What Changed Susan? Senator Collins Said in 1999 “Direct Testimony Would Be Most Helpful” But Now Sides With McConnell to Move Forward Without Witnesses

McConnell-Collins Trial Rules Do Not Include “Commitment to Calling Witnesses or Admitting New Evidence

Collins Refuses to Meet the Standard She Set 20 Years Ago to Get to the Truth

In another striking departure from the standard she set 20 years ago, Senator Susan Collins is supporting Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s decision to move forward on impeachment without hearing from witnesses. The McConnell-Collins rules do not include any “commitment to calling witnesses or admitting new evidence,” — something Senator Collins supported in 1998 and 1999 and was vocal about demanding as a part of the Senate process. 

Today, WhatChangedSusan.com is featuring more of her statements setting a bar for fairness that Senator Collins now refuses to meet:

Collins: “Direct testimony would be most helpful.”

[Los Angeles Times, 12/31/98]

Collins: “I am concerned about proposals to immediately move to dismiss the charges before we even hear arguments and before we hear some key witnesses.”

[Fox News Network, The Crier Report, 1/5/99]

The comments echo others Senator Collins made then, including, “I need more evidence. I need witnesses and further evidence to guide me to the right destination, to get to the truth,” which the project WhatChangedSusan.com highlighted in its launch. 

When asked about her support for a trial without witnesses and other key evidence, Collins complained about the scrutiny she continues to face as justification for abandoning the positions she once held. 

“Her decision to support Mitch McConnell and move forward without witnesses shows Senator Collins isn’t holding the Senate or herself to the same standard she set back then,” said DSCC spokesperson Stewart Boss. “Instead of ‘grousing,’ Senator Collins should own up to the fact that she should have called for witnesses and evidence but refused and explain to the people of Maine what changed.”

The DSCC launched WhatChangedSusan.com to highlight Senator Collins’ alignment with Mitch McConnell and refusal to set the same standards for a fair impeachment process that she did in 1999. WhatChangedSusan.com will be updated regularly as the impeachment process unfolds. 


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