Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Not a good way to start the 2016 Legislative Session

The Maine Legislature opens its 2016 session Wednesday morning and early indications would seem to indicate it'll be just as contentious as last year's session.

According to WCSH6 Newscenter's Don Carrigan on the Monday evening news, Maine's Democrat legislators want to begin not with important issues facing Mainers but rather with more attack on Gov. Paul LePage.  This doesn't seem to me as a good beginning as it'll start the session already saying their agenda is more important than Maine's problems and it certainly won't put the governor in a bi-partisan mood to work with the Legislature.

Carrigan's report, which you can read here, says at least a few Dems plan to open the session with either an outright call for an impeachment of the governor or, at the very least, an attempt to censure him for his actions.

The issue is not regarding any perceived Maine need but rather revenge on the alleged threat by LePage to withhold funds from a charter school if it hired Dem. Mark Eves for its staff.  An official of the school did testify that he received a threatening note from LePage to that issue, but could not produce the note at a hearing. 

The Dems also told Carrigan that other issues they perceive as the governor going beyond his authority last year.

Carrigan reported that most Republicans do not support this opening of the session.  Even some Democrats simply want the issue put behind them and to move forward.

Even Dem. Attorney General Janel Mills has said the governor has not committed a crime and she has nothing she can do about the alleged situation.

No matter what they want, this type of session beginning does not bode well for a productive 2016 Legislative session.

Meanwhile, WCSH6 uses the Portland Press Herald as a source to tell us that Gov. LePage's lawyers will file a motion next week in the courts to have a personal lawsuit against him by Eves dismissed claiming diplomatic immunity.

I for one am sorry to see this session of the Legislature opening on this note.  Although I didn't expect harmony, I was hoping my expectation was wrong.


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