LETTERS

Thursday, Oct. 18, 2012: Favorite candidates, negative tone, too much noise

Posted Oct. 17, 2012, at 1:22 p.m.
Last modified Oct. 17, 2012, at 5:32 p.m.

Election Day registration

Democracy works best when more of us vote. We are given the privilege of voting regarding the issues that face our nation and our state. I am a strong believer that I have a duty to vote in each election to make sure that my voice is heard.

Since 1973 Maine has permitted Election Day registration. This practice has increased voter participation and trouble free elections. In 2010, Maine was ranked number one in voter turnout; and same-day voter registration is one of the reasons Maine does so well. When the Legislature tried to repeal this popular and successful law, the people responded by voting overwhelming last November to restore it.

During public hearings on the proposed legislation to repeal Election Day registration, no evidence was provided that this practice had caused any problems during the 38 years it has been the law in Maine. We, as a state, have made it clear to our legislature that we want to break

down barriers to voting. We want each of us to have a voice. We are all diminished, our democracy is diminished, if we do not work vigilantly to protect not only our own rights, but also the rights of our fellow citizens.

Our secretary of state has now created a commission to study voting rights in Maine. We should again make it clear that we want to protect our fundamental constitutional right to vote. Repealing Election Day registration will mean that fewer people participate in Maine elections, which is bad for everyone.

Jane Clayton

Veazie

Vote for Schneck will make a difference

I am writing in support of John Schneck, candidate for state representative, District 16, Bangor. I have known John and his wife, Mary, for many years. We sat on the soccer and field hockey courts, watched our children play and talked for many hours. John has shown his dedication to the Bangor community by living, working and raising his kids here.

One of his top priorities is to make sure that young people living in Bangor have access to excellent public education. We both agree that this is vital to our future.

Another priority is to lower the cost of healthcare in Maine. We both agree that recent laws passed in Maine that deregulate insurance companies, have given corporations free rein to force families to choose between food, medicine and basic needs.

Candidates that believe Maine people are more important than corporations must be sent to Augusta.

John owned a successful small business for many years; he is acutely aware of the need to bring people together with opposing views in order to find solutions. During these hard economic times, and as a gallery owner in downtown Bangor, John and I have discussed the necessity to find common-sense solutions for economic hardship, revitalization, and working hard across all party lines to move Maine government beyond its current state of dysfunction.

I hope you will support and vote for John Schneck, state representative, District 16 on Nov. 6. Your vote makes all the difference!

Roxanne Munksgaard

Bangor

Negative tone

Is there really any wonder why so few of the eligible voters in this country actually vote? Daily, we are bombarded with personal attacks, half-truths and outright lies in an effort to convince us that one candidate or another is unworthy of our support. We have come to expect such from candidates in our federal and high-level state elections, but it is a measure of how far political discourse has fallen when it reaches our local and legislative elections.

Recently I received a flier attacking state Rep. Jim Parker (R). It was an advocacy piece for Aaron Frey. Its main graphic was a caricature of Parker with thumbs-up to a home with a foreclosure sign on it. This is the kind of “facts don’t matter” politicking that has so jaded the electorate.

I have known Jim Parker for many years. He has done much for our community. He is experienced, compassionate and an advocate for all in his district including us in the lower and middle class. He is a member of the United Way Leaders Circle, contributes to the Bangor

Homeless Shelter, supports the programs of the Charlotte White Center and is working to keep the Dorothea Dix facility in our community. He is a retired environmental engineer and has done a fine job for us. He deserves re-election.

Mr. Frey would do well to disavow and discontinue the negative campaigning and tell us why he is worthy of consideration.

Bill Riley

Bangor

Concert noise ‘outrageous’

Efforts by the Bangor City Council to curb disruptive behaviors which diminish the quality of life of the city’s residential neighborhoods is to be commended.

Can anyone explain how the same city council that is considering an ordinance which would fine residents for noise audible beyond a resident’s property line can ignore the outrageous noise levels generated by Alex Grey’s Waterfront Concerts, which can be heard for miles?

Carl Rella

Bangor

Levesque a leader with innovative ideas

I first met Dan Levesque when I was representing Presque Isle in the Maine House of Representatives. At the time, Gov. Baldacci and rural legislators like me were working to find cost-effective ways to expand high-speed Internet access to every corner of the state.

It was essential to growing Maine’s economy, but the largest providers did not want to lay additional cable. That’s when Levesque called — he had an idea.

Levesque and I met and drove to the peak of a hill just outside Presque Isle. He pointed up at a cell phone tower and then handed me binoculars and told me to look miles to the west at another tower.

He wanted to mount a transmitter on the first tower and then bounce a high-speed Internet signal from tower to tower across western Aroostook County. By using existing cell towers, providers like him could ensure that almost every family and business in rural Maine would have access. It was an innovative solution to an important problem.

Now, at this time of unprecedented challenges facing our state, Maine needs leaders like Levesque in Augusta who understand the challenges and how they affect rural communities. We need leaders with innovative solutions.

I know Levesque, and I know he’s just the type of leader our state needs. I hope you’ll support his candidacy for the state Senate on Nov. 6.

Jeremy R. Fischer

Portland

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