Articles by Matthew Gagnon

 
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Mike Michaud

Mike Michaud and an inconvenient fact

on Sept. 26, 2013, at 1:19 p.m.
In his long political career, being cautious has been the hallmark of being U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, D-2nd district. That’s what makes his recent claim about Maine losing jobs so surprising. He has never been out front on any major political issue while in Congress. Indeed, quite the opposite, as …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

Republicans, the anti-conservatives

on Sept. 19, 2013, at 4:21 p.m.
Some time ago, I wrote a column in which I explained why I try very hard not to self-identify as a conservative. The reason was simple: The word conservative did not describe me. The American definition of “conservative” has come to mean “politically right wing” and in opposition to the …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)

Hidden accomplishments

on Sept. 12, 2013, at 3:59 p.m.
If there is one thing I’ve learned over years of being involved in politics it’s that most of the news we get — whether from unbiased sources or through the colored lens of right- or left-leaning partisan media — is a superficial collection of gossip and nonsense. I have more …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)

The confused politics of Syrian intervention

on Sept. 05, 2013, at 4:24 p.m.
The thing that most people hate about politics is its craven lack of principle. Now, don’t misunderstand me, I am not saying that the American people are thirsting for a deeply ideological, hard line, principled leader or party to take over the country and implement radical change. Rather, voters have …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

The Democratic dark money empire

on Aug. 29, 2013, at 4:17 p.m.
So let me get this straight. We just lived through a special election in the Maine Senate that saw all three candidates running on taxpayer funded “clean election” funds, yes? The rationale for having taxpayers fund political campaigns in the first place was to get dirty, evil money out of …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

Signs of life on the right

on Aug. 22, 2013, at 4:18 p.m.
Nearly two months ago, I wrote a column that highlighted the failure of the conservative movement to use grassroots politics to compete with the Democratic Party. I brought to light the impact made in Maine by grassroots organizing on the left, highlighted by the Maine People’s Alliance (among other groups) …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

‘Move home,’ they keep saying

on Aug. 15, 2013, at 10:45 a.m.
Regular readers of this column may or may not be aware, but I do not live in Maine. I have certainly not hidden the fact that I live in Washington, D.C., but I rarely mention it because, quite frankly, it’s usually more trouble than it’s worth. The news tends to …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

Speedo dance gives Senate campaign legs

on Aug. 08, 2013, at 4:19 p.m.
Here’s an interesting anecdote: I used to wear a Speedo rather regularly. That’s an odd way to start a column, I admit, but apparently there is nothing better to do in Maine politics right now than to talk about people wearing Speedos. And dancing. In Speedos. In any event, my …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

Not so clean elections

on Aug. 01, 2013, at 5:17 p.m.
In 1996, Maine voters approved a referendum question, creating the beast we refer to today as “Clean Elections.” Since the Maine Clean Election Act went into effect, millions of public dollars have gone to politicians to buy signs and bumper stickers and even an Apple Macbook or two. Such an …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)

Withering on the vine

on July 25, 2013, at 6:06 p.m.
So, you may have heard that the city of Detroit, unable to pay its financial obligations, is declaring bankruptcy. To everyday conservatives, Detroit is the realization of their worst nightmare: that the house of cards that has been built by various cities, states and the country as a whole will …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

The Maine Bellwether: Penobscot County

on July 18, 2013, at 4:54 p.m.
I grew up, went to school, went to college and got married in Penobscot County. It is my home, and I will forever consider it as my home even if I were to someday live on the Moon. I have always thought of Penobscot County as “middle Maine.” Because of …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Gov. Paul LePage

The LePage Doctrine

on July 11, 2013, at 4:15 p.m.
Gov. Paul LePage is now the proud owner of a unique record in Maine politics: most bills signed with a veto pen in a single session. LePage beat the previous record holder, independent Gov. James Longley, by a healthy margin. He even managed to bring some flair to the very …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

Disorganized Chaos

on July 04, 2013, at 9:40 a.m.
I have argued for years that Maine is not, as is commonly thought, a deeply liberal state.  By no means do I think it is a conservative stronghold either, but the extremely complicated mix of geography, culture and ideology produce a conflicted and often times contradictory political identity. Maine is full of …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)

The aftermath of “compromise”

on June 27, 2013, at 3:36 p.m.
I think I am about as outraged by the recent actions of the Maine Legislature as anyone. In particular, I am extremely disappointed that lawmakers — certain Republicans –surrendered to the siren’s song and decided to take the easy path by raising taxes on Maine families. LePage was right to …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)

The budget alternative

on June 20, 2013, at 4:27 p.m.
For two weeks now, we have been told by Democrats, talking heads and the editorial pages of newspapers that the budget compromise crafted in the Legislature was imperfect but better than the original LePage budget and that the governor had no reasonable option other than to sign the hastily thrown …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)

Veto the budget

on June 13, 2013, at 4:01 p.m.
Maine Democrats, trying to push through an incredibly flawed “compromise” budget through the Legislature, are chastising Gov. Paul LePage for not swiftly signing their bill. They say he is trying to use time as leverage and play politics with the budget. If he is going to veto it, they say, …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)

Budget brinksmanship

on June 06, 2013, at 12:11 p.m.
We’re getting a tad close to the wire, don’t you think? If a budget deal isn’t struck, and soon, we’re in some trouble. Maine lawmakers must come to an agreement by June 30, else the state will face a government shutdown under the Maine Constitution. The current battles playing out …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)
Matthew Gagnon

Don’t let Hampden Academy lay off teachers

on May 30, 2013, at 6:08 p.m.
The town I grew up in has changed a lot since I graduated high school in 1999. Hampden, to me, was a quiet little suburb of Bangor. Closer to things than Newburgh or Winterport, but not that much different in character. It was a phenomenal place to grow up. I …
PINE TREE POLITICS (blog)

The scramble to fill the 2nd District seat if Mike Michaud runs for governor

on May 23, 2013, at 5:29 p.m.
U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, D-2nd District, continues to inch closer and closer to running for governor.  Whether or not he actually does it is anyone’s guess, but the Democrats seem to increasingly think he is going to do it. And why not? The man himself is telling the world publicly …

The MaineCare black hole

By Matthew Gagnon on May 16, 2013, at 5:25 p.m.
Here is a fact that is simply inarguable: Maine hospitals are owed $450 million. Here is another fact that is inarguable: That debt was caused by an expansion of MaineCare, which is Maine’s version of Medicaid, without accompanying state resources devoted to paying for the additional coverage. Even the most …
 
ADVERTISEMENT | Grow your business
ADVERTISEMENT | Grow your business