If Paul LePage thinks the questions are tough now, just wait until he’s governor.

Maine’s gubernatorial front-runner, and Waterville mayor, stormed from the State House on Monday following a tense confrontation with political reporters over questions of his wife’s residency and property tax breaks. The media were aggressive. So was LePage.

And while the blunt questioning of LePage was one of those moments that make voters weary of the media, the Republican candidate’s defensiveness, belligerence and – worst of all – lack of coherent answers should raise concerns about his suitability to govern.

The issues facing Maine are more than challenging. They are crippling in complexity and severe in impact. Billion-dollar budget shortfalls are not closed with glib phrases or fist-pounding demands. Governing is working with the opposition, not shouting them down.

Whether Ann LePage, the candidate’s wife, is a legal resident of Florida or Maine is not critical to his campaign. What is more important is whether the candidate knew about the tax impropriety that came along with it, and whether he was complicit in creating it.

Here’s why: Maine and Florida laws apparently have been broken. LePage’s wife has a permanent resident tax credit in both states. If Maine can’t trust its potential governor to follow basic tax code, it should have reservations about having him write it.

These reservations could be quieted, though, with a much more complete explanation that answers the all questions reporters raised. One, we must note, we’re still waiting to hear.

To his credit, however, LePage returned to the scene of the spectacle later Monday to chat cordially with reporters. He admitted mistakes in his statements. It was the right move. It was the smart move. It was the move that a savvy governor would make.

But which Paul LePage is running for office? So far, we’ve seen more of his blunderbuss politics than the sharpshooter. We understand that campaigns can be frustrating for candidates. (Our reply: Try reporting on them.) But governing is much harder.

Governors can try to have an iron hand. The success of their agendas, though, can depend on their ability to swallow some pride. LePage has shown plenty of the former and little of the latter, except for his second visit to the State House on Monday.

The candidate must also realize that an effective governor must be Maine’s ambassador, not only to other states and Washington, but to other nations as well.

An ill-tempered diplomat is worthless. Sometimes, you must smile when you really want to scream.

LePage, too, has shown a proclivity for dodging questions during this campaign. He’s skipped plenty of public forums (as has his Democratic opponent) and now, when substantive explanations must be provided, he elected to react with indignation.

He was wrong to do so. The heat under this campaign is only now starting to boil.

If Paul LePage can’t stand it, there’s always the kitchen door.