Tag Archives: Mike Thibodeau

What’s next for ranked-choice voting in Maine?

Good morning from Augusta, where the implementation of ranked-choice voting hangs in limbo. The system, which election reform advocates have called a “better way to vote,” could be headed back to voters or could die at the hands of the Legislature, depending on what happens with two 11th-hour bills allowed into the legislative process on […]

Maine Democrats make their own state government shutdown threat

With less than a month left before statutory adjournment, Democrats have threatened to shut down government if state funding for schools doesn’t reach 55 percent. Fifty-two Democratic and two independent House members, along with four Democratic senators, have signed a pact to oppose any budget bill that doesn’t have “a progressive and sustainable funding source […]

Why the fight for gender equality in Maine is not likely to end soon

Gender equality is up for debate again in the Legislature and again, it could face a rocky road. On Thursday, the House passed a resolution that could lead to a change in the Maine Constitution guaranteeing equal rights between the genders, but only by a slim 78-65 margin. The vote was purely partisan, with all […]

Does Maine have $150 million of unspent federal cash sitting around?

House Speaker Sara Gideon, D-Freeport, this week unveiled her wide-ranging Leveraging Investments in Families Today bill, which aims to expand and enhance social service programs with federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families block grant money that she says has gone unspent. Republican Gov. Paul LePage said Tuesday that Gideon and the Democrats are wrong about […]

LePage: One school superintendent per county would still be too many

Good morning from Augusta, where today’s main event will feature verbal sparring over education funding. Gov. Paul LePage will hold a news conference on the issue, followed closely by a second event that has been organized by the Maine Education Association and the Stand Up for Students coalition. LePage previewed his argument this morning during […]

King still undecided on Gorsuch, but says filibuster not ‘out of line’

Good morning from Augusta, where we’ll have a busy week as action in the Maine Legislature ramps up and be looking to Washington, D.C., where Neil Gorsuch, President Donald Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court nominee, is expected to get a Senate vote this week. The Mainer to watch is independent U.S. Sen. Angus King, who hasn’t […]

Bid to force LePage staff to testify for Legislature aired ‘in error’

Sen. Roger Katz, R-Augusta, is one of the most buttoned-down lawmakers in the State House, but on Tuesday, a proposal of his that could be seen as targeting Gov. Paul LePage prematurely saw the light of day. Ahead of the Maine Senate’s session on Tuesday, insiders were surprised to see a proposed rule change from […]

Fighting drugs, freeing hedgehogs: Here are Maine lawmakers’ priorities for 2017

Good morning from Augusta, where the Maine Legislature on Monday released the list of all 1,824 bills proposed by lawmakers in 2017. The New Year ritual sends many State House observers into their bunkers to parse it all. Here are the items of consequence — and non-consequence — that we found: The biggest issue: Maine’s opiate crisis, which drove a […]

Maine Legislature’s top Republican, Democrat near agreement on pot moratorium

Good morning from Augusta, where it’s only the second day of the 2017 legislative session, but the Daily Briefs are getting longer and marijuana has become the signature policy issue after Mainers approved it for recreational use in November. On Wednesday, we were told to expect a deal by week’s end between the Legislature’s top […]

Legislature slates hearing on LePage mental health facility, but it could be moot

Good morning from Augusta, where the Maine Legislature will hit the ground running with a big hearing next week. But the issue they’re examining may be moot in a big way. I’m talking about the struggle between Gov. Paul LePage’s administration and most of the Maine Legislature over a new, 22-bed mental health facility to […]