To the Editor:

In her most recent TV ad, Sara Gideon looks like the ideal candidate. She is smooth, polished and attractive with poise and a prestigious university education in public policy.  She is self-confident and well spoken in the elite establishment parlance of beltway Washington, D.C., even “presidential” by some standards. For all her political attractiveness, what are Speaker Gideon’s actual accomplishments?  With the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, she dismissed the legislature and has effectively copped out for the past 111 days, while Maine and our economy have tanked.  When Sen. Jeff Timberlake challenged her to reopen the legislature, she begged off, claiming she was “monitoring the crisis.” Not much help there. Maine has problems, but Sara Gideon is not up to solving them.

Contrast this with Senator Susan Collins, who is a member of the Select Committee on Intelligence, Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, Subcommittee on the Food and Drug Administration, Subcommittee on Justice and Subcommittee on the Department of Defense.

She instituted and chairs the Diabetes Caucus, she is also a senior member of the Appropriations Committee charged with federal fiscal policy and the allocation of federal funds like those from the CARES Act that she co-wrote and sponsored. Maddeningly, $1.25 billion of funds disbursed to Maine are still sitting in limbo, awaiting distribution while Governor Mills and Speaker Gideon dither.

Speaker Gideon complains about Senator Collins accepting campaign funds from pharmaceutical company PACs. She fails to admit accepting such funds herself. Furthermore, she is careful not to tell us that she was fined by the Federal Election Board for fraudulently misusing them for her own personal use, a crime under federal law.

What will Sara Gideon do for us in Washington?  As a freshman senator, she will be completely beholden to Chuck Schumer for committee appointments, PAC and campaign funds, office space and staff and even an operating budget. A vote for Sara Gideon is a vote for Chuck Schumer whose only interest in Maine would be furthering his own uber-left agenda.

David Reed
West Rockport

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