‘Brazenly cynical’: Susan Collins under fire over threat to gay marriage bill after Dems reach deal on taxes, climate
Susan Collins (Photo by Al Drago for AFP)

U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) is under fire after threatening bipartisan support of legislation to protect same-sex marriage because Democrats were finally able to put together a historic tax and climate change bill – a huge win for Democrats, the Biden administration, and Americans.

“I just think the timing could not have been worse and it came totally out of the blue,” Senator Collins told HuffPost Thursday. The news outlet's Jonathan Nicholson reports her remarks were focused on "Senate Democrats’ unveiling of their bill to raise taxes on some companies, boost IRS enforcement and spend the resulting money to fund anti-climate change efforts."
HuffPost adds that "Collins warned that the manner in which that victory was secured, where it appeared Democrats kept Manchin and Schumer’s negotiations under wraps until a separate bipartisan computer chip production incentive bill was passed by the Senate, hurt the effort to gather support among Republicans to bring the gay marriage bill to the floor."
HuffPost Editorial Director and Washington Bureau Chief Amanda Terkel tweeted, "Susan Collins tells @JNicholsonInDC that same-sex marriage bill may be doomed now bc of what Dems did on the inflation reduction bill."
Response to what many on social media saw as a threat from Collins was fast, with strong outrage and accusations of putting politics over morality and the lives of same-sex couples. "I love when our elected representatives admit that they vote based on spite. It makes government feel like family," sarcastically tweeted one social media user.
"Gay people shouldn't have rights because Democrats raised taxes on billionaires," said another, appearing to mock Collins.
Journalist Jeff Sharlet, author of the book and producer of the Netflix series "The Family," writes: "Shorter Susan Collins: you can be married or have a planet to live on. Pick one. Don’t be greedy."
"Sorry gays, Democrats raised taxes on the rich so we might have to doom your marriages," sarcastically tweeted Mississippi Free Press journalist Ashton Pittman.
"Republicans are so mad that Democrats are funding clean energy & reducing inflation they are going to (1) refuse to protect gay marriage (2) refuse to fund desperate help for wounded veterans (3) try to block investment in technology to protect US from China. That is insane," tweeted economist David Rothschild.
"Gotta wonder if a quote this brazenly cynical that reveals this is all a game to her will have any impact whatsoever on how she's broadly covered or perceived by the moderates she purports to aggressively court," asked NBC News senior reporter Ben Collins.
Referring to Sen. Collins, top DNC attorney Marc Elias warned, "If this is who you are trusting to pass Electoral Count Act Reform, I want you to introduce you to a girl named Lucy and her football."
"This is the GOP," writes Talking Points Memo editor Josh Marshall. "Because Dems are passing a health care, climate, inflation bill GOPs are retaliating by voting against the semiconductors bill they actually support in the House. They're also going to vote against SSM bill because they're miffed about the inflation bill."
"I just remembered that this isn't the first time Susan Collins has used LGBTQ rights to lash out over petty BS," noted journalist Parker Malloy. "When the Human Rights Campaign endorsed her opponent in 2020, Collins decided she no longer supported the Equality Act."
Attorney Max Kennerly: "A story as old as time: conservatives claiming that they were going to be good people but those darn liberals made them be bigots."
DNC Chair Jaime Harrison: "A caucus of spoiled brats… Because people’s freedoms and rights should be contingent on the GOP getting their damn way!"