Roundup: Paul LePage and the American Dream

The Republican Governors Association this week came out with a new ad promoting Gov. Paul LePage, praised in the three-minute video clip as an example of the American Dream.

The ad tells the story of LePage’s hardscrabble childhood — from the beatings from his father to his time on the streets — and contrasts that past with his current status as Maine’s top elected official. It features interviews with people from the governor’s past, as well as with LePage and his wife, Ann.

LePage himself talks about how his mentors helped him turn around his life, and mentions in passing how his siblings have become dependent on welfare.

“A safety net can become generational, that’s what I’ve experienced,” he says toward the end of the video. “It’s become generational for my siblings, and their children, and grandchildren. I believe in self-reliance, self-esteem, and I truly believe that if you work hard, keep your nose clean, you will get a part of that American Dream.”

(It was also interesting to see and hear from Bruce Myrick, who hired a 13-year-old LePage to help with his soda delivery business, and took the teenager into his home. If you’ve heard LePage on the campaign trail, you’ve heard him mention Myrick.)

The spot is part of the RGA’s “American Comeback” series. It’s not technically a campaign spot; It doesn’t ever tell you to vote for LePage, but it does show high-profile national support for the governor at a time when his two 2014 opponents are already hitting the campaign — and so far outmatching the governor in fundraising.

The RGA, through its Maine PAC, spent more than $1.1 million to help elect Gov. Paul LePage in 2010.

King pens NYTimes op-ed against further Iran sanctions

Just want to bring your attention to this op-ed in the New York Times by U.S. Sens. Angus King, I-Maine (but do I really need to tell you that?), and Carl Levin, D-Mich., urging their colleagues not to support further sanctions against Iran while negotiations over the country’s nuclear program continue.

This is my brother Darrell, and this is my other brother Darrell

The Maine Republican Party on Monday sent out a “clarification,” to a fundraising email blast they had sent out earlier in the day, making sure their members knew they opposed Democrat Steve Woods of Yarmouth, the onetime gubernatorial hopeful and now Senate District 25 candidate, not Steve Wood the Republican state representative from Sabattus.

The party meant to raise funds to help defeat Steve Woods in SD25. The Maine GOP opposes woods because of an economic plan the candidate unveiled last year that encouraged residents of disperse, rural regions of Maine to relocate to more populous hubs, thus saving the state money on infrastructure.

But apparently some of the email recipients were confused.

“Republican State Representative Steve Wood of Sabattus has nothing to do with this issue, aside from having a similar name,” wrote party director Jason Savage in the follow-up email. “Incidentally, if you would like to visit Republican Representative Steve Wood’s Facebook page and send him a message thanking him for his good work in Augusta, we’re sure he would really appreciate it!”

Keep checking State and Capitol throughout the day for more additions to this roundup.

Mario Moretto

About Mario Moretto

Mario Moretto has been a Maine journalist, in print and online publications, since 2009. He joined the Bangor Daily News in 2012, first as a general assignment reporter in his native Hancock County and, now, in the State House.