Another day, another instance of breathtaking hypocrisy from Sen. Susan Collins – this time at the expense of military families. The senator’s latest betrayal follows the same tiresome pattern that has become all too familiar to Mainers: Say the right thing; vote the wrong way; rinse and repeat.

Last Wednesday, Collins announced that she would join a bipartisan effort to block President Trump from circumventing the express will of Congress by diverting $8 billion from other priorities to pay for a border wall (a xenophobic vanity metaphor for which someone once told me that Mexico would be footing the bill). For her heroic news release, she earned plaudits from the saner corners of the polity. The sun set, the sun rose and on Thursday Collins cast the decisive vote to do precisely the opposite – striking down an amendment that would have stopped the president from ransacking billions already committed to, among other vital efforts, the well-being of our nation’s military families.

Mainers aren’t surprised by this; we caught on to the Collins Shuffle long ago. I would only ask that the senator put a bit more effort into the game, the way she did back in the old days.

When she abandoned Maine values to pass tax cuts for millionaires, or when she doomed the future of reproductive rights by going to bat for Justice Brett Kavanaugh – those were Collins at her duplicitous best. I’m concerned that the senator has lost a step, and is now just phoning her hypocrisy in.

Dan Cluchey

Portland

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