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I'm not sure the photoshopped pictures of Paul Ryan and Susan Collins add to the level of discourse, but this rather long post on Down WIth Tyranny! lays out in detail the case for replacing Collins with Shenna Bellows.

one key Senator-- my opponent, Susan Collins-- is standing in the way of Congressional oversight. Susan Collins voted against requiring the Executive Branch to fully report on the drone killing program in the Intelligence Committee, and now the measure is stalled in the Senate. She and I may disagree about the costs and benefits of the drone killing program. But there's a deeper issue in her refusal to allow details about the program to be released. It goes to the role of government itself. Either we trust government to conduct important business in our names in secret. Or we demand freedom of information, one of the cornerstones of our democracy. I'm running for the United States Senate to restore our constitutional freedoms and advance open government. I believe there can be no meaningful public debate about any government program without freedom of information. Government secrecy breeds abuse of power. It also leads costly mistakes."
- See more at:
Shenna Bellows, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Maine, left, describes how various models of airborne surveillance drones work in February at the State House in Augusta. Looking on is Rep. Matthew Moonen, D-Portland.
If you care about privacy, secrecy, the NSA and the coercion of our elected officials, this race is very much in the front lines.
Political campaigns, by their nature, are competitions for power. But they are also competitions of ideas. They can put issues into play. And they can force entrenched politicians to think anew about stances they have taken. Even those who might not back Shenna Bellows must recognize the value of a candidacy that demands Collins think more deeply about the essential role of the legislative branch in checking and balancing the executive. - See more at:
Collins is the Senate Chair of the Homeland Security Committee. What better place for national debate on the future of our democracy?

Bellows is doing her part, traveling the state, building coalitions, raising grassroots support. She has worked in the trenches for 10 years on these issues so she is well prepared to take it to a new level. The question is, are we?

Shenna Bellows served as Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Maine for the last eight years.  In that leadership role, she developed a track record for building unusual coalitions with Republicans and Democrats alike to pass groundbreaking privacy and civil rights laws, making Maine a leader nationwide.  She was a leader of Mainers United for Marriage, working for seven years to pass the freedom to marry for all loving and committed couples in Maine, and she co-chaired the 2011 Protect Maine Votes campaign to restore same-day voter registration.  Most recently, she organized a successful privacy campaign to require warrants for access to private cellphone communications, and she led the opposition to warrantless drone surveillance.

Prior to her work at the ACLU of Maine, Shenna was the national field organizer at the ACLU in Washington, DC, organizing nationwide civil liberties campaigns including opposition to the Patriot Act, where she built broad coalitions that included librarians and gun owners alike.

In answer to the question in the title,

NO, it is time to send in the sweepers to clean up the mess the elephants created.

Originally posted to slakn1 on Sat Jan 11, 2014 at 08:15 AM PST.

Also republished by BellowsforSenate.

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