Susan Collins: I might support Hillary

But why? How is a corrupt statist dynast a solution to the problem of Trump as nominee? Just beg off and say that neither is worthy of a vote. It’s unlikely that Collins, who’s been elected to the Senate four times and won’t face voters again until 2020, would be punished for it. It’d also have the virtue of being true.

If she’s thinking about this, it means she wants to vote for Hillary. Which, I suppose, makes a certain amount of sense: Go figure that a centrist near-Democrat wouldn’t have much problem with a centrist Democrat as president.

Although, by that logic, why wouldn’t she vote for Trump?

In an interview with me, on Wednesday, Senator Susan Collins, of Maine, made herself the exception. Collins told me that Trump’s comment about Curiel was “an order of magnitude more serious” than anything he had previously said, including his “troubling insults towards individuals” and “his poorly-thought-out policy plan about banning Muslims from entering this country.”…

Collins went on to say that she has not ruled out supporting Clinton. “I worked very well with Hillary when she was my colleague in the Senate and when she was Secretary of State,” Collins said. “But I do not anticipate voting for her this fall. I’m not going to say never, because this has been such an unpredictable situation, to say the least.”

I pressed Collins to make sure that she was leaving open the possibility of backing the Democratic Party’s presumptive Presidential nominee over Trump. “That is true,” Collins, who has been a lifelong Republican, said. “But I do want to qualify that by saying it is unlikely that I would choose to vote for the Democratic candidate.”

Given how few #NeverTrumpers there are among Republican senators (I believe Ben Sasse and Mark Kirk are the only committed members right now), I didn’t think anyone would go full #MaybeHillary. Yet here we are, with five months to go. If Collins ends up on Team Clinton, it’s a cinch that Kirk will take advantage of the political cover from that and back Hillary too to try to help himself in Illinois. Who knows? We may end up with more Republicans in the Senate voting Democrat than Sasse-types who prefer none of the above.

Speaking of Republican senators agonizing over Trump, this is the funniest thing in political media today:

One month after announcing his support for Donald Trump, Marco Rubio still believes that the presumptive GOP nominee is unfit to be commander-in-chief. “I stand by everything I said during the campaign,” the Florida senator told THE WEEKLY STANDARD on Thursday when asked if he still believes Trump cannot be trusted with access to the country’s nuclear weapons codes…

Rubio also declined to discuss the specific reasons why Hillary Clinton is such a threat that he decided to back Trump despite believing the Republican nominee is temperamentally unfit to have access to America’s nuclear weapons arsenal. “I just don’t have anything new to add to the campaign. When I’m here in the Capitol I’m trying to focus on my work,” Rubio said. “Now I’m focused on [things] like Zika. Write a story on Zika.”

The poor guy won’t even make a pretense anymore of reconciling his belief that Trump can’t be trusted with doomsday weapons with the idea that he’s clearly preferable to the Democrat. He’s a broken man. Let’s talk about Zika instead. The good news if Rubio gets his wish this fall, I guess, is that post-apocalyptic America will still retain its conservative Supreme Court majority. I’d give you 50/50 odds that Ted Cruz already has attack ads about this set to go in the 2020 primaries.

In lieu of an exit question, read Michael Brendan Dougherty on the glorious freedom of not voting when presented with a terrible choice. “I’d rather die at the hand of a knife-wielding relative over a game of cribbage than by drowning in an inflated kiddie pool filled with ammonia. I’ve gamed both of these scenarios out at length, and one of them is certainly preferable to the other. But I’m not going to interrupt a pleasant November day to endorse either of them.”