Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) on Tuesday lashed out at the media over the coverage of her decision to support the Republican tax bill, charging that the press has been “unbelievable sexist” while covering her negotiations with GOP leaders.
“I cannot believe that the press would have treated another senator with 20 years of experience as they have treated me,” Collins told reporters on Tuesday, according to Bloomberg News.
“They’ve ignored everything that I’ve gotten and written story after story about how I’m duped,” she added, per Politico. “How am I duped when all your amendments get accepted?”
She also said that a reporter, who she did not name, noted that she did not cry in a piece about the tax bill, according to Politico. Politico identified the report as a piece in the New York Times about a meeting Collins had with a group opposed to the tax plan. The Times later removed that reference, per Politico.
“I can’t imagine a reporter writing that about a male senator meeting with the same group, and, in fact, I have proof because they met with Jeff Flake,” Collins said, according to Politico. “So it’s been extremely discouraging to see the press coverage on this given the significant impact that I’ve had on this bill.”
After Collins rejected several bills proposed by Republican leaders to repeal Obamacare, reporters watched her closely as the GOP moved on to tax cuts.
Despite the fact that the tax bill includes a provision to repeal the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate, Collins announced on Monday that she would vote for the tax bill. She agreed to support the bill after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and President Donald Trump promised to back two bills aimed at lowering health insurance premiums.
However, it’s not clear that the two bills would pass in the House — several GOP members in the House said on Tuesday that they do not see their chamber backing the bills.