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Monday, August 02, 2010

Maine's Mayor Paul LePage in a Lame Stream Media Feeding Frenzy

When Tea Party activist Sarah Palin speaks about the lame stream media, she certainly isn't reading the flood of commentary currently in Maine print about the conservative Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Mayor Paul LePage, of Waterville.

In fact, plenty of sharks are lurking in the gush of opinion pieces appearing in several newspapers throughout Maine - all asking the same question. Where is the evidence that Democratic Party Chairman Arden Manning said, wrote or documented in any way a statement about the Mayor's Franco-American ethnicity?   Apparently there is no evidence or somebody would have produced it by now. But, evidence is mounting that Mayor LePage made up the story.

While I was attending a dinner party in Kennebunkport, ME, on Saturday evening, the LePage conversation kept going and going like the energizer battery bunny.  People are fearful of Mr. LePage because he is using smokescreens and incendiary comments to dress down the media while not explaining his views on the issues people want to hear about.

The Maine Sunday Telegram reported that Mr. LePage did not complete a survey requested of all candidates about their views on education policy.  Mr. LePage is also quoted as wanting to receive all media questions in writing so he can respond in kind - (what is that about?).

Disturbing to me is the response I received from the LePage campaign when they told me (quote):
"We will be seeking to conduct interviews with those that will provide a fair analysis of Mr. LePage‚Äôs actual policy statements and proven record, not hyperbole and false statements from opponents..."  

Perhaps Mr. LePage is the only person who is allowed to make false statement?  

Alarmingly, recent Maine public opinion polls show Mayor LePage was still leading Democrat Libby Mitchell and Independent Eliot Cutler about two weeks ago, but the lame media drip-drip-drip of commentary, all calling for accountability, will surely erode this margin.  

Nonetheless, Maine elects a governor with a plurality of votes.  In other words, Mayor LePage could become governor with 37-38 percent of the total votes cast in November. This unthinkably conservative possibility exists, given there are three candidates running who could easily split the votes.

Mr. LePage's unscripted comments are causing a media frenzy. Damaging as his comments are, they divert important attention from the larger salient questions about what he will do and say as Governor.  

Is Mr. LePage supporting the Republican conservative party platform calling for closing Maine's borders with Canada?  How will this policy help Maine's economic growth when 8 million people living in Quebec Province are potential tourists and trade customers?

Our state's lame stream media needs to turn up the water pressure on Mr. LePage by asking the really tough questions while, at the same time, seeking out that invisible document he falsely attributes to Arden Manning.  

Personally, I am calling for Mayor Paul LePage to withdraw from the Maine Gubernatorial race in November because, frankly, he demands accountability from those who seek media interviews but provides unsubstantiated statements to the press when he sees fit to do so.  

So, Mayor LePage, I have put my request in writing.



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