The revival of the U.S. Export-Import Bank passed the House of Representatives last week, but General Electric Co. says that won’t save 80 future jobs that could have been brought to Bangor.
U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin, a Republican from Maine’s 2nd District who voted for the bank after criticizing it for much of the year, has been roundly criticized by Democrats after the company’s announcement in September.
The Export-Import Bank, which underwrites loans to foreign purchasers that buy American goods, saw its authority lapse in June amid opposition from some conservatives who say it distorts markets. It still has an uncertain chance of passage in the Senate.
In September, GE announced that if it won billions of dollars in global power project contract, work that could support 500 American jobs would be moved overseas because of agreements with export credit agencies in France and other places. A GE spokeswoman said that’s still the company’s plan.
The two Democrats vying to replace Poliquin in 2016 renewed their criticism of him in Friday statements, with Emily Cain saying that he “can’t be trusted to put Maine people first,” and Joe Baldacci saying jobs are in danger because “companies have no confidence that people like Bruce Poliquin won’t try to kill the bank again in a few years.”
Poliquin’s vote for the bank came after he was critical of the bank’s leadership for much of the year, railing against cases of fraud and “corruption.” He also opposed the petition that brought the issue up for a vote for procedural reasons.
In a Friday interview, Poliquin cast some doubt on whether GE would have brought jobs to Maine, saying it’s “a private company,” we “have no idea what their plans are” and there “has not been one (existing) job that has been cut.”
“I’m not representing our 2nd District to play political games,” he said. “There was one vote to authorize the bank and it happened this week and I voted for it after pushing as hard as humanly possible to end the corruption at the bank.”
LePage to Rockland for post-election town hall
All political eyes will be on Rockland on Wednesday evening, when Gov. Paul LePage will hold a town hall meeting from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. at City Hall.
It’ll likely be the first chance for LePage to respond publicly to the results of Tuesday’s election, and a statement from his office said he’ll also brief attendees on his trade mission last week to China and Japan.
- How a single database of missing person cases could keep searches alive — Christopher Burns, Bangor Daily News
- Here are the jobs Maine employers struggle to fill — Darren Fishell, BDN
- Chinese language courses grow in popularity at Maine schools — Nick McCrea, BDN
- Court orders seizure of Nova Star ferry — Stephen Betts, BDN
- Hundreds mark anniversary of Portland fire that killed six — Darren Fishell, BDN
- Maine ranked one of the best in nation for rules limiting student restraints — Erin Rhoda, BDN
- El Faro owner seeks protection from liability in crew deaths — Barbara Liston, Reuters
- There’s an election tomorrow. Here’s our round-up of the biggest campaigns across the state.
- LePage and Senate President Mike Thibodeau, the two most powerful Republicans in state government, haven’t met face-to-face since April. The Portland Press Herald has a longer look at the damaged relationship.
- The Maine Republican Party plans to be at the polls on Election Day to collect signatures for their effort to get welfare limits and tax cuts on the 2016 ballot.
- An Associated Press investigation identified roughly 1,000 law enforcement officers who were decertified for sexual misconduct over the past six years. In Maine, 22 officers had licenses revoked for sex-related misconduct between 2009 and 2014 and 109 were decertified overall, the wire service said. — Michael Shepherd