Letters submitted by BDN readers are verified by BDN Opinion Page staff. Send your letters to letters@bangordailynews.com.

Don’t let Linn waste time

Friday’s debate between the four U.S. Senate candidates was a disgrace. We could have had a rigorous and spirited exchange of ideas between three articulate and highly qualified individuals. Instead, Max Linn’s farcical performance overshadowed and threatened to derail the whole evening. Leave it to a man to think he can bluster his way through one of our most important democratic traditions.

I have no issue with allowing candidates with low poll numbers to take part in our debates. Lisa Savage is unlikely to win many votes, yet she provided a refreshing perspective, especially when she gave her take on corporate donations and healthcare. Linn, on the other hand, repeatedly rejected the moderator’s questions, ranted about his “bombshell” lawsuit against CMP, and later introduced us to his “converter” website, the likes of which, he claims, has never been seen in American politics before.

His performance was an abomination, reminiscent at times of a Ron Popeil infomercial, albeit without the smile and charm. Apparently, even the most seemingly unprepared candidate can get on the ballot in Maine. That doesn’t mean we need to give such individuals airtime. The sponsors of future debates ought to create more stringent criteria for which candidates get to participate. The consequences of our elections are too important to let people like Max Linn waste our time.

Blake Cass

Seal Cove

Reelect Cyrway

Scott Cyrway, raised in Central Maine, assumed office in December 2014, and has served Maine well for the past six years, representing Senate District 16, Albion, Benton, Clinton, Fairfield, Unity Township., Waterville and Winslow. He has always been easily accessible to those he serves and a willing listener to their needs.

Previous to serving in the Senate, Scott enjoyed mentoring and instructing young students in the Drug Abuse Resistance Education program and has a strong interest in law enforcement. Whether in the areas of criminal justice and public safety, veterans and legal affairs, or protection of the environment, Sen. Cyrway has been a leading advocate, helping to keep our communities safe.

The accumulated experiences in his first three terms as senator will benefit all Maine citizens if he is elected to another two year term. We are very lucky to have someone with his dedication, passion and skill serving our interests in the Senate. I appreciate the fact that he believes in fiscal responsibility in matters of spending and borrowing to keep Maine’s budget at an affordable level, especially at a time when many Mainers have suffered the loss of their jobs or a decline in their wages.

In this challenging time due to COVID-19, Cyrway’s office continues to receive calls for assistance in many matters and he responds promptly to their requests. Cyrway has proven himself to be worthy of our trust and I strongly support his reelection to the Maine Senate.

Judy Icenogle

Winslow

Collins and price transparency

In her debate with Speaker of the House Sara Gideon, Sen. Susan Collins said price transparency was key to fixing health care, not the public option that Gideon advocates. Permit me to be gobsmacked!

Look, we got Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act because the country was desperate with the costs of medical care, and the failure of our job-based insurance system to provide anything like adequately broad coverage was generating massive suffering.

I don’t recall then any Republicans proposing that transparent pricing throughout the system as a serious solution. The conservative Heritage Foundation had produced the outlines of what became Mitt Romney’s Massachusetts health care plan, which in turn became a basis of Obamacare, or the ACA.

So, because the ACA was built on a system that still protected under regulation the interests of the big insurers and drug corporations in the market, did the Republicans accept the opportunity to claim credit and collaborate with the Democrats to make an effort to really solve this problem? Even after the Democrats gave up — sadly — on trying to include a public option that would broaden competition and address the problem of still too limited access that trapped many between the Medicaid part and the regular insurance part?

Back then, suggesting that we could wave the magic wand of price transparency to solve the whole matter would have gotten anyone laughed out of Washington, D.C. Susan Collins was in the middle of all that, so she can’t claim ignorance.

I think she’s gaslighting us.

Philip Keith

Farmington

Golden’s health care work

For many of my 34 years as a family doctor in Maine, I watched my patients struggle with access to health care, especially if they had pre-existing conditions, or were due for important cancer screenings or immunizations, or required a prescription that was so expensive that it was out of the question for them. The Affordable Care Act and then the expansion of MaineCare went a long way towards addressing these challenges.

Now, in the midst of a pandemic, President Donald Trump and his supporters in Congress continue to work to repeal the ACA, first through legislation and now through court

challenges. I know that Rep. Jared Golden has and will continue to fight to lower prescription drug costs, to protect the ACA and to expand access to affordable care by supporting a Medicare buy in option. And he has played a vital role in pushing to make Paycheck Protection Program funds available for our rural hospitals in Lincoln and Calais.

Mainers in the 2nd Congressional District know who works in their interests – it is Jared Golden.

Noah Nesin

Glenburn

Myers for County Commissioner

Have people in Piscataquis County seen a movie at the Center Theater? Have they seen the birthday of a friend posted up on the marquee? Did they go to any of the drive-in movies at the arena? Have they gone to the whoopie pie festival? In addition to watching the budget and keeping the theater in the black, all of these events have been successfully engineered by Patrick Myers, director of the theater, who is now running for County Commissioner.

Would people like to see Myers bring the same efficiency, financial responsibility and cooperative attitude to county government? I would, and I encourage them also to vote for Myers. If he helps the county run as well as the theater does, we’ll be in good shape here in Piscataquis!

David Frasz

Dover Foxcroft