Expectations for Mills’ big speech: Part spreadsheet. Part policy. Part poetry.

Gov. Janet Mills has set a blistering pace on a lot of big policy matters since taking office last month, including moving quickly to expand access to health care to more than 70,000 people. But that initiative, as important as it is, was passed multiple times by the Legislature and by the voters of Maine. […]

To all the rich guys who want to be president, remember Maine!

Dear America, remember Maine! Not “Remember the Maine,” which maybe you read in a history book. Rather remember the last eight years of politics in Maine. In 2010, Maine was on the bleeding edge of a political tsunami that was headed toward American politics. We elected a boorish, racist proto-Trump. Then four years later, we […]

Mills right to reject failed GOP policy on health care

In a major victory for sound public policy over naked politics, Gov. Janet Mills continued her efforts to expand access to health care to Maine people. This time, she bucked the Trump administration and former Gov. Paul LePage by rejecting a change to the state’s Medicaid program, which would have erected unnecessary barriers to health […]

My weekend with ‘The Deplorables’

I grew up and went to school deep in Appalachia, in far Southwest Virginia, near the Tennessee line. While the region is trying to reinvent itself, it still suffers the hangover of the decline of coal and manufacturing, and depopulation. Many of my friends from high school and college still live in the region. Others […]

Overcoming Republican budget games on Medicaid

Earlier this week, the Legislature released a preliminary list of bills. There are the normal ones, looking to change the tax code in one way or another, several around energy – including a proposal for a Maine version of The Green New Deal – Republican proposals to undermine the state’s referenda process and a bill […]

Time to write a new page at DHHS

It’s a new day – and a new year – for more than 70,000 Mainers who have been waiting years for health care coverage. New Gov. Janet Mills has vowed that she will begin to implement Medicaid expansion as soon as possible. She has tapped Jeanne Lambrew, a national recognized expert on health care, as […]

Gov.-elect Mills right person to handle high expectations, and potential economic trouble ahead

After eight years of frustration, division and a whole bunch of nonsense, Maine will start a new chapter next week when Gov.-elect Janet Mills is sworn into office. Mills will be the first woman governor of the state, a Democrat with big majorities in both the state House of Representatives and the state Senate at […]

Republican health care fumbles give Democrats a chance to be bold

For much of the 2018 campaign, Democrats ran hard on the issue of health care, determined to hold Republicans accountable for their efforts to take coverage away from millions of Americans. Republicans, reading the tea leaves and the polls, had a death-bed conversion, particularly when it comes to protecting people with pre-existing conditions and ensuring […]

Baby, it’s time to reconsider some important things

From time to time, all of us should take a look at ourselves and the things that we do, say and care about and re-evaluate them. Traditions, heritage, ideas and images that mattered to us in the past are all important. They help to form who we are as people. But that doesn’t mean that […]

Poliquin grows list of Republicans desperately trying to hold onto power

US Rep. Bruce Poliquin lost his bid for re-election to Congress. He was defeated by former Marine and Maine legislative leader Jared Golden in an election decided by ranked-choice voting. Poliquin has refused to concede. He’s challenging the legitimacy of ranked-choice voting, attacking the integrity of the election and has demanded a hand recount of the […]