Monday, December 9, 2013
Former Gov. John Baldacci donned a Catholics for Marriage Equality apron in Bangor tonight to host the first of two spaghetti suppers to show his support for gay marriage.
Wearing a turtle neck, slacks, tennis shoes and the apron, the governor ladled spaghetti onto plates at the Bangor High School cafeteria. The Democrat signed gay marriage into law in 2009, only to see it repealed by voters 53-47 percent.
"I evolved on the issue," he said, sounding a bit like President Obama. "I had always thought that civil unions were the state's responsibility and marriages were in the church."
But he asked his legal adviser at the time, Pat Ende, to research the issue and changed his mind when Ende told him there were hundreds of places in Maine law that provided benefits and responsibilities only to married couples.
"You can't have different categories for different people," he said just before the dinner began.
Baldacci, who grew up in a large Catholic family in Bangor, is now working in Portland at Pierce Atwood, where he's a senior adviser on economic development.
Catholics for Marriage Equality cooked enough spaghetti for 300, and plans to donate the proceeds to Bangor area homeless shelters. Volunteers at the spaghetti supper included Baldacci Chief of Staff Jane Lincoln and lobbyist Severin Beliveau. Cheryl Clukey, mother of Winter Olympian Julia Clukey helped serve, as did former Green Independent gubernatorial candidate Pat LaMarche. Jack Cashman, who served as Baldacci's economic adviser, was spotted waiting in line and former Rep. Eddie Dugay, D-Cherryfield, was there as well.Tweet
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Colin Woodard has covered politics and elections for more than two decades, from Bosnia and Bucharest to Washington, D.C., Augusta, and Portland City Hall. He has written for a wide range of national and international publications and is the author of four books, including "American Nations," a history of North America's regional cultures. He joined the Portland Press Herald at the end of April and covers political finance and lobbying, among other things.
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