How Maine's GOP Senators Are Key to Obama's Agenda

Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe, Republicans from Maine, helped save Obama's stimulus from defeat. How they could make or break his agenda

Collins: J. Scott Applewhite / AP; Snowe: Susan Walsh / AP

Senators Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe

The courtship of Senator Olympia Snowe started in December with a phone call from Joe Biden. The Vice President-elect made sure Snowe had his home telephone number in Delaware so she would know how to reach him on weekends. In the weeks that followed, the two traded memos back and forth about how an economic stimulus package should work. "I had an infinite number of ideas, because they had been stored up," says Snowe, a Maine Republican who never got that kind of treatment when her party controlled the White House. "Now somebody was listening."...

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