Christopher Cousins

Christopher Cousins

State House Bureau Chief

 
STATE & CAPITOL

Democrats target Senate president, three other Republicans in new ads

on Aug. 08, 2016, at 9:54 a.m.
Good morning from Augusta and another beautiful summer Monday. I mowed my lawn over the weekend and now it’s brown and pathetic. It’s not much more than a massive anthill to begin with but it seems like this year, it’s too dry for even them. I’m not a sprinkler kind of …
Cherrie MacInnes’' third-grade class at Brewer Community School learns that it won a national writing contest for their children's book, "“Classroom Pets," Jan. 15, 2016.

Why a Maine school funding guru opposes referendum to hike spending

By Christopher Cousins on Aug. 07, 2016, at 7:26 a.m.
A November ballot question to raise taxes on high-income Mainers to increase public school funding has encountered deepening opposition in recent days, including the formation of a political action committee to work against it.
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump takes the stage during his campaign rally on Thursday in Portland.

Outsider or dictator in waiting? Trump’s tone divides Mainers

By Christopher Cousins on Aug. 04, 2016, at 6:35 p.m.
Several Trump supporters said the unconventional candidate needs to tone down his rhetoric if he is to win the presidency in November.

Sanders man jumps for Trump

By Christopher Cousins on Aug. 04, 2016, at 3:06 p.m.
It was Robert LaRosa’s first time at a political event and despite being a registered Democrat, the event was Donald Trump’s Thursday rally in Portland. “I do like Trump,” he said before going into the rally. “I like him mostly because I think he could ease relations with Russia. They …
STATE & CAPITOL

Top Democrat fired in 2015 after LePage threat lands new job

on Aug. 04, 2016, at 9:50 a.m.
Democratic House Speaker Mark Eves has been named executive director of Woodfords Family Services, a nonprofit organization that serves Mainers with special needs and their families.
STATE & CAPITOL

The wait for Trump’s next Maine visit just got longer

on Aug. 03, 2016, at 11:16 a.m.
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has changed the starting time of his rally in Portland on Thursday. Maine Republican Party spokeswoman Nina McLaughlin confirmed on Wednesday that the rally will kick off at around 3 p.m. The rally at Merrill Auditorium was originally scheduled for 10 a.m, then rescheduled to …
House Speaker Mark Eves (second from left) addresses reporters while wife Laura Eves (left) and David Webbert (right), his attorney, look on during a press conference on July 30, 2015, outside the U.S. District Court in Portland. Eves and Webbert filed a lawsuit against Gov. Paul LePage accusing him of blackmailing Good Will-Hinckley.

LePage lawyer asks appeals court to end Eves’ ‘political’ lawsuit

By Christopher Cousins on Aug. 02, 2016, at 3:37 p.m.
Attorneys for Gov. Paul LePage have urged a federal appeals judge to uphold a lower court’s rejection of a lawsuit against the governor by Democratic House Speaker Mark Eves.
STATE & CAPITOL

Read LePage’s hiring freeze memos and decide for yourself

on Aug. 02, 2016, at 9:58 a.m.
Good morning from Augusta, where Gov. Paul LePage said this morning that an article the BDN published yesterday about a state government hiring freeze was “not at all what’s happening.” “The fix is in by the media,” said LePage during his weekly radio appearance on WVOM. “It’s getting worse and …
Gov. Paul LePage

LePage orders state government hiring freeze

By Christopher Cousins on Aug. 01, 2016, at 4:54 p.m.
“Beginning immediately, no positions will be posted by the Bureau of Human Resources, nor should they be posted by agencies electronically or in print,” the memo reads.
STATE & CAPITOL
Donald Trump smiles at a campaign rally in Portland in March.

Trump hires Maine campaign director, plans Thursday visit to Portland

on Aug. 01, 2016, at 9:14 a.m.
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is coming back to Maine for a mid-morning town hall meeting.
Chris Lyons, chairman of the Libertarian Party of Maine, seen during a recent registration drive.

What’s next for Maine’s fledgling Libertarian Party?

By Christopher Cousins on July 24, 2016, at 1:01 a.m.
Almost overnight the creation of the Maine Libertarian Party morphed from a months-long slog by a core group of volunteers collecting party registrations to a political shift that is beginning to roll on its own.
Supporters of Bernie Sanders cheer at the Democratic State Convention in Portland in this May 2016 file photo.

Why Maine matters at the Democratic National Convention

By Christopher Cousins on July 23, 2016, at 1 a.m.
The Pine Tree State’s influence on the event this year goes deeper than patriotic chants, anti-Trump rants and balloons.
STATE & CAPITOL

Ethics panel considering more sanctions against Portland lawmaker

on July 20, 2016, at 9:53 a.m.
Good morning from Augusta, where the Maine Ethics Commission has convened with Democratic Rep. Diane Russell of Portland on its agenda. Russell, a four-term legislator who lost a three-way primary to run for a Maine Senate seat in June, is headed out of public office at the end of this …
STATE & CAPITOL

LePage says he’ll cut funding for methadone clinics that don’t offer counseling

on July 19, 2016, at 9:53 a.m.
MaineCare rules already require that methadone clinics provide counseling, though cuts in state funding under Gov. Paul LePage have made that difficult.
STATE & CAPITOL

Longtime LePage antagonist asks feds to probe Maine warden service

on July 18, 2016, at 9:50 a.m.
Good morning from Augusta, where great music is cheap. With my car in the garage, I’m driving my sister’s for the day and I noticed that she has a (an?) “A Decade of Steely Dan” CD in her car with the price tag still on it: $2.97. That’s a lot of …
Speaker of the House Mark Eves, D-North Berwick, talks on the phone in the State House in Augusta, Jan. 14, 2016.

Why it looks like Maine’s lame-duck House speaker is campaigning

By Christopher Cousins on July 18, 2016, at 7:04 a.m.
House Speaker Mark Eves, a Democrat, has less than six months left in office before being forced out by Maine’s term limits law, but you wouldn’t know it by watching him lately.
STATE & CAPITOL

Democrats being investigated for alleged clean elections violations

on July 14, 2016, at 8:22 a.m.
Good morning from Augusta, where we need music. Let’s pull out the same hot summer soundtrack from Billy Idol that I used one day last year. You can’t have too much Billy in your life, in my opinion. Wow, I just watched that video right to the end. I should …
STATE & CAPITOL

Libertarians become Maine’s fourth political party

on July 13, 2016, at 3:34 p.m.
Secretary of State Matt Dunlap on Wednesday certified that the Libertarian Party of Maine has achieved enough enrollments to qualify as a political party. The Bangor Daily News already reported that on Tuesday based on information from Libertarian officials, but Dunlap has now made it official. According to a news …

Maine Senate to return Aug. 4 for votes on LePage nominees

By Christopher Cousins on July 12, 2016, at 4:09 p.m.
The Maine Senate will return to Augusta next month to consider a series of nominations by Gov. Paul LePage, according to Senate President Mike Thibodeau.
Supporters of U.S. Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson cheer during the "Politicon" convention in Pasadena, California, June 25, 2016.

Maine Libertarians say they have enough registrants to form official party

By Christopher Cousins on July 12, 2016, at 11:04 a.m.
A bid to create a Libertarian Party in Maine is moving forward, with organizers reporting that they have registered enough Libertarians to meet the 5,000-person threshold described in the law.