PORTLAND, Maine — Gov. Paul LePage told reporters in Portland on Wednesday that he had nothing to do with robocalls against Republican senators circulated earlier this week by his daughter and her organization, Maine People Before Politics.
Lauren LePage’s voice was on robocalls Monday evening that criticized eight lawmakers, including all five members of Senate Democratic and Republican leadership plus all three senators on the Appropriations Committee.
That group includes Senate President Mike Thibodeau, R-Winterport; Senate Majority Leader Garrett Mason, R-Lisbon; Assistant Senate Majority Leader Andre Cushing, R-Hampden; Senate Minority Leader Justin Alfond, D-Portland; Assistant Senate Minority Leader Dawn Hill, D-Cape Neddick; as well as Republican Sens. James Hamper and Roger Katz and Democratic Sen. Linda Valentino.
In the calls, Lauren LePage said repeatedly that the senators would rather fund welfare than support income tax cuts and are “working behind the scenes with liberal Democrats” to oppose LePage’s tax reform proposal.
That statement closely mimics what LePage has been saying since a news conference at the Blaine House on Friday. Mason and Thibodeau have said the governor is twisting the truth about their positions and that they are fully behind not only reducing but eliminating the income tax, as LePage is advocating for.
“I have nothing to do with [the robocalls],” said LePage. “I have nothing to do with my daughter. She’s a young adult and she can do what she wants. I had nothing to do with it. Am I proud of her? You bet I’m proud of my daughter and I’m proud of my son.”
Lauren LePage is executive director of Maine People Before Politics, an organization that works in support of the governor.
Mason, Thibodeau and the rest of the Republicans in the Senate have been criticized often by LePage in recent weeks as it has become evident that they are far from supporting the governor’s biennial budget proposal. On Sunday, it became clear that Senate Republicans have struck a budget deal with Democrats which is at odds with House Republicans and LePage.
The budget-writing Appropriations Committee continues to work on the details of its compromise budget, and House Republicans already have said they will offer an alternative, which is likely to align more closely with LePage’s.