Robert F. Bukaty | AP
By Michael Shepherd, BDN Employees •
October 19, 2018 9:00 am
Up to date: October 19, 2018 9:12 am
Good morning from Augusta, the place Gov. Paul LePage is within the twilight of his tenure as an elected official. He stated in a current interview he gained’t run for workplace once more, however his transfer to roll out a two-year price range proposal might loom over his successor’s transition.
The outgoing Republican went over his tenure in an interview with C-SPAN that was launched Thursday, saying his biggest accomplishment was paying again greater than $183 million in debt to Maine hospitals in 2013 with income from a renegotiated liquor contract.
However Maine nonetheless has LePage till early January and he has possibilities to shape future coverage as implementation of voter-approved Medicaid enlargement sits within the courts. He additionally on Thursday launched a framework of a price range proposal coming in November that might minimize revenue taxes.
LePage breezily went over his tenure within the C-SPAN interview, saying he’s over politics and he doesn’t thoughts if he’s not well-liked. The governor took credit score for Maine’s low unemployment fee within the C-SPAN interview, attributing it to a local weather that his administration helped create by pushing tax cuts. He flirted with a 2018 run for U.S. Senate earlier than ruling it out final yr. When requested if he would run for workplace once more, the 70-year-old governor stated “politics is out of my life.”
“I did it because I thought it was important I give back to the state of Maine,” he stated.
In current nationwide polling from Morning Seek the advice of, LePage had the seventh-highest disapproval score inside every state at 54 % to 40 % who permitted of his efficiency. Solely 6 % have been undecided or had no opinion, which was the bottom share for any governor in an indication of how polarizing LePage’s tenure has been.
When requested about it, LePage didn’t thoughts in any respect and stated he’d “take the rap for it”, arguing, “If you have the highest, that means you’re not doing your job. That means you’ve got to do the job you’re hired for and you’re not going to please everybody.”
He additionally stated his relationship with President Donald Trump is robust, though he fleshed out his disagreement with the president over tariffs on Canadian softwood and lobster. LePage has been working with officers in New Brunswick on making an attempt to get them rolled again. He blamed them on “greedy industrialists and millowners around the country.”
LePage additionally stated for the primary time that he had a “cardiac issue” through the August incident that his workplace described as “discomfort,” which triggered him to be taken from a go to to New Brunswick to a Presque Isle hospital and eventually to Bangor.
The successors to LePage have been tight-lipped on how they might obtain his price range proposal. The response to that proposal was principally muted from the 4 candidates to succeed LePage — Republican Shawn Moody, Democrat Janet Mills and independents Terry Hayes and Alan Caron.
Whereas Caron stated LePage’s makes an attempt to shape the subsequent governor’s two-year finances proposal “are not welcome or helpful,” the others principally reserved judgment on it and stated they might assessment it and take the suggestions into consideration.
Ballot: Poliquin, Golden tied in 2nd District
The Democratic challenger has pulled even with the two-term Republican within the second ballot of the race from the identical organizations. The New York Occasions and Siena School are persevering with their live-polling experiment in congressional districts throughout the nation they usually completed their second ballot of the toss-up race in Maine’s 2nd District between U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin and Assistant Maine Home Majority Chief Jared Golden on Friday.
The outcomes have been about as tight as might be, with Poliquin and Golden tied at 41 % within the ballot with 15 % undecided. Understand that this didn’t embrace the 2 unbiased challengers — Tiffany Bond and Will Hoar — and the impact of ranked-choice voting on the race.
Nevertheless, tendencies in polling are extra essential than the outcomes of a single ballot and the earlier reside ballot within the 2nd District, taken in mid-September, had Poliquin 5 factors forward.
The race is additionally altering in statistical fashions. FiveThirtyEight favored Golden in two of three fashions that it makes use of to gauge congressional races after giving Poliquin an edge for many of the marketing campaign. Our election outcomes companions at Choice Desk HQ give Poliquin a slim 55 % probability of profitable now.
Arctic circle of buddies
The governor is properly sufficient to journey. In his first abroad journey since a cardiac episode left him hospitalized in late August, LePage is touring to Reykjavik, Iceland, this weekend to speak commerce relations with northern European authorities officers.
LePage, who opted out of a scheduled commerce mission to the UK final month, will take a delegation of 40 Mainers to the Arctic Circle Meeting, the place he’ll meet with Iceland’s Minister of Overseas Affairs Gudlaugur Thor Thordarson. The 2 will renew the Maine-Iceland Memorandum of Understanding, final signed in 2014, as a dedication to “strengthen ties and increase cooperation in the areas of economic development, trade, energy, natural resources, transportation, culture and the arts,” the governor’s workplace stated in a launch.
Members of the Maine North Atlantic Improvement Workplace, created in 2014 to foster the state’s relationships within the northern European area, will meet with worldwide companions to talk about, for instance, how Greenland’s airport enlargement and improvement in its capital metropolis, Nuuk can profit Maine.
— Maine voters will determine subsequent month whether or not to borrow as a lot as $200 million to assist pay for issues that want fixing. The 4 bond questions on the Nov. 6 poll ask voters to approve borrowing cash for transportation infrastructure, water remedy upgrades and higher amenities at Maine college and group school campuses. Historical past exhibits that the bond questions will probably move, as Maine voters have authorised 80 % of all bond questions since 1990, with a fair greater probability of passage in gubernatorial election years.
— Central Maine Energy agreed to bury strains alongside a scenic portion of the route for its proposed hydropower transmission venture, however that didn’t quell controversy. Regulatory assessment of the $950 million venture to funnel electrical energy from Canadian dams to Massachusetts by means of western Maine strikes into a brand new part as we speak, as opponents proceed to query the environmental advantages of the plan and proponents tout it as a possible jobs creator. On Thursday, CMP stated it might alter the plan by operating energy strains underground close to the Kennebec Gorge.
— Pay no consideration to these October snowflakes and that roaring furnace. Local weather forecasters predict that Maine will expertise above common temperatures through the coming winter. The Nationwide Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Local weather Prediction Middle on Thursday launched its outlook for the 2018-2019 winter. The group’s predictive maps positioned Maine in a sweeping band of orange, signifying that middle forecasters consider the state is amongst these with a 40 % to 50 % probability of being “warmer than normal.” Middle Deputy Director Mike Halpert stated in a press release a “weak El Nino” might deliver “warmer, drier conditions to parts of the North.” Right here is your soundtrack.
— A bureaucratic glitch pressured a Maine city to reschedule a vote on a brand new public security constructing. The Orrington Board of Selectmen uncared for to signal the warrant for subsequent Tuesday’s particular city assembly at which residents have been to vote on the $three.5 million proposal. When interim City Supervisor Andrew Fish found the oversight, he despatched a letter to townspeople alerting them that the assembly had been canceled and that a new date can be set.
We at Daily Brief attempt to be neutral in all issues — besides baseball.
Michael Shepherd and I are rip-snorting, full-on Purple Sox followers, as was our late colleague, Chris Cousins. Mike and I symbolize totally different ends of the Bosox fan spectrum. I align with the long-suffering followers who’ve nonetheless by no means fairly recovered from the heartbreak of 1967, 1975, 1986, 2003 — and some different unhappy finishes that I select not to keep in mind. Mike brings a extra constructive strategy to his Pink Sox fandom, because the group truly said profitable World Collection titles each few years nearly when he was getting into adolescence.
Our new colleague, Alex Acquisto, has been unusually quiet about her baseball allegiances. We’d have to take this matter up with human assets after the World Collection.
In any case, Daily Brief command central was a cheerful place final night time when the Purple Sox clinched a visit to the World Collection by beating the defending champion Houston Astros. The series-clinching win — coming after the dramatic Recreation four victory shortly after midnight Thursday morning — gave first-year supervisor Alex Cora the uncommon deal with of profitable two video games and a visit to the World Collection on his birthday.
Cora turns into the primary supervisor born in Puerto Rico to information his staff to the World Collection. Right here is his soundtrack. — Robert Lengthy
Right now’s Daily Brief was written by Michael Shepherd, Alex Acquisto and Robert Lengthy. In case you’re studying this on the BDN’s web site or have been forwarded it, click on right here to obtain Maine’s main publication on state politics by way of e mail on weekday mornings. Click on right here to subscribe to the BDN.
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