Good morning from Augusta, where sweet 16 birthday parties and how pretty my wife is when she wears pink are on my mind.
I’ve been with her for going on 25 years, 14 of those years in marriage. She was 14 and I was 15 when we started dating and if there’s a constant in her life (other than me, hopefully) it’s her love for Molly Ringwald movies. Sixteen Candles. Pretty in Pink. The Breakfast Club. For Keeps. One of these days I’ll finally get it through my head that Molly was NOT in Valley Girl, which is totally, like for sure a mistake I’ve made for decades.
All of these movies have run dozens of times in my house and I’ll be honest: When she starts watching one I usually fire up Netflix and look for Vision Quest, The Karate Kid or The Blues Brothers. Hey, we all have our cinematic vices.
By now you’re probably asking yourself, “Molly Ringwald? In a political blog?” Yep, and there are two reasons. First, I figured we could all use a break from reading about the infighting around the LePage controversy in Augusta. Second, there’s this: Ringwald, in all her red-haired glory, will visit Portland next week in support of Hillary Clinton for president. The visit is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. Tuesday at Arabica Coffee Shop on Commercial Street. I don’t think my wife knows about this yet (here’s her soundtrack) but there’s a chance she has a “sick day” coming on Tuesday. Please don’t tell her boss.
This will be the second time in a week that the Clinton campaign has deployed a child star from yesteryear to Maine. On Tuesday, Sean Astin of “Goonies” and “Lord of the Rings” fame visited Orono and Bangor. This begs the crucial question: What child actor could come to Maine and influence your vote for president? Send a response to firstname.lastname@example.org and maybe we’ll return to the issue in an upcoming Daily Brief.
I’ll cast my vote first: Matthew Modine, for changing my life as Louden Swain in “Vision Quest.” Here’s the soundtrack from that movie, which is our soundtrack for today. Just the thought of it still gives me goosebumps. — Christopher Cousins
Another effort to oust LePage fizzles
Earlier this week, we reported that independent Rep. Jeff Evangelos of Friendship launched a petition to convince Secretary of State Matt Dunlap to begin a process through the Maine Supreme Judicial Court to remove Gov. Paul LePage from office. According to Evangelos, that effort has failed.
In a letter this morning to the Bangor Daily News, Evangelos wrote that Democratic legislative leaders in the House and Senate have “joined the cowardly Republicans to reject our appeal.”
“Failing to learn the lessons of history, Democratic leadership and the Republicans are doomed to repeat it,” wrote Evangelos. “The fault for the consequences is theirs.”
Evangelos argues that there are “more than reasonable grounds” for Dunlap, who has not commented publicly on this issue, to act. However, that provision in the Maine Constitution, which has never been used, is reserved for the most extreme circumstances in which a governor is unable to fulfill his or her official duties. — Christopher Cousins
- Listening tour: Democratic House Speaker Mark Eves’ statewide listening tour about issues facing senior citizens continues for its fifth installment today in Bangor. The event kicks off at 6:30 p.m. at Husson University’s Libra Lecture Hall at 1 College Circle in Bangor. The meeting is open to the public.
- Defense funding: U.S. senators from Maine and New Hampshire have announced that the U.S. Navy will pour millions of dollars into upgrades at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. The projects include $27.5 million for repairs and improvement to a dry dock and $7.2 million for engineering and design work on another.
- Clinton leads Trump in Maine but poll shows stark regional divide — Michael Shepherd, BDN
- Republican ex-defense secretary William Cohen backs Clinton — BDN staff and wire reports
- The bidders in Maine’s biomass bailout remain secret, but one stands out — Darren Fishell, BDN
- Contest erupts among Democrats for House leadership post — Christopher Cousins, BDN
- A battle over a mural of LePage rages in Portland — Jake Bleiberg, BDN
- (First of a BDN series) Maine police know sex trafficking is here, yet many still fail to fight it — Danielle McLean, BDN
- LePage puts Maine on fracking’s front lines — Chloe Maxmin, The Nation
Grammar police and the presidential election
Trump and Clinton supporters are more alike than we think. According to Grammarly, which conducted a study of partisan statements posted on Reddit, supporters of both candidates “write well.” Clinton supporters made 1.82 grammar mistakes per 100 words, compared with 2.1 mistakes committed by Trump supporters. Trump supporters were also found to use “politically incorrect language” 88 percent more often than Clinton supporters and 135 percent more likely to use profanity.
Trumpers: You should probably demand a recount. Just saying.
Some 60 percent of the mistakes were in punctuation, the chief of which was use of the apostrophe. Then/than and too/to were among the most egregious.
There were also some findings about “community lingo.” On the Trump side, “cuck” is apparently a thing, as in “Cuckington Post,” “Cuckbook” and “CuckKaine.” Grammarly didn’t explain what “cuck” is but helpfully noted that Shillary is “Shill + Hillary.”
On the Clinton side, “no distinct community lingo was found.” That’s probably as telling as anything in this study. — Christopher Cousins