|A guide to|
|Hail to the Chief?|
|Persons of interest|
“”These are guys with the name D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty – these types of guys – they come from Connecticut and New York, they come up here, they sell their heroin, they go back home. Incidentally, half the time they impregnate a young white girl before they leave, which is a real sad thing because then we have another issue we have to deal with down the road.”
Paul Richard LePage (1948–) was the inexplicably red (not that kind of red) former governor of an otherwise blue-leaning state, Maine. And he's been elected twice: once in 2010 (with 37.6% of the vote) and again in 2014 (with the slightly more respectable 48.2% of the vote), due to vote-splitting between his Democratic opponents and independent Elliot Cutler[note 1]. What the hell, Maine? At least they limit their governors to two terms... [note 2] Since leaving office in January 2019, LePage moved to Florida (because it has no income taxes), moonlighted in summer 2019 as a bartender at a restaurant in Boothbay, Maine, and has been shooting his mouth off about the new governor, Janet Mills,[note 3] who's been struggling to fix the mess she inherited while also dealing with a global pandemic.
LePage is your typical Republican with Teabagger sympathies and has positions reflecting this precisely. He is staunchly opposed to abortion, committing the emotional appeal of referring to the practice as "killing babies".
LePage is real concerned that D-Money, Smoothie, and Shifty will dress up as women, sneak into the bathroom, and impregnate and sell heroin to your white daughter. Of course, he has "no personal opinion" but would veto a potential same-sex marriage bill if it came to him. But he has gay friends, so it's all good! His more foaming hatred, however, is directed at transsexual and transgender people. He is against allowing them to even get an education, spewing out this gem: "[I do not understand] how people, at least sane people, would want to allow transgender in our primary schools and our high schools." Real nice. He also hired his daughter as assistant to his chief of staff. Family values in action!
Teabagged on taxes
As far as economic issues go, LePage really doesn't like taxes all that much. He is in favour of abolishing Maine's income tax and referred to the Internal Revenue Service as "the new Gestapo". That last remark caused quite the uproar in the saner community. Nevertheless, he rationalized it by claiming that the Gestapo "killed a lot of people" and that the IRS would too, with ObamaCare at its side. Speaking of ObamaCare, it doesn't take much imagination to guess what LePage's opinions on it are. Yeah, it's evidently pretty evil. In fact, it'll make the United States more akin to the much more widely loved Soviet Canuckistan! God forbid!
Environmentally, LePage is simply atrocious. He thinks that 3 million acres of Maine wildlife habitat would be better off in the hands of industrialized humans, recycling is too much of a burden on manufacturers to be trifled with, and that monitoring potentially hazardous chemicals that could be disseminated to the general public isn't worth the government's time. Also, while not a full-on global warming denialist, he is under the impression that it might not be as bad as the libruls are making it out to be. But for the most backward reason ever. What the man exactly said is that since all that ice in the Northern Passage is melting, we now have room to stick an oil pipeline in there! All so we can exacerbate climate change even more in the long run! Great plan, Pauly!
Fortunately, he does favor some renewable energy... specifically hydropower, and Maine currently gets 25% of its electricity from hydropower. Less fortunately, Maine doesn't have too many unused spots for a hydro plant. LePage seems to have a vendetta against Wind power, in spite of being one of the few places where Wind and Hydro are close to each other, i.e., all the drawbacks of wind are basically eliminated. He seems to think that having companies buy back electricity that home solar panels produce at the prices they would otherwise charge you is somehow forcing everyone else to subsidize them.
Damn Hippie Reporters
I just love to sit in my office and make up ways so they’ll write these stupid stories because they are just so stupid—Paul LePage
In a surprise to absolutely no one, LePage has a deep hatred of the press. He has openly admitted that he lies to the press in order to see just how much he can get away with, because according to him, if he tells the truth he gets hammered. Back in the good ol' days, as he remembers them, reporters would fact check anything someone said, versus today where they don't... in spite of reporters losing their jobs over mistakes thanks to the internet. But hey, we all know facts have a liberal bias.
The Down-East Shall Rise Again!
Apparently forgetting which side of the civil war Maine fought on,
Marine Paul LePage blamed "both sides" for the violence that erupted when thousands of Nazis and Neo-Confederates showed up to try and "protect their heritage" in Charlotte, VA. He views removing statues dedicated to glorifying slavery as the same as "erasing history" or removing the 9/11 memorial. He has previously stated that the NAACP can "kiss (his) butt".
Start of Darkness
So what was his villain origin story? It's actually a bit bizarre, given where he is now.
His parents were French-Canadians, which are like regular Canadians but more French, and in his case spoke only French at home. He was born the first of 18 kids because, apparently, there is no French word for "birth control". His alcoholic father used to beat him senseless. He ran away at age 11. He spent the next couple of years homeless, living in horse stables and a strip club, but eventually became a child laborer. He was initially rejected from college because he barely spoke English but got in when they let him take the entrance exams in French. From there, he got an MBA and became fairly successful in a paper mill.
Whereas you might expect someone like LePage to be a bit more sympathetic to the poor and homeless, instead this made him a bit hostile towards them. After all, he was one of the rare few to escape the situation he was in, so why shouldn't every child be forced to work in the paper mills instead of getting a high school education?
- Cutler's stances on the issues and policies show that he's essentially a moderate Democrat in all but name. Additionally, he used to work with prominent Maine Democrats, notably Edmund Muskie. So it was essentially two Democrats splitting the vote.
- Don't get too excited though... Maine's term limits are only for two consecutive terms. After taking one term off, a candidate is eligible to hold office again. And sure enough, LePage has promised to run again in 2022 and is currently the presumptive Republican nominee.
- LePage has a history with Mills — she was the state's attorney general — which is elected separately from the governor, unlike the federal AG — for the entirety of LePage's term, and when she (frequently) refused to comply with his demands, he attacked her vigorously, even going so far as to try to have the state's courts remove her from office.
- LePage vetoes another solar bill
- Boston Globe
- 3 CNN reporters forced to resign over retracted story
- LePage echoes trump
- Paul LePage origin