Christopher Cousins

Christopher Cousins

State House Bureau Chief

Rep. Mike Michaud

Gay rights group attacks Michaud as part of national campaign for anti-discrimination law change

By Christopher Cousins on July 31, 2014, at 4:58 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — A small but vocal national gay rights group announced Thursday that it is targeting Democratic U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, who is running for governor, for what they say is too soft a stance in Congress on protecting their rights when it comes to housing, employment and other …

Sierra Club Maine endorses Cain; Alfond pays ethics fine; somber Senate tribute to McGowan

on July 31, 2014, at 11:28 a.m.
Democratic Sen. Emily Cain of Orono, who is her party’s nominee for the open 2nd Congressional District seat, picked up the endorsement of the Sierra Club’s Maine chapter Wednesday. Melissa Walsh Innes, the organization’s political team chair, said Cain earned the endorsement because of her stances on several controversial environmental …

LePage camp says Michaud deserves no credit for VA fix bill; 10 in Congress disagree

on July 30, 2014, at 7:08 p.m.
U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, D-Maine, discusses compromise legislation he helped negotiate that is aimed at correcting problems in the Veterans Administration health care system during a campaign stop at the Portland Public Library on Monday. Christopher Cousins/Bangor Daily News Republicans continue to assert that Rep. Mike Michaud deserves little or no …

Audits debunk ex-employee’s allegations of waste by state agencies

By Christopher Cousins on July 30, 2014, at 3:57 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — Internal audits of allegations made by a former project manager for the Bureau of General Services have largely debunked the employee’s claims that the state is overpaying for architecture and design contracts and that he was disciplined for flagging it. Victor Trodella, an architect from Yarmouth and …
Maine House minority leader Ken Fredette

Republicans field 150 candidates for 151 seats in Maine House, but Democrats say it won’t be enough

By Christopher Cousins on July 29, 2014, at 6:20 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — With fewer than 100 days until Election Day, campaigns by legislative candidates are heating up and naturally, both Republicans and Democrats in Maine say the political winds will blow in their favor come Nov. 4. House Republican candidates gathered at the State House on Tuesday to highlight …
Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Florida (center), answers questions from reporters during a women's rights rally in Portland on Monday. She is flanked on the left by state Sen. Emily Cain and Rep. Chellie Pingree.

Democratic National Committee chairwoman stumps for women’s rights at Portland rally

By Christopher Cousins on July 28, 2014, at 2:21 p.m.
PORTLAND, Maine — Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz came to Maine on Monday in an effort to highlight what she called a stark contrast between Democrats and Republicans when it comes to issues that matter most to women. Flanked by 1st Congressional District Rep. Chellie Pingree and 2nd …
U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, who is the Democratic nominee in the 2014 governor's race, talks with Warren Brown of East Millinocket during the town's Summerfest weekend.

Grim economy in Katahdin region divides political loyalties in governor’s race

By Christopher Cousins on July 19, 2014, at 5:48 a.m.
EAST MILLINOCKET, Maine — A banner on the road into town proclaims East Millinocket is “The town that paper made.” The grim reality, however, is with the closure of the two big paper mills in the area, it could soon be known as the town that paper left behind. Few …
Richard Rosen

Study faults Maine for poor ‘rainy day’ planning, but lots of other states fare worse

By Christopher Cousins on July 16, 2014, at 4:55 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — The balance in Maine’s rainy day fund has been the source of considerable State House drama in recent months, but a new study by a respected national group highlights that piling up cash reserves is not just political theater. The state’s rainy day fund is essentially state …

Emily Cain announces three-month fundraising total of $380,000 for congressional campaign

on July 15, 2014, at 10:21 a.m.
Democratic state Sen. Emily Cain of Orono, who is running for the open 2nd Congressional District seat against Republican Bruce Poliquin of Oakland, announced Tuesday that she has raised nearly $380,000 in the second quarter of 2014, bringing her overall total for the 2014 election to more than $870,000. Cain’s second …
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mike Michaud

Michaud fundraiser with Giffords spurs Maine GOP to question his commitment to gun rights

By Christopher Cousins on July 14, 2014, at 3:59 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud’s involvement in a fundraiser next month with a prominent national gun control advocate is triggering questions from Republicans about where the Democratic gubernatorial candidate, who in the past has received support from the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine and the National Rifle Association, stands …
Governor Paul LePage

The 61% calculus: Why November’s election isn’t shaping up to be a repeat of 2010

By Christopher Cousins on July 11, 2014, at 12:30 p.m.
Part 2 of 2 AUGUSTA, Maine — For more than three years, a common sight on Maine roads has been a bumper sticker that reads “61%: We did not vote for Paul LePage.” The sticker began showing up shortly after LePage took office, reinforcing the notion that he rose from …

Michaud joins Hobby Lobby overturn effort; Legislative Dems blast LePage; $820,000 en route for worker training

on July 10, 2014, at 1:15 p.m.
On Wednesday I reported that Rep. Chellie Pingree, is among numerous congressional Democrats who are sponsoring an attempt to reverse last week’s controversial and split Supreme Court decision in the Hobby Lobby case. Democratic Rep. Mike Michaud is now on board as a co-sponsor, too. “This legislation prohibits for-profit corporations from …
U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree

Pingree backs Democrats’ push to overturn Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling

By Christopher Cousins on July 09, 2014, at 5:32 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — Democratic U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree announced Wednesday that she is backing a bill in Congress that would reverse last month’s Hobby Lobby decision by the U.S. Supreme Court and bar employers from denying female employees reproductive health coverage. Isaac Misiuk, Pingree’s Republican opponent in the November election, …

Maine sues EPA over jurisdiction of water quality standards in Indian territories

By Christopher Cousins on July 08, 2014, at 2:02 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — State officials announced Tuesday that they have sued the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in a decades-long dispute involving water quality standards on Native American lands. The conflict centers on whether Maine has jurisdiction over the tribes within their own territories. Though the state argues that it was …
Eliot Cutler

Cutler supporters’ lawsuit challenges constitutionality of Maine donation limits

By Christopher Cousins on July 07, 2014, at 7:31 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — Four supporters of independent Eliot Cutler’s bid for governor filed a suit Monday in U.S. District Court over what they argue are inequities in Maine campaign finance laws. The injunction asks that individual contribution limits for donations to Cutler’s campaign be the same as they are for …
 U.S. Rep. and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mike Michaud

Pro-Michaud PAC pledges $2 million for television advertising in Maine gubernatorial race

By Christopher Cousins on July 07, 2014, at 6:20 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — A new political action committee that is supporting Democrat Mike Michaud in Maine’s hotly contested governor’s race said Monday that it will launch a television advertising campaign worth at least $2 million in the run-up to the November election. Consultants with experience in political media buys said …

GOP rep bows out; poverty in Maine skyrockets; win a gas-powered alarm clock!

on July 02, 2014, at 11:48 a.m.
One of the GOP’s rising stars bows out of Legislature Rep. Tyler Clark, R-Easton, has announced that he will not seek re-election after serving three terms in the House of Representatives. That means that the local Republican committees in House District 148, which includes Caswell, Connor Township, Cyr Plantation, Easton, …
Gov. Paul LePage speaks during the 2014 Maine Republican Convention.

Group that met with LePage denies terrorist links

By Christopher Cousins on July 01, 2014, at 7:59 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — The group with alleged ties to domestic terrorism that met eight times with Gov. Paul LePage in 2013 consists of four Maine men who believe their constitutional rights have been violated. The little-known Maine Constitution Coalition was thrust into the state and national spotlight Monday when Mike …
Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Shenna Bellows, who is running against Republican incumbent Sen. Susan Collins, discusses her views on reforming the nation's Social Security system during a press conference on Monday in Augusta.

Bellows calls for wealthy to pay more into Social Security to help neediest recipients

By Christopher Cousins on June 30, 2014, at 5:11 p.m.
AUGUSTA, Maine — Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Shenna Bellows on Monday said she’d vote to shift more of the financial burden for paying for Social Security to high-level earners while expanding the benefit for those who need it most. Bellows, who opposes incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Susan Collins in the …

Roundup: Enviro group backs Collins, poll trashes government and northern Maine a very difficult home

on June 30, 2014, at 5:06 p.m.
Collins endorsement by conservation group angers Bellows The League of Conservation Voters Action Fund on Monday endorsed Republican U.S. Sen. Susan Collins for re-election to the Maine Senate, citing Collins’ fight against climate change and efforts to protect the environment in Maine and beyond. Shenna Bellows, Collins’ Democratic opponent in the November …
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