Category Archives: Maine Politics

Police manual extremists asked LePage to change included reason for their arrests

When they met with Gov. LePage, extremists asked him to change a manual on Sovereign Citizens used by the Maine Criminal Justice Academy. As the Bangor Daily News and Mike Tipping reported, two individuals from that group were recently arrested. And, it turns out that a reason for their arrests — a lack of a […]

Phony facts, a fantasy Constitution and conspiracy mongering

As the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan purportedly said, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion but not his own facts.” Moynihan experienced people from across the political spectrum who made claims that had no basis in reality. In other words, they believed things that just aren’t so. How do they deal with reality? Some […]

An antisemitic, racist group’s startling presence in Maine

From: "White, Bigoted and Young," Seth Stephens-Davidowitz, New York Times Sunday Review, July 11, 2014

Maine has a history of hate groups. In the 1920s, the KKK, a strong presence in the state, was aimed mostly at Catholics, particularly Franco-Americans. As many were “relative newcomers” from Quebec, this was largely a nativist, anti-immigrant movement. But the 1920s were long ago and Maine now has a reputation for tolerance and support […]

Fiddling with figures doesn’t add jobs to Maine’s economy

In an odd convergence, 2012 presidential election polls and Gov. Paul LePage’s view of Social Security, “welfare” and the Maine economy now have something in common. Some of Mitt Romney’s supporters in 2012 embarked on an effort to establish that President Obama wasn’t really ahead. In the most outlandish example, one supporter set up unskewedpolls.com, […]

LePage said “get our guns” as extremists wrote him on revolution

Gov. LePage l Photo credit: Troy R. Bennett l BDN

May 28, 2013 was one of those days when something Gov. LePage said hit national news, going viral. It was also a day that, as few people knew, his office received a memo from an extremist group mentioning violent options should they not get satisfaction. The memo included talking points for their teleconference with the […]

Before LePage summoned sheriff, Sovereign Citizens mentioned violent options

BDN photo by Gabor Degre.

One of the oddest parts of the story of Gov. LePage holding eight meetings with members of the Constitutional Coalition involves the governor following the group’s request to have the sheriff of Kennebec County meet them. Later the group asked the sheriff to serve papers on Attorney General Janet Mills and Democratic leaders Mark Eves […]

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, […]