Articles by Scott Thistle

Jared Golden

Legislators push to fill vacancies at Maine veterans center

By Scott Thistle on Sept. 14, 2015, at 10:04 a.m.
Legislators from Lewiston are urging Maine’s congressional delegation to keep the heat on the federal Veterans Affairs Administration until vacant counseling positions at the city’s vet center are filled …
U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree speaks during a debate at the WGME studios in Portland on Oct. 6, 2014.

Republicans rip Pingree for excluding Sussman from financial report

By Scott Thistle on Sept. 10, 2015, at 8:34 a.m.
Maine’s 1st District U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree has filed her financial disclosure report for 2014, nearly four months after the original May 15 deadline. Pingree, a Democrat, filed the report Tuesday but excluded any financial information about her billionaire husband and Wall Street hedge fund manager, S. Donald Sussman, whom …
Sen. Amy Volk

Maine senator endorses Republican Carly Fiorina for president

By Scott Thistle on Sept. 02, 2015, at 4:51 p.m.
LEWISTON | State Sen. Amy Volk, R-Scarborough, on Wednesday endorsed Republican presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina on the eve of Fiorina’s scheduled visit to Maine. Fiorina is making several private Maine appearances Thursday, including a luncheon at the Maine Heritage Policy Center, as well as attending a fundraising event in …
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton takes reporters questions during a news conference after she addressed the Democratic National Committee Summer Meeting on Aug. 28 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Maine GOP fundraiser targets Hillary Clinton

By Scott Thistle on Sept. 02, 2015, at 1:35 p.m.
LEWISTON | The Maine Republican Party this week touted details from a door-to-door survey to suggest that support for Hillary Clinton, the Democratic Party’s 2016 presidential frontrunner, is weak among swing voters in the Pine Tree State. Jason Savage, executive director of the Maine Republican Party, said Wednesday that …
Dignitaries from both sides of the border were on hand for the grand opening Thursday of Irving Woodland's Ashland Sawmill, including (from left) Maine Gov. Paul LePage; Jim Irving, co-CEO of the company; and U.S. Sen. Angus King on Oct. 2, 2014.

LePage tells Howie Carr he may challenge Angus King in 2018

By Scott Thistle on Aug. 25, 2015, at 6:48 p.m.
AUGUSTA | During an afternoon appearance Tuesday on a conservative talk radio show, Maine’s Republican Gov. Paul LePage said he may run for the U.S. Senate in 2018. LePage made the comment during an appearance on the Boston-based “ Howie Carr Show,” which was broadcasting from Maine on Tuesday …
John Reid, owner of J.T. Reid's Gun Shop in Auburn, stands behind a stack of handguns that just arrived at his store. Reid has stocked up in anticipation of greater demand because of the upcoming change in Maine law that allows adults to carry a concealed handgun without a permit.

Maine gun dealers report more sales as new carry law approaches

By Scott Thistle on Aug. 18, 2015, at 9:31 p.m.
AUBURN | A new law in Maine that in October will allow adults to carry concealed handguns in Maine without police-issued permits is triggering a spike in gun sales at shops in the Lewiston-Auburn region. John Reid, owner of the J.T. Reid’s Gun Shop in Auburn, said Tuesday that …
Stavros Mendros

Maine immigrant welfare bill may face 2 ballot challenges

By Scott Thistle on Aug. 17, 2015, at 7:06 p.m.
LEWISTON | The organizer of a people’s veto referendum aimed at repealing a law that allows cities and towns to pay General Assistance benefits to asylum-seeking immigrants for up to two years said he hopes to start collecting signatures soon. But the question could face competition from another proposal …
This 2014 MDEA evidence photo shows the six state-issued electronic benefit transfer, or EBT, cards that were in the possession of Paul Robinson when he was arrested at his Bartlett Street apartment in Lewiston. None of the cards belonged to Robinson, who was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison on drug charges in July.

Drug agents say EBT cards being used to buy drugs

By Scott Thistle on Aug. 17, 2015, at 12:11 p.m.
LEWISTON | When state drug agents arrested Paul Robinson in January 2014 for selling crack cocaine from his Bartlett Street apartment, they seized guns, drugs and cash, a typical evidence haul for a suspected drug dealer. But also in Robinson’s possession that day were six state-issued electronic benefit transfer …
Gov. Paul LePage talks about his budget during a Town Hall meeting at the University of Maine Hutchinson Center in Belfast in this April 28, 2015, file photo.

LePage: ‘I do not have a lawsuit against President Obama’

By Scott Thistle on Aug. 11, 2015, at 2:35 p.m.
AUGUSTA | In the latest in a series of handwritten messages, Maine’s Republican Gov. Paul LePage denies he’s among a group of plaintiffs suing President Barack Obama. “I believe you mistake me for someone else,” LePage wrote in his note to Murshed Zaheed, an activist with the group CREDO …

State visa program eyed to boost foreign investment in Maine

By Scott Thistle on Aug. 05, 2015, at 4:03 p.m.
LEWISTON | The state of Maine is looking to start its own program to help attract more direct foreign investment, according to Maine Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner George Gervais. “The state is interested in establishing a state-run EB-5 regional center in the absence of activity within …
U.S. Sen. Susan Collins

Collins and King take issue with bill to defund Planned Parenthood

By Scott Thistle on Aug. 04, 2015, at 9 a.m.
WASHINGTON — Maine’s U.S. senators took similar positions Monday in a controversial debate over federal funding for Planned Parenthood following the release of a series of undercover videos by an anti-abortion group. U.S. Sens. Susan Collins, a Republican, and Angus King, an independent, made speeches in the Senate urging their …

Saddleback extends deadline for decision on upcoming ski season

By Scott Thistle on July 31, 2015, at 5:18 p.m.
DALLAS PLANTATION | The general manager for the Saddleback ski area said Friday the resort was going to extend by a few days its self-imposed deadline for securing $3 million in financing for a new chairlift. In July, the resort announced it would have to close for the 2015-16 …

Bill to set up vets commission stuck in LePage’s legal limbo

By Scott Thistle on July 30, 2015, at 8:55 a.m.
AUGUSTA | A bill that creates a short-term task force of veterans to review and make recommendations for change to the state’s Bureau of Veterans Services is among a group of 65 bills in legal limbo as the Legislature and Republican Gov. Paul LePage’s lawyers prep to duke it …
Larry Gilbert (left), a former Lewiston mayor and police chief, stands with police chiefs from several of Maine's largest cities in Portland in this April 2015 file photo.

Maine lags in sending data to US gun background check system

By Scott Thistle on July 27, 2015, at 6:18 p.m.
LEWISTON | Since 2011, the number of mental health records reported to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System has increased dramatically, helping block the sale of firearms to people with serious mental health problems. But many states, including Maine, have failed to significantly change their laws to require …
Jonathan LaBonte

LePage’s bond stance puts Auburn mayor in tough spot

By Scott Thistle on July 15, 2015, at 10:04 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Auburn Mayor Jonathan LaBonte, former executive director of the Androscoggin Land Trust and a well-known supporter of land conservation, is in a seemingly tough spot these days. LaBonte, who left the land trust in 2014 to become director of Gov. Paul LePage’s Office of Policy and Management, …
David Boyer, head of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, speaks at a forum hosted by the Maine Law Federalist Society in Portland on April 20, 2015.

Dueling pot legalization campaigns grow support in Maine

By Scott Thistle on July 15, 2015, at 5:24 p.m.
AUGUSTA | The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, a group hoping to place a ballot question before Maine voters to legalize recreational marijuana in the state, is reporting it has raised $53,011 in the second quarter of 2015. But $50,000 of the donations came from the Marijuana Policy …
Nick Danby, a junior at Bangor High School, salutes his teammates  in Dallas after he won the National Championship in Congressional Debate at the 2015 National Speech and Debate Association National Tournament last month.

LePage apologizes to son of cartoonist he said he wanted to shoot

By Scott Thistle on July 13, 2015, at 6:24 p.m.
AUGUSTA | Maine’s Republican Gov. Paul LePage has issued a handwritten apology to the son of a Bangor Daily News cartoonist who LePage quipped he would like to shoot. LePage made the comment to Nick Danby, son of BDN cartoonist George Danby, during a question-and-answer period at Dirigo Boys …
Gov. Paul LePage talks about his budget during a Town Hall meeting at the University of Maine Hutchinson Center in Belfast in this April 28, 2015, file photo.

LePage’s attorney resists efforts to launch investigation

By Scott Thistle on July 01, 2015, at 1:47 p.m.
AUGUSTA | A top attorney for Republican Gov. Paul LePage is resisting efforts by several state lawmakers to have the Legislature’s Government Oversight Committee launch an investigation into LePage’s actions regarding House Speaker Mark Eves and a position he had been hired then fired from at the Good Will-Hinckley …
Sen. Eric Brakey, R-Auburn

Bill to allow concealed guns without permit awaits LePage

By Scott Thistle on June 30, 2015, at 5:48 p.m.
AUGUSTA | A bill that removes Maine’s requirement that those carrying a concealed handgun first obtain a permit from law enforcement passed the state Senate on a 23-12 vote Tuesday. The measure, sponsored by state Sen. Eric Brakey, R-Auburn, now moves to Gov. Paul LePage, who will have 10 …
Gov. Paul LePage

LePage vetoes state budget

By Scott Thistle on June 29, 2015, at 5:47 p.m.
AUGUSTA | The Legislature is set to reconvene Tuesday to take up a veto of the state’s next two-year budget issued by Gov. Paul LePage on Monday afternoon. The veto follows LePage’s failed attempt to make about $60 million in cuts by using his executive authority to veto 64 …