WINSLOW, Maine — For the third time, and the second time at a school, Maine Gov. Paul LePage has warned of what he sees as a newspaper industry in Maine full of liars.
“My greatest fear in the state of Maine: newspapers,” LePage told children at the St. John Catholic School on Friday, according to a report from the Central Maine Morning Sentinel. “I’m not a fan of newspapers.”
Afterward, he told reporters that he prefers TV and radio news because he believes they don’t spin the news.
LePage, who was not endorsed by any major Maine daily newspaper during his run for governor, has frequently made headlines for some of his remarks. Previously, LePage twice publicly warned audiences that Maine’s newspapers are full of lies — first at a fisherman’s forum in Rockport and again to schoolchildren a year later in Waterville.
Studies by Pew Research have found that respondents, regardless of political leanings, have increasingly lost trust in American media. But in a 2011 survey, respondents indicated that they trusted local news outlets more than national news organizations, state and federal government or corporations.
A study shortly before the election that detailed positive, negative and mixed stories about each of the candidates for president found that positive coverage for Barack Obama took a turn after his disastrous performance in the first debate, and that overall, with stories about the horse race — who’s up and who’s down — removed, both Obama and rival Mitt Romney received approximately the same amount of positive and negative coverage in 2012. That was in stark contrast to 2008, the study stated, when Obama received much more positive press than then-presidential candidate John McCain.
Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated the timeline of LePage's earlier comments regarding newspapers. His first comments were in 2011, more than a year before his second comment in 2012.