Announcing Hiatus- #FeelTheBern!

Posted on January 25, 2016. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , |

Taking a break from photo, video journalism and overall freelance reporting in the State House for awhile and announcing tonight that I have accepted a position as the new CD2 Field Organizer (Lewiston Office, Western Maine Counties) for the Bernie Sanders 2016 presidential campaign, located at 110 Lisbon St in Lewiston (the old Lamey Wellehan building).

As they say, #FeelTheBern!

Once again, the video of Senator Sanders in Portland last year.

    Published on Jul 7, 2015
    Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, running for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, spoke with thousands of enthusiastic supporters on July 6th at the Cross Insurance Arena/ Portland Civic Center. Crowd estimates range from 7500 (MPBN) to as high as 9000 (BDN).

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Bernie Sanders 2016 Campaign Announces Maine Working Class Cabinet

Posted on January 19, 2016. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

Today at the State House, U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign announced the creation of the Maine “Working Class Cabinet.” Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap will chair the committee.

From his prepared remarks:

    “Bernie Sanders is the strongest advocate for working families this country has seen since President Roosevelt nearly 70 years ago. He plans to build a strong economy for all of us, not just the billionaires. He is also our best hope for tackling climate change, getting big money out of politics, fighting for women’s rights, caring for our veterans, and making college tuition free and debt free. This cabinet is a reflection of the people-powered campaign Bernie Sanders is running. We look forward to working together to get him elected.”

House Majority Leader Jeff McCabe:

    “If you’re not outraged by the disappearance of the middle class here in the state of Maine, then it’s time to skip the cocktail parties. It’s time to head down to the main street to the coffee shop. It’s time to talk to your neighbors.”

bernpressBernie 2016 Maine Working Class Cabinet

    Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap
    House Majority Leader Jeff McCabe,
    State Senator David Dutremble
    State Senator Geoffrey Gratwick
    State Senator David Miramant
    State Senator John Patrick
    State Representative Robert Alley
    State Representative Roberta Beavers
    State Representative Lydia Blume
    State Representative Heidi Brooks
    State Representative James Campbell
    State Representative Ralph Chapman
    State Representative Benjamin Chipman
    State Representative Michael Devin
    State Representative Mark Dion
    State Representative Donna Doore
    State Representative Michelle Dunphy
    State Representative Jeffrey Evangelos
    State Representative Richard Farnsworth
    State Representative Paul Gilbert
    State Representative Adam Goode
    State Representative Scott Hamann
    State Representative Denise Harlow
    State Representative George Hogan
    State Representative Brian Hubbell
    State Representative Michel Lajoie
    State Representative Gina Melaragno
    State Representative Kimberly Monaghan
    State Representative Christine Powers
    State Representative Diane Russell
    State Representative Deane Rykerson
    State Representative Robert Saucier
    State Representative Stanley Short
    State Representative Stephen Stanley
    State Representative Peter Stuckey
    State Representative Ryan Tipping-Spitz
    Honorable Severin Beliveau, Former Maine Democratic Party Chair
    Honorable John Richardson, Former Speaker of the House
    Honorable Michael Brennan, Former Past Mayor of Portland
    Honorable Bruce Bryant
    Honorable Robert Duplessie
    Honorable Charles Priest
    Former President Don Berry, ME AFL-CIO
    Former President Joe Gaudette, ATU 714
    District VP, Serina DeWolfe CWA District 1400
    President Peter Keefe, IBEW 2327
    Reggie Munson, Ironworkers Local 7 Business Agent
    President Cokie Giles, Maine State Nurses Association
    Chairperson Tom Reynolds, Androscoggin County Democratic Party
    Chairperson Troy Haines, Aroostook County Democratic Party
    Former Chairperson Shelly Mountain, Aroostook County Democratic Party
    Chairperson Bruce Hodson, Knox County Democratic Party
    Chairperson Rita Moran, Kennebec County Democratic Party
    Chairperson Joanne Dunlap, Franklin County Democratic Party
    Chairperson Carole Boothroyd, Piscataquis County Democratic Party
    Chairperson Ellen Farnsworth, Washington County Democratic Party
    Legislative Chairperson Charles Chick Cicotte, American Legion
    President Jim Gerritsen, Organic Seed Growers OSGATA
    Craig Brown, Founder, Common Dreams
    President James Pross, Androscoggin Land Trust
    Tomlin Perkins Coggeshall, Founder, Frances Perkins Center
    Maine Business Leader Kevin Mattson
    Maine Business Leader Jim Wellehan
    Maine Business Leaders Connor and Chelsea Belliveau

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Sanders 2016 Campaign Opening Maine Office

Posted on January 13, 2016. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , |

The media advisory reads as follows:

bernpressBernie 2016 To Open Maine Headquarters in Portland

    PORTLAND, MaineU.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders’ campaign on Wednesday will formally open its Maine headquarters. The office opening will feature local elected officials, campaign staff and volunteers. This is the first official campaign office in Maine.

    Here is the itinerary:

    Wednesday, January 13th

    6 p.m. Bernie 2016 Office Opening, Maine Headquarters, 465 Congress Street, Mezzanine Level, Portland

    Information for the public: Doors open 4:30 pm. This event is free and open to the public, but an RSVP is strongly encouraged. Admission is first come, first served.

Here again is video from last summer’s Portland rally, as Senator Sanders was introduced by former Senate Majority Leader Troy Jackson of Allagash.

Sanders supporters have been conducting phone banks all over the state (Augusta, Waterville and Bangor to name a few) for months.

With now seven weeks to go until Maine’s caucus on March 6, the new headquarters allows for even more push to undecided Democratic voters and comes on the heels of news that support for Hillary Clinton is either slipping dramatically or completely gone, depending on the polling.

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Bernie Sanders Presidential Campaign Holds Huge Town Hall in Portland ME #Bernie2016 #mepolitics

Posted on July 7, 2015. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

DSC_0173DSC_0179Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, running for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, spoke with thousands of enthusiastic supporters on July 6th at the Cross Insurance Arena/ Portland Civic Center. Crowd estimates range from 7500 (MPBN) to as high as 9000 (BDN).

Photos of the event can be found here.

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(UPDATE) LePage: “Every Single Fracking Operation In The Country Does Not Pollute”

Posted on March 25, 2015. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , |

At last week’s town hall meeting in Presque Isle, Maine Governor Paul LePage closed out the event with a jaw-dropping claim that using “2015 mining technology”, aka fracking, doesn’t pollute. A link here to a few articles that dispute his statement.

    LePage: There’s a billion dollars of gold, in this county, according to the geologists in the state of Maine. I’ve never seen too many people lose money on gold and there are jobs.

    Woman in audience: They lose money on the clean up after the pollution.

    LePage: No. If- That is correct, if you use 1950 mining techniques, but if you use 2015, you don’t. We can argue that all day long.

    Same woman: Do you have an example-

    LePage: The point is-

    Same woman: Do you have an example of a mine that does, that, using 2015 technology, that does not pollute?


    Governor LePage takes questions from the audience at Presque Isle town hall, 3/19/15

    Governor LePage takes questions from the audience at Presque Isle town hall, 3/19/15

    Same woman: Who? Where? What mine?

    LePage: Every single uh, fracking mine, uh, every single fracking, uh, operation in the country does not pollute.

    Crowd: What?

    (Incredulous laughs, loud murmurs)

    LePage: We can argue it all day long, but the point is, you’re one billion dollars more.

    Man in audience: Don’t drink water in Pennsylvania.

    LePage press secretary Adrienne Bennett: (quickly) Right. Everybody, thank you all very much for your time, I encourage you to grab a booklet if you don’t have one already and again, thank you for your time.

Here is a letter published today in the Bangor Daily News in response to the governor’s claims.

      Out of mind

    Gov. Paul LePage’s recent response to a question about oil and natural gas production using a technique known as “fracking” stunned me. While stumping for his budget proposal at a town meeting in Presque Isle, the governor stated there were more than $1 billion worth of gold deposits under Aroostook County. One attendee pointed out that the cost of controlling mining pollution might exceed the value of the gold extracted. The governor disagreed, defending his opinion by claiming the fracking industry does not pollute.

    Here is the exchange, as reported by the questioner, Ms. Shelley “Chicky” Mountain:

      LePage: “There is a billion dollars worth of gold in this county.”

      Me: “It will cost more than that to clean up the pollution they leave behind.”

      LePage: “Maybe if you are using 1955 mining technology, but not with 2015 technology. There is no pollution with modern technology.”

      Me: “Do you know of any mines using 2015 technology that have not polluted?”

      LePage: “Yes.”

      Me: “Where? What mine?”

      LePage: “Fracking. Every single fracking operation in this country does not pollute.”

    The governor’s ignorance about the environmental impacts fracking is scary. Fracking uses enormous quantities of clean water, adding chemicals to make it “slippery.” Once used for fracking, the water is unfit for anything else. It must be treated or injected underground for our children and grandchildren to drink.

    For the governor, the dangers of fracking truly are “out of sight, out of mind.”

    Andrew Stevenson


UPDATE: As presumptive 2016 GOP presidential hopeful Ohio Governor John Kasich will be in Maine tomorrow and holding a press conference with Paul LePage, this seemed a good question to put forth on Twitter.

It was reported last summer in Youngstown that a business owner was sentenced to over 2 years in prison for repeatedly instructing his employees to dump toxic fracking waste into Ohio waterways.

    Between Nov. 1, 2012 and Jan. 31, 2013, employees of Hardrock Excavating LLC, which provided services to the oil and gas industry including storing fracking waste, made over 30 discharges of fracking waste into a tributary of the Mahoning River. Sixty-four-year old Benedict W. Lupo, then-owner of Hardrock Excavating, directed his employees to dump the waste, which included benzene and toluene, under the cover of night into the waterway.

    Ohio Environmental Protection Agency on-scene coordinator Kurt Kollar was among the witnesses. In his testimony he said, “There was no sign of aquatic life, whatsoever,” in a tributary right after the fracking waste discharges, the Youngstown Vindicator reports.

    According to previous reporting by The Vindicator, Lupo’s lawyers said he ordered his employees to carry out the illegal dumping in order to keep them working because the company’s wastewater wells had been shut over connections to earthquakes.

Yeah- because fracking isn’t just disastrous for our nation’s waterways, but has also been conclusively linked- in Ohio- to earthquakes.

    A series of 77 earthquakes in Ohio — including one strong enough to be felt by humans — was caused by the controversial process of hydraulic fracturing, scientists claimed in research published Tuesday in the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America (BSSA).

    Small earthquakes have been attributed to fracking in Ohio before. But those earthquakes were all too small to be felt. Tuesday’s study is the first time scientists have attributed a larger earthquake to fracking, the process of injecting high-pressure water, sand, and chemicals underground to crack shale rock and let gas flow out more easily.

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