Pingree wants a vote on U.S. military aid in Syria

U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree wants the House of Representatives to vote on authorizing military forces to fight in Syria, where a brutal civil war has killed tens of thousands and displaced millions.

Pingree, a Democrat from Maine’s 1st District, and a bipartisan group of 34 others House members called for a vote after the announcement that the U.S. would send less than 50 troops to advise groups fighting the Islamic State, a terrorist group.

“I don’t think we should get involved in another war in the Middle East,” she said in a statement, “but that’s exactly the direction we could be headed in if we don’t have an open and public debate.”

The Obama administration is using military authorizations from 2001 and 2002 to justify the U.S. action to fight the Islamic State, but Pingree has argued that it doesn’t cover this conflict.

Workshop for veterans seeking licenses

The Maine Department of Professional and Financial Regulation is holding a workshop for veterans looking to apply for occupational licenses on Tuesday.

Maine laws passed in 2012 and 2013 make it easier for veterans applying for occupational licenses to be given credit for military experience, and in a statement, Gov. Paul LePage said the state has “a responsibility to recognize their skills, and to assist them in obtaining the credentials needed for good jobs.”

The workshop will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the department’s Gardiner office at 76 Northern Avenue.

Reading list

Best of Maine’s Craigslist

This will be a semi-regular recurring feature in the Daily Brief, where we venture into the strange world that is the Maine Craigslist page.

We’ll retain posters’ syntax wherever possible, and Craigslist is a big place, so if you spot any great listings, send them to me at

  • In Hollis Center, you can pick up a pound of Folgers Black Silk instant coffee — for free!
  • A man who recently went to the Christmas Tree Shops location in Bangor to pick up tea while he was dressed like “a bum” says there were lots of cute women shopping that day, and he’s wondering if any of them saw him and remarked, “gee if he cleaned up he might be cute for an old guy.”
  • A rooster wandered into a coop in Raymond. He’s young and non-aggressive, the new owners say, but, “Only thing is we don’t want a rooster!” You can have him for free.
  • Up in Burnham, you can get a concrete block building for free. Now, that may sound like a whale of a deal, bub, but you can’t live there. Gerald says you’ve got to take ‘er down and haul ‘er.
Michael Shepherd

About Michael Shepherd

Michael Shepherd joined the Bangor Daily News in 2015 after covering state, federal and local issues for the Kennebec Journal for three years. He's a Hallowell native who now lives in Gardiner. He graduated from the University of Maine in 2012 and is a graduate student at the University of Southern Maine's Muskie School of Public Service.