Category Archives: Legislation

Unnecessary fight drags soldiers into controversy

In fewer than 70 words, a legislative molehill has turned into a political tempest. That’s what has happened with LD 1503, “An Act to Ensure Student Access to Postsecondary Military Options.” The little bill, which would have little practical impact on schools, students and military recruiters, has created a firestorm, with some political observers wondering […]

Cities like Portland offer chance to move in and move up

Earlier this week, the Portland City Council passed a new ordinance that forbids loitering in the medians of the city’s streets. The new restriction, while impacting anyone and any activity, was put into place specifically to target panhandling. Portland has a large homeless population, especially for a city its size, and the growth creates real […]

A victory for millions and a new hope for millions more

When the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the absurdly named Defense of Marriage Act last week, the lives of thousands of families in Maine instantly got better. Throughout New England, in New York, Maryland, Minnesota, Iowa, D.C., Delaware, Washington and, especially perhaps, in California thousands of loving, committed couples heard – loud and clear and […]

Caricature and the GOP theater of the absurd

Caricature makes compromise impossible. Last week, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal wrote an OpEd that appeared in the Washington publication Politico that, in his mind, describes Democrats. “Because the left wants: The government to explode; to pay everyone; to hire everyone; they believe that money grows on trees; the earth is flat; the industrial age, factory-style […]

Stand firm, pass this imperfect budget

Somehow, through a bitter legislative session that has seen an unprecedented level of partisan attacks, the Legislature’s Appropriations and Financial Affairs Committee shows that government can work, even during a time of divided government. The process isn’t pretty. But somehow, through the smoke and heat of a long session, Democrats and Republicans on the committee […]