Archive for January, 2012
Polls close in the Panhandle in less than 20 minutes, but it’s all over for Newt Gingrich.
With nearly half the vote counted, here’s where it stands per MSNBC’s Chuck Todd:
Tim Russert, you are indeed missed. An open thread…Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
Wow. An amazing statistic, posted on Twitter by ABC News senior political correspondent Jonathan Karl just now:
“The statistic of the campaign: Less than 0.1% of ads in FL were positive Romney ads. Read that again.”
Karl further lists that “68% of the FL ads were attacks on Gingrich, 23% anti-Romney, 9% pro-Gingrich. Again: 0.1% were positive Romney ads (per Kantar Media CMAG)”.
Apparently Mitt Romney has “gone all South Park” on Gingrich in the Sunshine State.
In another hour or so, we will see if it was a winning strategy.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
Caterina Announces Run for House Seat – District 128- Scarborough
Local business person, Jean-Marie Caterina, announced today that she will seek the House District 128 seat in Scarborough. Running as a Democrat, Caterina points out that she has a fiercely independent streak. “I am proud of my ability to be pragmatic and realistic in my approach to life. I don’t follow anyone blindly.”
Residing at 311 Gorham Road since 1988, this Maine native brings her vast experiences in business and the public sector to this run. Currently the owner and president of the Caterina MacLean Group, The Maine Real Estate Network, Caterina has a successful real estate career with over $50 million in sales since 2003. “I know how to make and implement a business plan. I have a budget that I follow. I have a payroll that I need to make. I make a profit every year.”
In addition to being the owner of a successful business, Caterina has served Maine as Assistant Commissioner of Labor, worked as a human resources professional, taught in both public and private school settings, and worked as a child protective social worker for DHHS. “I feel that I bring a spectrum of experiences with both the private and public sectors that I can bring to the table in advocating for those policies which are beneficial for the people of Scarborough.”
When asked why she is running now, Caterina replied, “Like most people in Maine, I am looking for a government that presents positive solutions for the issues facing Maine people today. I don’t like the current tone of politics in the state. I don’t like it when one party controls all of government. A balance between competing ideologies leads to win-win solutions. I plan to be a part of those solutions that lead to increased job growth, improved infrastructure, and the development of first class educational programs for Maine’s people. In this way, we will preserve a middle class that is under assault and provide opportunity for those who are looking to escape the grind of poverty.”
Caterina concludes, “I look forward to getting out and talking to the residents of Scarborough about those issues that they would like to see addressed by a thoughtful, open minded candidate for their House of Representatives. If elected, I will listen to all sides and come down on the side of my constituents every time. This I promise.”
Caterina is a graduate of the University of Maine, and holds a Masters Degree from Boston College. She is married to Geoff MacLean. Her daughter, Caterina MacLean, is a graduate of the Scarborough school system. The candidate can be reached at email@example.com and cell phone 318-3440. The campaign website is www.jcatforme.com. Twitter is @jcat4merep.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
Good morning, this is Democratic State Senator Seth Goodall from Richmond. Last night, Governor LePage gave the State of the State address to the Legislature and to the people of Maine. Unfortunately, the Governor chose to give a speech filled with rhetoric and lacking in substance rather than proposing solutions to put people back to work and make our state stronger.
Leadership is about bringing people together—regardless of party—to solve problems.
Leadership is about developing a common vision for our future.
Leadership is about proposing solutions that solve our problems.
Today, we have a decision to make: Are we going to assign blame? And choose rhetoric over reality or are we going to focus on making Maine stronger and, most importantly, put people back to work? I say, that we choose the latter.
Last year, 7,000 Mainers lost their jobs; nearly 50,000 Mainers are currently unemployed; and thousands more are underemployed unable to earn a livable wage for their family. We can do better. We must do better. Maine people expect us to do better.
The solutions to our problems are not based in divisive ideology or accomplished by pitting one Mainer against another. This is inconsistent with our values, and neglects our greatest asset—our people.
Instead, it is done by promoting our assets and building on our strengths and making Maine more competitive. We do that by investing in our people, rebuilding our roads and bridges, standing up for small business, and preparing our youth for the challenges for tomorrow.
We know the best way to lower energy costs is through energy efficiency and expanding our energy sources, most importantly, renewable energy alternatives. Every year Maine spends $5 billion exporting our money on fossil fuels. Maine cannot afford to do this. We must keep our money here at home. We must reduce our dependency on oil, through energy efficiency and wisely developing our renewable resources. This will put people back to work and keep money in Mainers pockets.
The cheapest gallon of oil is the one we don’t burn. That’s why we must invest in efficiency.
Maine must have a strong infrastructure to compete. We must rebuild our crumbling roads and bridges. We can do this starting today. We have an opportunity to put thousands of unemployed construction workers, Maine construction workers, back to work—today. Doing anything less is a missed opportunity.
There is no greater responsibility than educating all of children for tomorrow—regardless of income or zip code. This is done by valuing our students, our teachers, and our public schools. We must make our public schools the best in the nation.
Our national economy is showing signs of growth. With strong leadership, all of Maine, from workers to business owners, from the smallest town to the largest town, will prosper. Doing it any other way picks winners and losers and we will all fall behind. Let’s take this moment to look at what we have in common rather than what divides us to move forward.
Thank you for listening. This is State Senator Seth Goodall.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
Matt Moonen, a resident of Portland’s West End, announced this week he is running as a Democratic candidate for the Maine House of Representatives in District 118, which includes the West End, Libbytown and St. John Valley neighborhoods.
The seat is currently held by state Rep. Jon Hinck, who has represented the district since 2006. Hinck is not seeking re-election to the Legislature to focus on a run for U.S. Senate.
Moonen expressed disappointment with Augusta, saying “Rather than working together to get things done, the current administration has been playing politics with divisive attacks on health care, workers’ rights, and education. District 118 is the progressive leader for the state, and we need someone who has a record of success in standing up for our shared values.”
Moonen is a longtime leader in progressive politics in Maine. He was Political Director for EqualityMaine, where he was one of the key strategists in the successful passage of the 2009 marriage equality bill and the historic No on 1: Protect Maine Equality campaign. More recently, he worked with Maine Citizens for Clean Elections to preserve Maine’s strong campaign finance laws and reduce the influence of big money in government. He also volunteered on the successful campaign to preserve same-day voter registration rights, and is currently the Vice Chair of the Portland Democratic City Committee.
Moonen said he is running because of his belief that providing opportunity for families and businesses to thrive is what is needed to move the state forward.
“I am looking forward to a positive campaign. Working together with the people of Maine, we can find innovative and effective solutions to the problems we face, and ensure that Maine continues to be the best place to live, work, and raise a family,” Moonen added.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
“Rep. Gabriel Giffords of Arizona says in a video on her campaign website she intends to resign from Congress this week to concentrate on recovering from wounds suffered in an assassination attempt a little more than a year ago.”Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
An open thread.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
A lot of media awaits the arrival of #LePage & commissioners at Lewiston Town Hall – do they know something? #mepolitics
Commissioners at #LePage Town Hall Bowen (Ed) Bernhard (DOT) Poliwuin of course #mepolitics
Venue is the Vo Tech restaurant with w/about 20 ten-top tables Flat surfaces will be noisy #mepolitics
Other Commish Winglass (Labor) Mayhew (DHHS) Whitmore (Ag) Millet (Budget) #mepolitics
Sens. Snowe-Mellow, Mason Reps Wood, Timberlake, Crafts, MacMillan – no Dems made it here? #mepolitics
Rep Mike Carey (D) is here and I’m told he was inadvertantly overlooked #mepolitics
Channel 13 reporter taping loudly enough to turn heads while Poliquin making his intro Sorry Bruce! #mepolitics
Lots of TV here to get footage for their 3-minute story at 11
Over 20 minutes spent on introductions That’s one way to avoid questions #mepolitics
TV is way out of control running from questioner to questioner with camera in their face Much nicer in rural areas #mepolitics
Media asked to stay to the side so those that came to see #LePage et al can actually see them #mepolitics
Good question on use of tobacco settlement money Why not being used to build public health system like other states have #mepolitics
Q Expand ZOOM bus to L/A? #LePage all about funding Bernhard says new passenger rail plan out soon (!?!) #mepolitics
Poliquin follows with “The State is broke” passes on opportunity to bash MaineHousing #mepolitics
#LePage says Green Energy coalition going around #megov & #meleg for referendum Is he bashing referendum process?
#LePage said Japanese Counsel came here but said energy costs too high to build car plant here #mepolitics
#LePage said he asked Efficiency Maine if they wanted to join in “They said ‘No thanks’ ” #mepolitics
#LePage confuses actual earnings with adjusted income on tax returns #mepolitics
#LePage said that man he met last Friday told him he moved here last year, bought a house, then State gave him new boiler & oil
Millet says the tax cut is NOT slanted to wealthy #mepolitics Except they don’t http://www.dirigoblue.com/2011/06/who-actually-benefits-from-the-proposed-tax-cut-plans-from-maine-republicans/
Man tees up MaineHousing question for Poliquin #mepolitics
Poliquin mentions Sen Courtney’s bill to allow #LePage to fire #MSHA head McCormick #LD1778 #mepolitics
Will #LePage admit that he and Mayhew made a mistake in their budget projection last spring for DHHS? No, he’ll start in 2002
#LePage says that the reason budget is mess is because @mainegop had been out of power so long & didn’t know how to govern #mepolitics
#LePage favors #meschool vouchers Unlikely to submit bill this year #mepolitics
Will your Medicaid cuts that will send more to emergency room also prevent hospitals to shift cost to insured people? #mepolitics
#LePage increase of those on MaineCare are people who realize they can drop their private insurance for “free” #mepolitics
#LePage first time visit to emergency room w/o paying covered Next visits they pay bill #mepolitics #squeezingbloodfromturnip
#LePage says qualification for Medicaid does not look at assets Suck it up little old lady in that house you’ve owned for years
It’s another Maintenance of Effort requiring a waiver which just ain’t gonna happen #mepolitics
Lady asks about #LD882 which prohibits an insurer from offering more coverage than what the ACA mandates #mepolitics
CEO of St Mary’s Hospital says #DHHS cuts will cost that hospital $6M while their bottom line is just $2M #mepolitics
#LePage threatens to not pay hospitals so as to not close nursing homes #mepolitics
#LePage my proposal last year to cut non-cats was ignored #mepolitics admits that his admin had no Plan B in hand if #meleg didn’t go along
#LePage threatens to close schools May 1 (applause) #mepolitics Last month he made same threat for 1 April #foundapotofgold
Ed Commish Bowen has yet to respond to a question Odd since he usually likes to talk #mepolitics
#LePage Dem legislators are either misleading the Maine people or can’t count #mepolitics
#LePage “There’s more to education than public schools”
At LePage’s town hall meeting in Lewiston. The room is packed. Stay tuned! #mepolitics
The commissioners are introducing themselves and describing their departments. #mepolitics
Adrienne Bennett introduced Mary Mayhew of DHHS as the head of a department that could be contentious tonight… #mepolitics
Poliquin describing overhaul of state pension and describing the cuts as a success.Forgot to mention gov pension stayed intact.
20 minutes on intros. That should cut down on the numbers of actual questions they have to answer. #mepolitics
LePage asked if corporations are people. States they are a legal entity. Nice dodge #mepolitics
TV has handhelds in the audience. Have never seen this before.
LePage says he wants to get rid of all quasi-governmental agencies when asked about MTA toll hikes. No surprise there.
LePage: “We ran out of money.” We ran out of money because we gave tax cuts to those who didn’t need them. #mepolitics
Question from Maine League of Young Voters chief Nicola Wells (a Lewiston resident) on sustainable transportation. #mepolitics
Why is Poliquin answering a transportation question? #mepolitics
Poliquin telling audience that we need to realize the state is broke. Why did we lower the tax rate for the wealthy? #mepolitics
Poliquin: “the state is broke.” This is the administration’s answer for just about everything, and it’s rubbish. #mepolitics
@thisdog I hope #mepress is going to push back on this. We’re broke only insofar as we decided to be that way.
LePage blaming electricity prices as the reason businesses do not come to Maine. Our rates are cheaper than rest of New England #mepolitics
Proof that Maine pays less for energy than rest of New England from US Energy info #mepolitics http://www.eia.gov/state/state-energy-profiles.cfm?sid=ME
@thisdog Cute. He’s redefined “wealthy.”
Did #LePage just say that “wealthy” in Maine means anyone making more than 19,000? #mepolitics
RT @nicolalyv: Heidi brooks just read my mind- she asked lepage why he is cutting taxes on the wealthy- his response? #mepolitics
LePage blaming out-of-staters for draining our healthcare system. Stop blaming outsiders we are all Americans. #mepolitics
Question about “bringing to light abuses” at MSHA. What abuses??? #mepolitics
Poliquin is on his housing warpath. #mepolitics
Poliquin is continuing his attack on Maine State Housing. He doesn’t understand the cost of new public construction. #mepolitics
Blatant attack on Democrats from the floor. Let’s see how LePage handles this. Partisanship or olive branch? #mepolitics
LePage repeating this fabrication about “welfare” in Maine: http://ow.ly/8zOBT #mepolitics
Vouchers for private schools just came up. Curious to see how this goes. #mepolitics
@thisdog Pretty sure he includes things like unemployment as “welfare.”
LePage says he favors vouchers for students. Supports semi-private schools but not quasi-government departments #mepolitics
In case you’re wondering, corporate tax breaks are not “welfare” under LePage tax plan. #mepolitics
@andiparkinson2 Oh very good. Thanks! We’ll be ready to pull tape tonight if you need it.
RT @jaravak: Did lePage just say that hospitals are going to turn people away the emergency rooms? #mepolitics
Hmmm #LePage says he is in favor of vouchers for schools. Sounds like an ALEC model bill. #mepolitics http://alecexposed.org/w/images/b/b1/2D11-THE_GREAT_SCHOOLS_TAX_CREDIT_PROGRAM_ACT_Exposed.pdf
LePage: we are developing low-cost insurance products for younger people and families. #mepolitics
LePage: “welfare” does not look at assets. Really? #mepolitics
@stevemistler @smcover How quickly do you think Treasurer Poliquin is going to try to run out the door, lest he get stuck talking to you?
LePage says he is trying to improve Medicaid services for the mentally ill. Oh really? Than why cut out 65,000 mainers
@lizzy_reinholt The insurance commission. Is this news to you?
Question from Lee Myles, CEO of St. Mary’s Health System: health care “is a moral issue.” #mepolitics
Myles: “do we know what impact of health care cuts will be on local economy?” #mepolitics
Myles: “you didn’t create DHHS crisis, nor did Democrats or Republicans.” Well done. #mepolitics
Myles’ question gets at the heart of the economic choices facing Maine and our country. #mepolitics
RT @dirigoblue: CEO of St Mary’s Hospital says #DHHS cuts will cost that hospital $6M while their bottom line is just $2M
If #LePage is trying to improve services for mentally ill than why is he cutting funding for PNMI? #mepolitics http://bangordailynews.com/2012/01/19/health/dhhs-cuts-painful-but-necessary-commissioner-mayhew-tells-husson-crowd/
LePage just took a swipe at Democrats in response to a very non-partisan question. #mepolitics
#LePage is threatening to close schools if he can’t fix the budge shortfall #mepolitics
RT @nicolalyv: Lepage- I am not cutting budget.
RT @dirigoblue: #LePage threatens to close schools May 1 (applause) #mepolitics Last month he made same threat for 1 April #foundapotofgold
RT @mtkstevens: Funny that Poloquin is quoting the Maine Constitution. #mepolitics
Last question from a LePage classmate: how do we pay for 5-year high school? Are you going to take away $ from public schools? #mepolitics
.@bangordailynews ALEC hopes so! #mepolitics
Bowen says that #LePage is his favorite boss. #mepolitics
LePage just said that local superintendents are preventing kids from going to ME School of Sci & Math – can he show us one?
Poliquin just ran when we (and an @MPBNnews reporter) asked about him violating the Maine Constitution. Way to run away.
Town hall is over. Dear #LePage can’t you say anything nice about our state? #mepolitics
@MainesMajority nice to be with you at lepage’s townhall in lewiston
asked a question about lepage’s stance on sustainable transportation – bringing buses to connect Portland, l/a and Augusta- the response?
1) lewiston/auburn doesnt have enough people (oh really) 2) the state is broke (oh yeah? Then why is lepage cutting taxes for the rich)?
Heidi brooks just read my mind- she asked lepage why he is cutting taxes on the wealthy- his response?
Babbling numbers- cant make sense of it. #ohwell
Lepage- people on welfare because they are wrong. Us- people on welfare because #therentistoodamnhigh and #wedonthaveanyjobs
Newsflash- lepage attacking immigrants and making up “facts” about assistance refugees receive.
Things that make me sad 1) lies abt our state budget 2) ppl applauding lies 3) ppl applauding lies abt vulnerable neighbors in our community
@DirigoBlue oh good, I thought I was the only one hearing this nonsense
Wow-crazy feeling sitting w/my neighbors seeing them cheer people getting kickd off mainecare, losing their housing, + losing jobs #chilling
When conservatives don’t like someone (like the housing authority director in Maine) they want oversight, but when it comes to banks
That pay for lepage’s campaign- then let them go wild! Come on guys!
Lepage wants us to believe there is no money- no money? In the richest country in the world? In a state with some of the most beautiful….
…. Mansions in the world! There is money- it’s our money and it’s being taken from us.
Oh shoot-wanted to ask question about student loan bonding that lepage has blocked- #thatsourmoney (see bill by sen. Raye aimed at fixing it
Watch out- lepage is trying 2 explain Medicaid- the ? was a simple one- are u Goin to keep hurting mariners by cutting consumer protections?
The answer? Yup- you are screwed. I love letting insurance companies #stealyourmoney
Lepage’s cabinet: 6 men+Mary “cut and slash” Mahew-where’s our strong female leadership that get importance of community, Ed and #goodjobs?
Wonderful woman fr new Gloucste speaking out on behalf of those in need of mental health coverage-will lepage secure mental health services?
Yeah- no big applause. Come on guys! Compassion!!!!!!!
What I have learned – You can tell your story til u are blue in the face, and if your neighbors lack compassion they will not be moved.
St Mary’s CEO: the budget cuts aren’t just a financial issue. It’s a Moral issue – period.
Lepage- I am not cutting budget.
Oh really? People clapping 4 lepage’s proposal to close schools may 1. Cheering the end of education? Looking lepage’s supporters in the eye
Ronnie paradis- you and I graduated from public school together and we are good. Are you going to undercut the system we benefitted from?
Lepage- we have bad schools. So let’s cut their budget
Head of Ed dept- cutting money for public schools is good for kids
@raylab I just discovered twit pic- uh oh
Lepage- “the bullseye is our kids”
LePage event in Lewiston tonight. Also Cover-it-Live conversation with editors and reporters #mepolitics http://www.sunjournal.com
what no Peggy Rotundo? #mepolitics #lepage
“We may be in an urban setting tonight but not too far away are some of the most productive farms . . . ” Ag Commish Whitcomb.
Poliquin speaking now. #mepolitics http://www.sunjournal.com “State government spends more money than it takes in.”
Good question to LePage do you believe corporations are people? #mepolitics. LePage: “I believe they are a legal entity.”
LePage did say he did not believe corps were people. #mepolitics
Kind of dodged the Turnpike question too. #mepolitics @stevemistler
“The fact of the matter is — the money that was given to us, I am stretching it as far as I can.” LePage. #mepolitics
Poliquin: “State government has no new money – we’re broke.” #mepolitics
Poliquin is using the cut taxes until everybody moves here with there jobs philosophy. Does that work? #mepolitics
Noticed my electric bill has gone steadily down over the last few months. Still using same amount of kws. So how’s that figure? #mepolitics
@MainesMajority there’s your push back on tax cuts for wealthy. #mepolitics
LePage, “majority of tax cuts don’t take effect until next year and the year after.” #mepolitics
Now for the question? “Do you have the authority or is there any legislative process to remove Dale McCormick?” #mepolitics MSHA
LePage “Get this thing done. I don’t like to make cuts. We ran out of money. Nobody wants to cut effective programs.”
Has welfare really grown by 78 percent? That sounds like off the cocktail napkin?
A rhyme. “What has happened in Maine is we’re a run away train.” #mepolitics LePage
@thisdog Pretty sure he includes things like unemployment as “welfare.”
Good question on ER use by those without insurance, if MaineCare singles get cut. #mepolitics
LePage answering now about Medicaid reimbursement rates . . . #mepolitics Emotional arguments about welfare are inappropriate?
LePage folks intentionally dropped health insurance to get on MaineCare, because it’s free, after eligibility caps were raised.
LePage pitches new plan to require some payment like on second visits so folks will be more responsible with MaineCare use.
Gov. LePage also pitches private insurance products that are more affordable, crafted for young singles and young families.
Bates student asking question now? #mepolitics Would law allow Anthem to raise rates by up to 10 percent?
LePage, said no, they would have to go to insurance super to get increase. #mepolitics
@Kriskxx not sure I follow?
“It’s going to be a tough couple of years for the shrimp industry.” LePage on latest catch limits for Gulf of Maine Shrimp. #mepolitics
Lee Myles, CEO St. Mary’s Health System: urges “thoughtful incremental approach” to budget cuts for health care other issues.
Myles also notes, not fault of one party or the other. “We have an economy issue.” #mepolitics
@MainesMajority there’s an olive branch. I agree. #mepolitics #myles
LePage says it’s not him. Ask Legislature to do something. “If you do nothing, on April 1, I’m out of money.” #mepolitics
“It’s a matter of not having money, it’s not a matter of policy.” LePage. #mepolitics cont.
It’s a matter of when you have $100 in your checkbook and you spend $200 you’re in trouble . . . #mepolitics
LePage now pointing out Federal government has exacerbated the state’s budget woes by cutting Medicaid reimbursement rates.
OK Sen. Rotundo, D-Lewiston, did show for the governor’s visit to her city. #mepolitics just recognized
“There’s more to education than simply public schools.” LePage #mepolitics @MainesMajority @bangordailynews is that choice?
Bowen says they r increasing funds for public ed. Admits he’s a “policy wonk” — this is simple “What’s in the best interest of the kids?”
LePage says school supers won’t send bright students to magnet school because they worry about losing money — #mepolitics
Interesting night, good questions. #mepolitics
@ASFried good point. @andiparkinson2 I thought the same thing, that was quite a loaded statement. #mepolitics
(My tweet to Scott: @thisdog #LePage implying that school supers holding bright kids back? Wow- any proof of this or usual “make it up as he goes”?)
@andiparkinson2 I’m sure we will have some follow ups and @stevemistler will be writing a report too. #mepolitics
And, that’s a wrap. (We all really owe it to ourselves to fact check these statements by the Governor and his administration officials…)Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
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President Obama has taken steps to make us energy independent and create an economy that’s built to last. He’s been a strong supporter of domestic energy production, has made historic investments in clean energy technology, and has nearly doubled fuel-efficiency standards for cars and trucks. Because of the progress we’ve made, our dependence on foreign oil is the lowest it’s been in 16 years. Yet, conservative groups funded by big oil are spending millions trying to distort the President’s record.
The official resignation of David Trahan from the Senate to now head the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine as that organization’s executive director has resulted in the need for a special election to fill the seat, slated for February 14. On January 11th, Democrats caucusing in Wiscasset selected Chris Johnson of Somerville as their candidate. It was announced last November that Rep. Les Fossell (R-Alna) will run for the seat as well.
Johnson, a long time resident of Somerville, is running as a Clean Elections candidate. From his campaign website, here is a portion of his background:
Moderator of Somerville town meetings since 2000
SD 20 encompasses the communities of Alna, Boothbay, Boothbay Harbor, Bremen, Bristol, Damariscotta, Edgecomb, Friendship, Hibberts Gore, Jefferson, Monhegan Island Plantation, Newcastle, Nobleboro, Somerville, South Bristol, Southport, Waldoboro, Washington, Westport Island, Whitefield, Windsor, and Wiscasset.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )
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