Let's avoid the wedge issues in this year's race

"The business of Maine is going to be business," Republican candidate for Maine governor Paul LePage told about 100 supporters last week at a rally on the steps of the Waterville City Hall.

We hope LePage can maintain that message discipline over the next five months leading up to the general election. In fact, we hope all the candidates in the race can do the same.

It won't be easy.

Two weeks before the primary, a TV debate moderator threw LePage a curveball question: "Do you believe in creationism, and do you think it should be taught in Maine public schools?"

Creationists believe that evolution alone cannot account for the diversity and order of life on Earth, and that the hand of a creating deity must have been involved. Most scientists believe otherwise.

While this has been a hot topic in some states, it has not been an issue here, and it doesn't seem to have been part of LePage's platform, which does include opposition to abortion and gay marriage.

And his answer seemed to reflect that he wasn't expecting the question:

"I would say intelligence, uh, the more education you have the more knowledge you have the better person you are, and I believe yes and yes."

Ah, a wedge issue is born. Paul LePage is a creationist.

Soon, liberal bloggers were tearing into the issue and the website dirigoblue.com was offering bumper stickers for $4.65, "No Creationism in Public Schools. No Paul LePage."

This is how manufactured issues can take over a campaign and knock candidates off their established priorities.

Which was one of the warnings delivered by LePage's former Republican opponents as they locked arms behind him last week and vowed to support him in the general election — stick to the basics.

It's the economy. It's jobs, it's about the efficiency and effectiveness of state government.

Don't get dragged into social issues and, by all means, distance yourself from the more radical tenets of the tea party.

The next governor of Maine isn't going to abolish the Federal Reserve, block the Law of the Sea Treaty and return America to the principles of Austrian Economics, no matter what the Knox County wing of the Republican Party would like to see happen.

Far and away more Mainers would be happy to have secure jobs, lower taxes and a brighter future for their children.

Of course, anybody has a right to ask any candidate any question they want. But we wish more candidates had the self-restraint not to take the bait.

Creationism?

"I have my views on that, but it is simply not relevant to the issues before us, like jobs, taxes and building our economy."

When our next governor gets those things straightened out, perhaps then we can work on the mysteries of the universe.

editorialboard@sunjournal.com

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PAUL ST JEAN's picture

BECAUSE THEY CAN'T HANDLE THE

BECAUSE THEY CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH....Jack Nicholson, "A Few Good Men" circa I don't know.

 's picture

naw, we've had this discussion before,

and I proved that teabaggers started calling themselves that, but then, of course , the right wing wackos simply denied it, just like when the teabaggers shouted epithets, spit on congressmen and all the other nasty things you guys do.
BTW, when did we pass socialize medicine? We didn't, but you guys will call it that anyway. Perhaps we can get in some meaningful discussions when you guys decide to use English as a common language.

Jonathan Albrecht's picture

By the way

paintmainered has removed the 2010 Maine Republican Platform from its website. Guess hiding is catching on.

Jonathan Albrecht's picture

2010 Maine Republica Platform

"Oppose any and all treaties with the UN or any other organization or country which surrenders US sovereignty." This seems simple enough and as one poster on paintmainered wrote there is not room for interpretation (of the platform). But this plank betrays the paranoid delusions and the ignorance that are at the heart of the Tea Party movement.
All treaties the US signs must comply with the US Constitution (not the Tea Party's Constitution). Sovereignty is inherent in nationhood. A treaty that violated our sovereignty would be null and void. So why bring the subject even up. Because the Tea Party is motivated by ultra-nationalism and its mirror isolationism and its complement American exceptionalism. They see any relationship with other countries good or bad as a threat to those views.
Today the Tea Party is a democratic fascist movement funded by big business and for now peaceful. But soon we may have to drop the "peaceful". All the elements are there specifically ultra-nationalism for this movement to become a real threat to the Constitution.

Jonathan Albrecht's picture

Repudiate

When LePage repudiates the 2010 Maine Republican Platform, I stop writing about it.

Jonathan Albrecht's picture

Coverup

Normally platforms don't matter. The platform is written by one group and candidates elected by another. Rarely do the two meet and the platform is discarded within minutes of being approved. But not this one. The radical 2010 Maine Republican Platform was authored by two LePage staffers and then sent to the Knox County Chairman to coverup its origins.
Whats wrong, thinkingman. Its not a theory. Creationism is an assertion with no scientific validity at all. Probably the most recent case was Dover, Pa. Where creationist hid their views from the public as Rand Paul, Sharron Angle, and Paul LePage are doing now. They got elected and soon tried to bring creationism into the classroom. The case went to court and they lost. The judge found that creationism isn't science and that books used to teach it were direct copies of religious textbooks.
This election will be about jobs. Republican job killers who have caused every recession in modern times in our country against Democrats who create jobs and a working economy.
But its also going to be about the radical views of the extremists who have taken over the Republican Party.

 's picture

What is really sad, are people trying

to misrepresent what people are complaining about. NO ONE has attacked Mr. LePage on this beliefs, just the fact the SJ doesn't want us to know what they are. I believe we should learn everything about every candidate BEFORE making our minds up. I know I will, but I respect that you will not do the same. The problem is I already know more about Mitchell, Moody and Cutler, than about LePage. He's hiding and the SJ is aiding and abetting his strategy of not revealing himself and his ideas to the public. He will probably do what he did during the primary, run a blitz at the last minute, confuse the voters and hope to squeak in before anyone has the opportunity to truly understand what kind of person he is. It worked in the primary, and it may just work for the general election. But since he would be Governor for four years, it would be nice to know what he's about BEFORE he's elected.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

"...it would be nice to know

"...it would be nice to know what he's about before he's elected".
Why? oBAMa's congress passed his health care bill without knowing what was in it. Ask Nancy Pelosi. This morning they passed another economy related bill that no one knows (a direct quote) how it will work until it actually goes into effect. You and your ilk dont' ever worry about stuff like that, but you're concerned with what LePage is about? How droll.

Jonathan Albrecht's picture

Nell

if you believe this - "socialist agenda which Washington is trying to cram down our throats" - you demonstrate the lack of political judgement that makes LePage and the Tea Partiers a threat to our Constitution and sound government for the better part of 220 years. There is no socialist agenda. There is no attempt to implement any such thing. I know what socialists believe and want and it has nothing to do with what is going on in Washington.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

it not Socialism, it has to

it not Socialism, it has to be Marxism.

Jonathan Albrecht's picture

LePage

First, LePage staffers wrote the platform adopted by the extremists in the Republican Party. These are his views. They reflect what he wants to do. They are very germane to his conduct as Governor and should be the center of this campaign.
Second, these views are so extreme as this editorial points out that its not concievable that they would be implemented. But many people have said that before about other candidates here and in other countries.
Third, extremism must always be fought.
Fourth, even if we are mistaken and LePage really doesn't agree with the party's platform and his staffers involvement in writing it, those staffers and other extremists will come into office with LePage. That represents a material threat to the children of Maine.
Fifth, we do need to save this state and its people from folks who will not believe their own eyes, who reject objective facts, who believe themselves always right and the rest of the world always wrong.
Sixth, Maine needs jobs; it needs businesses; it needs economic development. But we are not so desperate that we will turn over the state to a junk dealer.
Defeat LePage. Center this campaign on Republican extremism.

Mark Turek's picture

Get to know the real Paul LePage

The Extreme Far-Lefties like tron will destroy our state if we don't stop their games in November. In short, if you're not familiar with what Paul LePage stands for, please take a few minutes and simply visit his website at http://www.lepage2010.com - note the various position statements and informational videos. If you have questions/concerns, send him an email and see how he responds.
** LePage for Governor 2010 **

GARY SAVARD's picture

I agree with the editorial.

I agree with the editorial. Maine can't currently pay it's obligations to Cities and Towns, which has caused all kinds of budget problems on local levels statewide. The next governor needs to be capable of fixing our out of control taxing and spending, and making State government more compatible with job creation by the private sector. These factors far outweigh personal beliefs on evolution or creationism, abortion, and gay marriage. As a catholic, I have my beliefs on these moral issues, but that doesn't diminish my capacity to function as a person or licensed professional. Let the real issues, not the BS, be the deciding factor in electing our next governor and legislature in November.

Mark Wrenn's picture

wedgie

Why does the Sun Journal feel they need to protect LePage from the electorate? Aren't all of his views relevant, even the "wedgie" issues? What did Jesus name his dinosaur?

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

C'mon, Lil...everyone knows

C'mon, Lil...everyone knows that; T Rex.....

Ellen Levesque's picture

The people who refer to the

The people who refer to the Tea Party as teabaggers seem to think that if they call them names enough and say hurtfull things about them enough, they will go away. While I am not a member, it would seem that they are only trying to take back our country from the socialist agenda which Washington is trying to cram down our throats. Paul LePage seems to be a breath of fresh air against Libby Mitchell and her "more of the same for Maine" ways. Tron makes fun of Mr Lepage working at his job while the lady with the money is out campaigning. I say good for him. There is plenty of time to get his word out. Go Paul Lepage!!!

 's picture

teabaggers are what they first called themselves,

teabaggers are what they are. There is nothing sordid about the name teabaggers.

Now Mr. LePage is "working" instead of campaigning? When does this job become important enough for him to take this seriously, before or after the election? And don't make light of Ms. Mitchell's wealth, she earned it. And if Marden's cannot run without Mr. LePage, then perhaps his operating style isn't compatible with running a state. You cannot run it alone, and if he cannot delgate authority to run Marden's, what can we expect when he tries to run the state?

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

"teabaggers are what they

"teabaggers are what they are. There is nothing sordid about the name teabaggers." If that is true, then you won't be offended if I say that I think you are a teabagger, and I am referencing the pure definition of the term. But, it isn't sordid so, you're o.k. with me saying that, right? You and the parrot are still best buds, right?

John Clement's picture

no the real issue with him is

no the real issue with him is he is on welfare and like most others trapped in a world they have a love hate relationship with, (love being paid to do nothing but hate not being able to do anything) they think it is a zero-sum game. If someone or something gets a little more, they get a little less. Everytime taxes have been cut it results in an increase of tax revenue to the state or fed. There is no such thing as corporate welfare. Do you see CEO's sitting on the door step drinking 40 ouncer's out of a bag? Do they roam the streets in packs with pitbulls? Do they get young girls pregnant, leave them to go on to the next one and not accept responsibility for their actions? Corportations don't have to stay here if the taxes are too high, they can leave and some have left. Make it a business friendly climate and then more people will be able to work, pay taxes, take care of their families, and help those less fortunate that truly need help.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

I don't understand why Tron

I don't understand why Tron et al are so angry and unhappy. They have a liberal president, a liberal congress, the paragons of liberalism in Biden, Pelosi and Reid, and yet, all you get from the libmos is vitriol, name calling and overall malcontent. They have everything; but hate everything. Can someone explain this? No one expects conservatives and liberals to agree on many things, but why all this hatred and anger towards opposition and differing points of view? Quite puzzling. And yes, I expect to get a bunch of smartass, name calling filled responses from Tron, DDSD, XYZ and a few others whose names escape me at this time. But, honestly, is it all necessary?

 's picture

So the candidate, Mr. LePage, who embraced

the teabaggers and received their votes, should now walk away from the tenets they espouse? Why are these issues not germane to the campaign? Seems the SJ wants Mr. Lepage to win so much, that they don't want him to reveal his convictions, less some people get turned off. Don't you think it's relevant whether or not he believes what the teabaggers wrote into the republican platform, or are we suppose to ignore it? But you're right, he must tell us how he plans to get jobs for Maine. It's going to involve giving corporate welfare, the bounds of which we've never seen, to date, and in order to balance the budget he'll have to cut somewhere. So does he plan to let grandma eat dog food again? Have the homeless line all the Main Streets of the major cities? Or is he going to finally tax limousine service, dog grooming and other rich people's activities or just take from the least among us and give to corporate fat cats? The problem seems to be a ghost campaign. Has anyone seen Mr. LePage in the last week? Oh, he's working, so running for governor is not important enough to put all his time into it. That's a first clue. Will he be a part time governor? We're waiting for some answers.

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