Politics

 
HE SAID IT RIGHT

Big money doesn’t always lead to big results

on June 23, 2017, at 5:30 a.m.
Former U.S. President Barack Obama delivers his keynote speech to the Montreal Chamber of Commerce at the Palais de Congres in Montreal on June 6, 2017.

Obama on the GOP health care plan: ‘This bill will do you harm.’

By Juliet Eilperin, Washington Post on June 22, 2017, at 8:06 p.m.
Calling the GOP leadership’s bill “a massive transfer of wealth from middle-class and poor families to the richest people in America,” Obama called on Americans to push back against congressional Republicans.
Senator Ted Cruz is one of four GOP senators who oppose the current health care bill.

Four GOP senators oppose Senate health care measure in its current form

By Sean Sullivan, Juliet Eilperin and Kelsey Snell, The Washington Post on June 22, 2017, at 3:12 p.m.
Rand Paul of Kentucky, Ted Cruz of Texas, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin and Mike Lee of Utah released a statement stating that they cannot support the bill as its currently written. Maine Sen. Susan Collins has concerns about the bill and will continue to review it in the coming days.
A woman smokes a Pall Mall cigarette. A bill that would hike the purchasing age in Maine for tobacco to 21 has been sent to the House of Representatives.

Maine bill would hike age to buy tobacco to 21, but still allow smoking at 18

By Christopher Cousins on June 22, 2017, at 1:51 p.m.
The bill only affects the legal purchasing age.
Rep. John Martin, D-Eagle Lake, (left) speaks with House Minority Leader Ken Fredette, R-Newport, at the State House in Augusta on Thursday.

To break budget stalemate, holdout House GOP offers $125 million in education funding

By Michael Shepherd on June 22, 2017, at 12:44 p.m.
It represents the first major movement in negotiations from the holdout group but it’s unclear how Democrats will respond since the plan would eliminate a surtax on high earners to generate revenue earmarked for public schools.
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley

United States rejects U.N. call for access to safe abortions

By Stephanie Nebehay, Reuters on June 22, 2017, at 12:15 p.m.
“We do not recognize abortion as a method of family planning, nor do we support abortion in our reproductive health assistance.”
Trish Lizotte, a room attendant at The Meadowmere Resort in Ogunquit, poses for a photo March 23, 2015.

Maine hospitality head optimistic feds will allow more seasonal worker visas

By Kathleen Pierce on June 22, 2017, at 12:12 p.m.
The 2,000 foreign workers stuck in limbo since March might be able to work in Maine this summer after all.
Senator Majority Leader Mitch McConnell walks to the Senate floor of the U.S. Capitol after unveiling a draft bill on health care in Washington, June 22, 2017.

Senate Republicans unveil Obamacare replacement bill

By Richard Cowan and Susan Cornwell, Reuters on June 22, 2017, at 11:51 a.m.
A seven-year push by U.S. Republicans to dismantle Obamacare and kill the taxes it imposed on the wealthy reached a critical phase Thursday, when Senate Republican leaders unveiled a draft bill they aim to put to a vote, possibly as early as next week.
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a rally at the U.S. Cellular Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, U.S. June 21, 2017.

How Americans think about the economy has changed since Trump won

By Ana Swanson, Washington Post on June 22, 2017, at 11:36 a.m.
Democrats and Republicans have never been further apart in their expectations for the economy than they are right now.
Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) questions witnesses about Russian interference in U.S. elections to the Senate Intelligence Committee in Washington, U.S., June 21, 2017.

Susan Collins may decide fate of GOP’s health care bill

By Steve Collins, Sun Journal on June 22, 2017, at 8:28 a.m.
“There are so many questions,” Collins said, and perhaps very little time to get answers. “I don’t want to miss something. It’s a very difficult situation.”
U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke smiles during a tour of the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument.

Interior Secretary Zinke wants to shed 4,000 staffers in budget cuts

By Lisa Rein, Washington Post on June 22, 2017, at 7:10 a.m.
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke told lawmakers Wednesday that he plans to shrink his department’s sprawling workforce by 4,000 employees – about 8 percent of the full-time staff – as part of budget cuts to downsize the government’s largest public lands agency.
Sen. Susan Collins said she wanted to read an assessment by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office on its impact on cost and insurance coverage before making her decision.

Senate health care bill expected to reverse Medicaid expansion

By Susan Cornwell, Reuters on June 21, 2017, at 8:29 p.m.
Sen. Susan Collins said she wanted to read an assessment by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office on its impact on cost and insurance coverage before making her decision.
ANALYSIS
Maine senators raise their right hands as they are sworn in during the first session of the 128th Legislature.

Your guide to what stands between Maine and a state budget

By Michael Shepherd on June 21, 2017, at 4:33 p.m.
The legislative divide is mostly about education funding, but with LePage’s backing, House Republicans also want significant school reforms.
U.S. Senator Angus King (I-ME) asks questions at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) in Washington, U.S., June 7, 2017.

Sen. King calls for prioritizing election security in wake of Russian hacking attempts

By staff on June 21, 2017, at 3:15 p.m.
“It’s going to be back, and shame on us if we’re not prepared.”
Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap

$50M bond referendum for research projects approved by Maine voters

By Christopher Cousins on June 21, 2017, at 1:26 p.m.
Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap has certified that nearly 61 percent of voters in last week’s statewide bond referendum approved the borrowing plan.
The Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians held their election for tribal chief and council members Saturday. The results of that election are being contested after long-time chief Brenda Commander was beaten by Clairissa E. Sabattis by a mere two votes.

Maliseets continue pursuit of casino for The County

on June 21, 2017, at 11:53 a.m.
“We have heard that the bill may be reconsidered in the Senate with an amendment to include a statewide referendum,” said Chief Clairissa Sabbatis of the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians.
Wiscasset, Maine

Wiscasset selectmen withdraw support for Route 1 traffic fix

on June 21, 2017, at 11:21 a.m.
Selectmen voted 3-2 to reverse their previous vote in support of a version of the MDOT’s downtown traffic project that involves removing on-street parking on Main Street between Middle and Water streets.
Democratic Rep. Mick Devin

Maine legislator charged with OUI

By J.W. Oliver on June 21, 2017, at 10:48 a.m.
State Rep. Michael G. “Mick” Devin, D-Newcastle, faces a misdemeanor charge of operating under the influence.
Former Maine Gov. John McKernan

Public reaction to 1991 Maine government shutdown: ‘We want his head’

By Mal Leary on June 21, 2017, at 10:27 a.m.
Out-of-work state employees were not getting paid, could not get unemployment and were angry.
ANALYSIS

Maine lawmakers seem too busy arguing to pass a budget

By Michael Shepherd on June 21, 2017, at 9:55 a.m.
Things got testy on Tuesday about what seemed like everything but the budget.