Could Collins Continue Imperfect Second Amendment Defense?
Article first appeared on Ammoland.com
Maine – -(AmmoLand.com)- Susan Collins may not be one of the most-liked Senators among Second Amendment supporters. That being said, she has posted a mostly solid record in defense of our rights, albeit with some recent blemishes. Still, when all things are considered, Second Amendment supporters ought to give her another six years.
Collins has been in the Senate since 1996, and until this year, she’s generally been winning elections in Maine without breaking much of a sweat, even in years that weren’t that good for Republicans. In 1996, she won her first term with a 5.3 percent margin while Bill Clinton beat Bob Dole by roughly 21 points in that state. In 2008, while Obama won Maine by 17 points, she beat Tom Allen by just under 23 points.
She has generally opposed restrictions on our right to keep and bear arms. She did buy into a “watch list” prohibition, though, and also backed a “universal” background check bill in the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting. That said, she has voted against gun and magazine bans.
She is currently facing a race against Sara Gideon. Gideon’s campaign site is silent on our right to keep and bears arms. However, she has made statements calling for “smart gun safety measures.” She also supports magazine restrictions. That alone makes Gideon a downgrade over the occasionally frustrating Collins.
When it comes to the “big picture” issues, though, helping Collins hold on for her fifth term is something Second Amendment supporters should make a priority. For starters, Collins has voted to confirm many pro-Second Amendment judges. Putting aside disagreements on non-gun issues, this is a major reason for a Second Amendment supporter to pull the lever for her. Keeping the confirmation machine rolling for the next two to four years could decisively shift the legal and political landscape in favor of our rights for a generation or two. This is much better than what Second Amendment supporters get from the likes of Jon Tester.
The first vote Collins would cast in the Senate is just as important: If Sara Gideon is in Washington, she would vote to make Charles Schumer the Senate Majority Leader. Susan Collins, though, would vote against Schumer in her first vote of the 117th Congress. Having to pick between Chuck Grassley and Lindsey Graham as Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman is a much better situation than worrying about whether Sheldon Whitehouse or Dianne Feinstein holding that post.
Maine has been trending in a more pro-Second Amendment direction at the Presidential level. In 2016, there was a three-point gap in the statewide vote between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. You can check out the campaign site for Senator Collins here. As always, it is also a good idea to support NRA’s Political Victory Fund to ensure the election and re-election of pro-Second Amendment candidates at all levels.
About Harold Hutchison
Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post, Strategypage.com, and other national websites.