Commentary

Blame Dill and Liberals for Poor Economic Record, Not Me

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As a shameless shill for liberal causes, it’s no surprise that Cynthia Dill points the finger elsewhere for the state of the Maine economy. Her April 17 column, “Maine’s report card will make you see red,” castigates me for our state’s poor economic performance, but she neglects to mention the real obstacle to growth and prosperity: the Legislature’s socialist ideology.

Forty years of a Democratic stranglehold on Augusta transformed Maine from a society of rugged individualists into a highly taxed, anti-business state in which liberals were proud to perpetuate poverty through an out-of-control welfare system. It won’t be changed overnight – or even six years – until and unless the Maine people demand it and send legislators to Augusta who will work on their behalf, not cower to special interests and welfare activists.

It’s easy for Dill and other rich liberals in southern Maine to complain righteously about poverty. It may make for great cocktail party banter and assuage liberal guilt, but let’s get real. Limousine liberals and legislators from wealthy communities in southern Maine don’t have to deal with poverty. Severely underemployed Mainers in Calais and Machias and The County have to live with it every day.

Yet Dill and other liberal elitists are the first to block mining in Aroostook County, which would provide jobs that pay between $60,000 and $90,000 a year. They champion solar power, which would raise rates on rural Mainers and make a few wealthy investors rich, all the while blocking clean and inexpensive hydroelectric power that would entice big, energy-intensive companies to come here and bring good-paying jobs with them.

Dill complains about income growth, but what gives her and her rich southern Maine cronies the right to deny Mainers good jobs? If she wants to blame someone for Maine’s stagnant economy, poor educational performance and job losses, she should be pointing her finger at her liberal brethren.

Democrats oppose reducing or eliminating the income tax, which would be a significant pay raise for all working Mainers. Instead, they are pushing for a job-crushing increase in the minimum wage, which will result in higher prices for consumers and unemployment for low-skilled workers.

View the full article in the Portland Press Herald here.

About Paul LePage

Governor Paul LePage (R) has served as the 74th Governor of Maine since 2011. Prior to his time as governor, LePage served as the general manager of Marden's and as the mayor of Waterville.

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