Sen. Susan Collins is correct that President Donald Trump was “way over the line” in calling for four congresswomen to go back to the countries he expects the public to believe they come from. It was inappropriate, however, for Collins to begin her statement by stating that she disagrees with the “views and comments” of those congresswomen.

When the president of the United States tells American citizens to go back to where they came from, he is not addressing their “views and comments.” He is attacking them for who they are. The line that he was “way over” is the line of racism. Why can’t Collins name that line and call him racist?

She should stand up for her constituents, of all races and views, by denouncing a president of her own party who denies what America is and who Americans are. And she should vote to condemn him for his racist attack on the very idea of American citizenship that, for the purpose of distorting the census count, he has recently pretended to value.

James Parakilas, Lewiston

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