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 […]

Maine attorney general candidates in their own words

Maine’s attorney general straddles two worlds. Elected by the Legislature, the attorney general performs executive branch duties. The attorney general is the state’s top law enforcement officer, but also acts as the lawyer for state government’s departments and agencies. It’s perhaps the second most powerful and influential elected position in the state – behind only […]

By all means, donate food, but the solution to hunger requires smart policy

Charity is no replacement for sound policy, especially if you’re the governor of the state. In his radio address this week, Gov. Paul LePage touts the success of an annual food drive organized through the Blaine House that helps people in need around the holidays. There’s not a single word or idea in the short […]

Blue wave carries health care to 70,000 Mainers

There can be no question that Maine saw a blue wave on Election Day. Voters elected Democrat Janet Mills as governor – helping current Republican Gov. Paul LePage to pack his bags for retirement in Florida – flipped the state Senate from Republican to Democratic control and expanded the Democratic majority in the state House of […]