Category Archives: Maine Politics

LePage’s meetings with extremists make Buckley and Smith spin in their graves

Decades ago William F. Buckley and Margaret Chase Smith drew a bright line between legitimate conservatism and the extremist right. Speaking out against Sen. Joseph McCarthy, R-Wisconsin, in 1950 Smith proclaimed, “As a Republican, I say to my colleagues on this side of the aisle that the Republican Party faces a challenge today that is […]

How surprising is it that LePage called Social Security, Medicare “welfare”?

BDN photo by Gabor Degre.

See updates at the end of the post. Social Security and Medicare are very popular programs that vastly reduced the rate of poverty among the elderly. So maybe you’d think that, in the nation’s oldest state, a major party candidate wouldn’t categorize those programs as “welfare.” At the same time, the current administration in Augusta […]

What the Maine governor race looks like in June 2014

Polls in Maine governor race, February 2013-June 2014

Every so often a new poll comes out on the 2014 Maine governor race. The most recent, published in the Press-Herald and conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Research Center had a close race between Mike Michaud (40%) and Paul LePage (36%), within the margin of error, with Eliot Cutler lagging (15%). But, […]

Poliquin pick quickens the pulse of Maine’s far right

What happened last week, in Maine and the nation, shows, to paraphrase Mark Twain, that the reports of the tea party’s death are greatly exaggerated. The national political scene was shaken by the primary defeat of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Virginia. Cantor’s opponent, David Brat, is a little known college professor who co-authored “An […]

What Planned Parenthood knows about LePage’s positions

BDN photo by Gabor Degre.

At Planned Parenthood’s endorsement event for Mike Michaud, Nicole Clegg noted that there was no way that Gov. Paul LePage could have received the group’s support. While the governor has not spent a lot of time on abortion as an issue, Clegg called LePage an “outspoken opponent of reproductive rights.” Clegg is right. In 2014, LePage […]

What election night comments by Jackson and Raye had in common

Candidate Bruce Poliquin posed with me at the Bangor polling site on primary day, 2014

Democratic Troy Jackson lost his primary against Emily Cain and Republican Kevin Raye lost his against Bruce Poliquin, but their comments had one important thing in common. Bruce Poliquin was on both of their minds, as Jackson endorsed Cain and Raye talked about the meaning of Poliquin’s victory. Here’s what Troy Jackson said: Jackson said […]

Where are Maine’s jobs? Counties, employment and moving trucks

April 2014 unemployment rates

As the rest of the country has finally gotten back to the same number of jobs it had before the recession, Maine’s less than halfway there. But some parts of Maine are doing much, much better than others. Check out this map from the Maine state government’s Center for Workforce Research and Information, showing county-level unemployment data from April […]

Two graphs tell the unhappy tale of Maine’s job story


With the latest jobs report, the U.S. has now, finally, recovered the jobs lost in the last recession. When Obama took office, the economy was in free-fall. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as cited by Politifact: [In] January 2009, when the president was sworn in, the country lost 818,000 jobs. . […]

In their own words: Candidates Cain, Jackson, Poliquin and Raye


With the party primaries for Maine’s second congressional seat coming up on June 10, check out what the candidates are saying. Below see the state Democratic convention speeches by Emily Cain and Troy Jackson, and speeches by Bruce Poliquin and Kevin Raye at the Penobscot County GOP Caucus. (These were posted by the Maine Progressives […]