26 June 2015

If He Doesn't Get Impeached, Paul LePage Should Be Horsewhipped in the Public Square

In the Maine State House, Speaker Speaker Mark Eves has been a consistent thorn in the side in the side of Governor, and Teabagger Supremo, Paul LePage.

Because of this, LePage threatened to pull funding a the school that had recently hired him:
The board of Good Will-Hinckley School withdrew its job offer to House Speaker Mark Eves just days before he was to become the school’s new president, making the decision after Gov. Paul LePage apparently threatened to withhold state funding for the school.

The school said Wednesday that the board of directors had “voted to seek a new direction for the institution’s leadership” in order to avoid “political controversy.” But Eves’ attorney said the state legislator had been “terminated … without cause” and hinted at legal action against the governor.

Eves, meanwhile, released a statement accusing LePage of “blackmailing” the school for at-risk youths by threatening to cut $500,000 in state funding. He said that could potentially cause the loss of another $2 million in private funding for the school, which has an annual budget of $4.5 million.

“The governor knows that these financial losses would put the school out of business, but he has refused to back down,” said Eves, D-North Berwick. “This is an abuse of power that jeopardizes Maine children. The governor’s actions represent the worst kind of vendetta politics Maine has ever seen. If it goes unchecked, no legislator will feel safe in voting his conscience for fear that the governor will go after the legislator’s family and livelihood.”

Good Will-Hinckley, in Fairfield, announced June 9 that it had hired Eves as the school’s new president despite a last-minute intercession by LePage. On Wednesday, board Chairman Jack Moore announced the decision to withdraw the offer to Eves, who was scheduled to begin work next Wednesday.

“The basis for this decision is grounded in the institution’s desire not to be involved in political controversy that will divert attention away from our core mission of serving children and has the potential to jeopardize the future of our school,” Moore said in a prepared statement. “Good Will-Hinckley has a very dedicated staff. The board’s first priority is to act in the best interest of students and educators alike and the board’s actions reflect its unwavering commitment to them.”
Eves is seriously considering suing LePage, and it appears that "Hizzoner" made his threats in writing.

The Maine Attorney General is also, "Very troubled," by the Governor's behavior, though she has issued no further comment.

My first question was, "Where is the impeachment investigation?"

Well, here it is:
Six lawmakers said Thursday they will attempt to launch impeachment proceedings against Republican Gov. Paul LePage for his alleged role in pushing Democratic House Speaker Mark Eves out of a new job at Good Will-Hinckley School.

Independent Reps. Jeffrey Evangelos of Friendship and Ben Chipman of Portland and Democratic Reps. Pinny Beebe-Center of Rockland, Lydia Blume of York, Roberta Beavers of South Berwick and Charlotte Warren of Hallowell said Thursday they are exploring disciplinary action against LePage, including impeachment.

“I’m asking my fellow legislators to study abuse of authority, conduct unbecoming and possible misuse of public assets,” said Evangelos, who is leading the effort. “I believe that Gov. LePage has violated his authority by intimidating a private entity with the end objective of violating speaker Eves’ civil rights, his ability to seek outside employment and provide for his family.”

The House of Representatives has “sole power of impeachment” according to Article 4 of the Maine Constitution. The Senate has the “sole authority to try all impeachments.” Impeachment requires a two-thirds vote of the Senate.
Unfortunately, the leadership in the House are going all wobbly on this:
Democratic leaders on Friday said they are reviewing all options to deal with what they describe as a disturbing pattern of behavior by Republican Gov. Paul LePage. At the same time, they have asked their colleagues to not act rashly and to stay focused on legislative work – especially an override of an expected LePage budget veto that will require a bipartisan, two-thirds vote.

House majority leader Rep. Jeff McCabe, D-Skowhegan, and assistant leader Rep. Sara Gideon, D-Freeport, said that “nothing is off the table,” when it comes to possible actions against LePage, but they urged restraint among activists and rank-and-file lawmakers.

The two spoke a day after House Speaker Mark Eves, D-North Berwick, said that LePage threatened to yank state funding from the Good Will-Hinckley school unless it broke its contract to hire Eves as its next president. The story has dominated discussion at the state Capitol, where attention had been focused on getting a state budget passed, with members of both parties expressing concern that LePage overstepped his executive power by using funding for the school as a weapon against a political foe.


The Eves controversy has prompted a call for impeachment – unprecedented in Maine gubernatorial history – among some liberal lawmakers and activists. On Friday, McCabe and Gideon didn’t rule out such a proceeding, but focused more on the possibility of an investigation, by either state or federal authorities.

“Based on some of the comments that the governor has had recently, as well as his actions with Speaker Eves and impeding Speaker Eves from obtaining a job, I think there’s a lot of research that’s going to go on,” McCabe said. “There’s also some pending legal matters. So there’s nothing that’s off the table, but there’s a lot of research that needs to be done.”
Too many weasel words from the leadership.

This sort of sh%$ has former Texas Governor Rick Perry under indictment in Texas.  Do the people of Maine really want to be on the wrong side of abuse of power and Texas?

In that case, Perry had the fig leaf of a  DUI arrest for the DA, but here, the Governor is claiming that his threats are only as a result of the political stances of an opponent.

I hope not.


Post a Comment