Here’s why Sara Gideon did even worse than you thought last night

We all know Sara Gideon stumbled during her first live, statewide debate last night, particularly when she couldn’t answer a question about whether she would have voted to confirm the current Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.

One of the reasons Gideon was not prepared is because she refused to participate in nearly every debate during the primary. She has hidden behind millions of dollars of slick television marketing and invitation-only appearances where questions are pre-prepared.  So, when it came time to demonstrate her depth of knowledge… she couldn’t go outside the talking points prepared by her campaign manager, New York Senator Chuck Schumer.

This was many Mainers’ first chance to hear directly from Gideon … 

Her far left positions, her constantly untruthful campaign approach, and her bedrock principle of saying one thing and doing another, were all on display for a new audience.

Here’s a short list of what many Mainers learned for the first time last night:

  1. Gideon has raised tens of millions of dollars for her Senate campaign, and claims to support working Mainers - but the Portland Press Herald reports that Gideon doesn't pay her interns.  Senator Collins does because she believes young people deserve the same opportunity, regardless of their family’s financial background.

  2. Gideon is running ads attempting to scam seniors into thinking Senator Collins would cut Medicare and Social Security. Yet, as Chairman of the Senate Aging Committee, Senator Collins has led efforts to save and improve both critical programs.

  3. Gideon’s campaign is propped up by more than $6 million in Defund the Police money, yet Gideon claims she doesn’t support the movement?

  4. As the Portland Press Herald reported, Gideon is a complete hypocrite when it comes to money in politics. She claims she refuses to take corporate PAC money, but she benefits from a record amount of out of state dark money, and she’s raised more out of state money than any candidate in Maine history. She also accepted money directly from corporations, such as pharmaceutical and oil pipeline companies.

  5. Gideon criticized Senator Collins for voting to lower taxes, but won’t admit that she wants to raise their taxes, including their health care taxes. Gideon’s health care position would reinstate the individual mandate (tax), which would raise taxes primarily on middle and lower-income Mainers. 80 percent of those who paid the individual mandate made less than $50,000 per year. A single mom would pay a tax penalty of $1,000 if she opted to go without insurance under Gideon’s plan.

  6. Gideon claims to be able to lead bipartisan compromises, but she is a partisan warrior. She has failed to negotiate with Republicans to reach an agreement to bring the legislature back into session to help Mainers during the pandemic.

  7. Gideon’s health care plan would destroy rural hospitals.

  8. Gideon’s campaign manager, Chuck Schumer, blocked Sen. Tim Scott’s police reform bill -- which Senator Collins supported.

  9. AND - here’s why Gideon’s inability to answer the question of whether she would have voted to confirm Chief Justice John Roberts matters:  she has made judicial nominations a hallmark of her campaign.  She has repeatedly criticized Senator Collins’ record on judicial nominations (which, by the way, a Portland Press Herald analysis called "consistent"), but she doesn’t know if she would have voted to confirm the Chief Justice who has served on the court for 15 years?!?!  Gideon’s answer: I’ll have to do more research?

Mainers should do more research as well - on Sara Gideon’s record.  And - then compare it to Senator Collins’ record of leadership and accomplishments for Maine. Most recently, Senator Collins co-authored the Paycheck Protection Program, which to date has pumped more than $2.3 billion into more than 28,000 Maine small employers, supporting more than 255,000 jobs!  The average number of employees at a Maine business that received PPP: 7!  Senator Collins has been rated the most bipartisan Senator for seven consecutive years - and just this week, she was endorsed by both the Fraternal Order of Police and the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine.

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