden of debt.

Martin Achilles

Edgecomb

Civic Center planning still far from adequate

“As members of the Cumberland County Civic Center Joint Task Force anxiously await a consultant’s economic analysis to guide their decision-making, county and business leaders say a clear consensus is forming.”

That was part of an article by Robert M. Cook, a Mainebiz staff reporter.

Really? Are you really certain this time? Are you actually going to make a decision? Just another example of Cumberland County and the city of Portland’s failure to act when an opportunity presented itself. Back in 1999, The Libra Foundation offered $20 million and a 7-acre land parcel located in Bayside to develop a new state-of-the-art civic arena.

But no, the idea was rejected. Apparently they felt they had a better idea. But here we are 11 years later, 10 different studies from 14 different consultants and still no definitive plan! To spend $41 million on an outdated and archaic facility is absolutely ludicrous.

Maybe the board of trustees could learn something from the city of Manchester, N.H., which seems to have its act together and has a money-making and self-supporting arena which draws all of the top-notch artists and events.

Once again Portland/Cumberland County is left in the dust with a crumbling edifice that is the Cumberland County Civic Center. Shame on you!

Joe Bureau

Scarborough