In recent elections, the candidates for governor have been members of the political establishment with minimal differences in philosophy, and no fresh ideas for changing the economic woes that have plagued Maine for decades. The gubernatorial election in 2010 offers a stark contrast in the leading candidates.

The Maine government that Paul LePage envisions will provide the necessary services for individuals and families encountering difficult circumstances.

However, he will not continue to support the large, paternalistic bureaucracy Maine currently has in place that encourages cradle-to-grave assistance and multi-generational government-sponsored welfare. Gov. LePage will provide time limits for assistance and encourage people to obtain financial freedom and break the shackles of government assistance. Paul has a proven track record in business and as mayor of Waterville for helping people succeed.

The Democratic candidate also has an impressive public track record. As the leader of both the Maine House and Senate, she has continually advocated for increases in fees and revenue enhancers, or, in plain language, increasing the tax burden for Maine citizens. During her tenure, taxes in Maine and the rolls of people requiring assistance have increased.

Maine is in an economic malaise that is becoming worse. We need a leader with experience in managing expenses and empowering individuals so “Dirigo” will be more than an attractive motto for the state of Maine.

Seldom do Maine voters have candidates with such contrasting resumes: one candidate with a proven track record of personal, governmental and business success versus a life-long member of the political establishment who has promoted increases in regulations and taxes for Maine people from her leadership positions in Maine government.

Please join me in voting for Paul LePage to lead Maine as our next governor.

Alex Arau

West Rockport

For the first time in many years, I am looking forward to voting in an election. I have often believed that we need real businessmen (or women) to run our government.

I have thought that the politicians who have been in office for years were doing us (the people) no good. So, you can imagine how thrilled I was to read the Shawn Moody for Governor website.

Shawn is a regular citizen just like you and me who has seen a need and has responded. Do yourself a favor and read Shawn’s website at www.moodygov.com, and if you have heard yourself saying the same things that Shawn is saying, tell your friends and your family.

Maine people have a history of following their own minds and electing independents to the office of governor. Let us show the old boy (and gal) politicians that “we the people” can do it better!

Shawn is “we the people,” and I thank him for stepping up to the plate for all of us.

Kathy Feldman

Gorham

What a hoot! Have you seen the Maine Republican Party attack ad about Libby Mitchell and the renovations of the State Capitol? They somehow fail to mention that the governor was Angus King and the House and Senate approved the expenditures.

And they forget to mention why the renovations were done, such as the removal of lead paint, the removal of asbestos, the installation of a modern fire-detection system, heating and cooling, flooding damage in the basement and a little thing like making our State House accessible to the handicapped in accordance with the law.

The ad talks about a $300,000 allotted for art, but doesn’t say that only $50,000 was actually spent — but aren’t we Mainers entitled to have art in our State House? And the last time the crumbling granite retaining wall and the cast-iron fencing was repaired was in 1910-1911.

Take a real look at Libby Mitchell. She has my vote, and I hope yours, too.

Claire Darrow

Georgetown

Casting a vote means endorsing a man or woman as much as it does approving their positions.

I like Eliot Cutler’s agenda for Maine, but what attracts my vote is the way I believe he will govern.

He focuses on essentials: in education, for example, on how to improve quality and relevance; in economic development, on how to support private enterprise in efforts that best come from them and firm resolve to cut procrastination and strangulation from the ways government regulates. He is realistic about financial limits. He promises no “E-ZPasses.” There is hard work for him, for the Legislature and for us citizens if we are to see meaningful change.

As Cutler campaigns, he is setting ideas out clearly. He welcomes questions, but takes time to listen, question and learn from us. A good governor needs an open, inquiring mind to stay in touch.

Cutler appreciates the importance of Maine’s historically important industries, but he also brings understanding of new opportunities. For example, his experience in China promises no magic restoration of dominant links that Maine had via its clipper ships two centuries ago; but in areas like renewable energy, he talks sensibly about Maine’s potential for new benefits from links in the global economy.

Finally, the only sure bet about the next four years is that they will bring unexpected challenges. We need a governor who sets a good example for all of us in facing new problems. Our governor should encourage collaboration and debate about how to respond, but must fight inevitable tendencies to keep going around in circles.

Eliot Cutler shows a strategic sense of how to pace our work together, and within limits on time and resources, reach realistic, affordable decisions.

William R. Dill

Portland

The Hon. Elizabeth Mitchell is definitely honorable. I place my trust in her.

Libby is running for governor of the state of Maine, as we know. Don’t trade a record for a promise! Senate President Mitchell has a record of which to be proud. It is right there in Augusta, for all to check.

This gubernatorial race should have nothing to do with religion or party and all to do with experience and delivery.

Yes, just check Libby’s record and vote for more progress for Maine and Maine people. As a former legislator, I know we need this leader.

Catherine Carswell

Portland

 

The article “LePage responds to attacks on his environmental stance,” Sept. 16, suggests that the Republican gubernatorial candidate protests too much.

In truth, Paul LePage is stridently anti-environmental, but he hopes voters will think otherwise. LePage tells reporters that “common sense, proven science and honesty would dictate environmental rules” under his administration.

Meanwhile, in other settings Le- Page reassures global warming deniers that he opposes efforts to control dangerous greenhouse gases that increasingly cause climate and weather disruption. On the Aroostook Watchmen radio show, LePage matter-of-factly called global warming a “hoax.”

In this cynical way, LePage casually dismisses the conclusions of the vast majority of mainstream scientists. The prestigious National Academy of Sciences, for example, says that global warming is an “urgent threat” and calls for rapid curbs on greenhouse gas emissions.

Sen. Olympia Snowe recognizes the concern. Snowe has said: “With overwhelming scientific evidence that global warming is adversely impacting the health of the planet, the time has come for the Congress to take action.”

Right now, Maine is among the states making progress on global warming pollution. But every governor sets a new tone and agenda. In my view, we would live to regret electing someone who would give up progress on environmental protection and surrender to global warming pollution. This year, as much as ever before, the environment our children will grow up in rests on our votes.

State Rep. Jon Hinck

D-Portland

Elizabeth Mitchell has done more for Maine than any state senator in my recent memory. She can work across party lines, including administrating the recent passing of a bipartisan balanced budget as well as a bond package creating at least 2,000 jobs.

She votes for what can be done that is positive, and has high integrity. I believe in her plan to create an economy-boosting, long-term fix for jobs in Maine by holding schools to a higher standard while giving incentives to keep skilled kids in Maine.

Believe it or not, our state has great test scores for the United States, partly because of Mitchell’s effort. If I could work with people like Libby every day, that’s what I would choose.

Rob Tisdale

Augusta

Letters published by the paper continue to express reader views on who and why anyone should vote for a candidate running for governor.

I have read many, but still fail to see how any business person should or would make a better governor of Maine. The conservatives vent this opinion most frequently of all. Let us all think about the reasons for this commonly held belief.

Somehow, many truly think that those of us fortunate enough to be owners or managers of a business are better equipped for running a state budget. However, this same group of people are hard-pressed to explain or to prove this principle with historic fact. Why is that?

Well, if looked at objectively, the facts are that former business leaders bring our economy to its knees and have a very good chance of being swayed by corporate greed and special-interest groups.

In all the elections coming this fall, the conservatives, by any name they choose to call themselves, are just a little bit stale on policy and a lot off the mark on principle. Remember to vote, folks — the right-wing control issues fade very quickly when more Americans show up at the polls. The fascists, the communists, the socialists and whatever other ghosts that Americans are afraid of simply don’t get elected at all.

Ask any Republican activist or conservative pundit what they are afraid of most, and the answer is that a larger share of registered voters will actually vote. That really tells the story of who really cares about this country’s path, doesn’t it?

Peter Hamilton

Gray

I have been watching the gubernatorial campaign closely this year. I’m a small-business owner in Portland, in the IT and telecom industry.

Our business seeks customers both in Maine, nationally and abroad. When our business succeeds, so do Mainers as we create good jobs with benefits. I’m concerned that Maine is not well-positioned to attract and create new jobs and new talents in the same way other states and countries are where we do business.

Eliot Cutler has impressed me because he understands that government’s role is not to create jobs, but rather to shape the conditions in which entrepreneurs and hard-working people can succeed and compete.

The recent economic downturn has shown us that neither a hands-off approach (as one candidate has suggested) or a highly regulatory approach (as another candidate has suggested) are silver bullets to stimulate the economy.

Instead, a thoughtful, nuanced and market-savvy strategy could make the difference for Maine. Targeted state government intervention at cutting the price of energy in Maine is a great example of Cutler’s practical and thoughtful approach.

For those thoughtful and independent-minded people out there, I urge you to take a closer look at Eliot Cutler for governor.

Joshua Broder

Portland