It is inaccurate and completely overblown to suggest that Paul LePage has not been accessible or visible as part of his campaign for Maine governor.

I would list the 29 campaign forums and televised debates that Paul LePage has or will participate in since the end of August, but I have limited space to respond.

In the interest of brevity, I will point out that Paul LePage will have taken part in three televised events this final week of the campaign — the WAGM debate in Presque Isle at the start of the week, WABI in Bangor on Wednesday and the final debate hosted by WGME today.

Paul LePage’s “People before Politics” tour is about getting away from the distraction of the establishment made up by career politicians and appointees, lobbyists and special interests. For a year now this establishment has been trying to beat away at LePage despite his strong record of accomplishment as a mayor in Waterville and as a job creator at Marden’s.

Maybe we need to include among those considered to be in the establishment editorial writers who believe that they speak for Maine voters when the polls tell us otherwise.

Paul LePage has attended, on average, one forum or debate every other day since Labor Day. He has been on radio call-in shows, held press conferences, hosted rallies at our hospitals and sat for dozens of television and print interviews.

He made the decision to meet with voters and job creators in Penobscot County on Thursday rather than take part in the fourth televised debate of the week. We will find out soon enough if the voters share your outrage.

Dan Demeritt
press secretary, LePage for Governor
Waterville

 

Your newspaper revealed its lunacy in last weekend’s endorsements.

Maine has two excellent representatives in Chellie Pingree and Mike Michaud. You acknowledge as much in your explanations but back two unproven, questionable-on-social-issues Republicans. Of course, you don’t mention the social issues in your editorials.

You also pull a real sneaky ploy in your endorsement of Eliot Cutler. A vote for him is a vote for Paul LePage because it keeps Democratic votes away from Libby Mitchell.

This is Maine, and your newspaper has shown that it does not understand Maine values or beliefs. It really is too bad you’re the only daily in town. I guess my only option is to keep reading and laughing at your Fox News prejudice towards intelligent, logical decision-making.

I now have Rush Limbaugh, Glen Beck and the Portland Press Herald to keep me constantly amused. I’m just glad that none of you will have an effect on the race in Maine.

Richard J. Lawson
Gorham

 

The MaineToday Media endorsement board has shown its true colors, those of a right-wing rag. Maine Today Media is nothing more than a mouthpiece for corporate business, social conservatives, and tea party members. Perhaps if Paul LePage had the courage to sit before the endorsement board he would have been assured of a rubber stamp endorsement by this Republican mouthpiece.

Dave Jones
Yarmouth

 

Some communities have full-time, full-salaried and full-responsibility mayors. Some communities have part-time, minimal-salaried and limited-responsibility mayors.

I don’t know any community that has a limited-responsibility, full-salaried mayor. But that is precisely what is being proposed for Portland.

It may well be time for Portland to have a popularly elected Mayor. But if it is, it should be done right.

If we change the charter now, we will live with the results for years. So instead of a schizophrenic attempt at a compromise, let’s first figure out what we really want. And what we can afford.

If we want a popularly elected mayor, that’s a good starting point. Unfortunately, in the current proposal, it is also the ending point.

A mayor can be part-time with limited responsibility and cost, or full-time with commensurate remuneration. Let’s not try to have a little of each.

The charter review commission was terrific. Lots of good people and a great chair. But in this former mayor’s opinion, they struck out. Before we create a camel (a horse designed by a committee), let’s try for a thoroughbred and get it right.

We don’t need this proposal and we certainly don’t need ranked choice voting.

Linda Abromson
Portland

 

It was just a few short weeks ago Press Herald columnist Nemitz clumsily suggested independent Eliot Cutler step down to aid Democrat Libby Mitchell in the governor’s race. Recent reports amply demonstrate that Nemitz got it backwards.

An article in the Press Herald on Sept. 17 about poverty indicated that Maine was faring better than the nation. Talk about putting lipstick on a pig. The real horror of the article was its assertion that Maine had a lower median income before the great recession than all the other New England states and the nation as a whole after the recession.

The article coupled with the Forbes study naming Maine the worst state for business and a career shows just what has happened in our state over the past 40 years — nothing.

As an instructor in the community college system, when articles such as these come out they become discussion questions for the students in my classes. When asked what the article meant to them, my students overwhelmingly answered that they would have to leave Maine to get a good paying position.

When asked what being 50th meant, they overwhelmingly said they would have to leave Maine just to get a job. If the status quo continues, Maine will not just be a gray state, we will be on life support.

Mitchell and her colleagues just don’t get it. Maine’s young people don’t just need a job, they need opportunity. The opportunity to have meaningful careers where they can move up, grow and achieve right here in Maine. We need more than just small business. We need small business, medium-sized business and big business. If we want our young people to stay in Maine, the status quo has got to go. I’m voting for Eliot Cutler.

Jack Buckley
Durham

 

In Paul LePage, we finally have a candidate who truly understands the “little people” and how hard it is to survive here in Maine. After more than 30 years of steady decline in our education, values and economy, we now have a chance of turning things around.

LePage is not polished. His youth was spent just staying alive, but he has survived and succeeded despite adversities. He pretends to be nothing but what he is: strong, principled, hard-working, smart. Not unlike many of us who have had to fight for all we have.

He is the only non-politician with a real chance of winning, and will stand up for our rights after he does. We deserve Paul LePage and his plans for Maine’s brighter future.

Herbert Bates
Palmyra

 

The purpose of this letter is to urge my fellow Democrats, as well as moderate Republicans, to vote for Eliot Cutler for governor rather than their respective party candidates.

I had originally intended to cite all the reasons why I believe Mr. Cutler is the best choice for the State of Maine, but the Main Sunday Telegram’s endorsement this past weekend explained the situation perfectly.

But to ensure Mr. Cutler’s success, many voters (Democrats especially) must be willing to move beyond party loyalty and vote for the independent candidate. That is what I plan to do on Nov. 2.

Faith M. Towle
Raymond

 

I was surprised and disappointed with the newspaper’s endorsement choices, particularly in the congressional races.

Ironically, in the same edition, you published former Sen. George Mitchell’s observations about upheaval during troubling economic times.

If members of the editorial board had listened to him before voting, maybe the Press Herald would be standing taller now.

Instead, by endorsing Dean Scontras in the 1st Congressional District you demonstrate virtual amnesia about his complete focus on an opportunistic social agenda last time around. His economic platitudes passed off as thoughtful positions have you fooled into believing that he has magically acquired depth and sincerity putting, him in the same league with Rep. Chellie Pingree. Please do your homework next time.

In the 2nd District, we have one of only a handful of congressmen nationwide who has experience as a real worker, and expertise in veterans’ affairs. To advise readers to throw Rep. Mike Michaud into the ash heap is a shocker. The GOP nominee can recite the canned talking points of the far right, but without insight, wisdom, or meaningful experience.

Maine is a poor state with limited population. However, we’ve had a uniformly excellent and respected congressional delegation. These days that’s a difference maker, as our senators have repeatedly demonstrated. If Maine takes your advice, we’ll be just another state whose voters were tricked into giving that up.

Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins deserve better working partners then you would have us give them. Both Pingree and Michaud merit re-election.

Bill Fogel
Portland

 

The time is now for all the citizens of Maine to come together instead of participating in party division.

Many of our neighbors are out of work, with no hope of finding a new job because there are none.

Our education system has failed us despite all the resources it has been given. Yet people think that some candidates running for governor would decimate that very system by reducing costs. The system needs to be more effective and to be streamlined.

The economy is dismal. With the huge deficit facing the state, most assuredly our taxes will go up.

We need someone who can clearly lead this state out of our dismal economy and provide good permanent jobs. Giving stimulus money for construction jobs is all well and good, but those jobs are not permanent jobs and they only target a specific group. What about the rest of the people of Maine?

The state owes money it has never paid. Hospitals and health care providers are not getting paid. This debt is mounting.

So let’s look at the issues we are facing and elect someone who has the ability to cut taxes, balance the state budget, help small businesses, and attract new businesses to Maine that will create the jobs that the people of Maine desperately need.

Vote Paul LePage, a kind, compassionate, conservative leader.

Donna Madison
Portland

 

Several years ago the people of Maine were asked to vote for a casino in Sanford. I voted no. I did not want a casino in my metaphorical backyard. I am voting no again. I could not stomach a casino in my backyard, and I wouldn’t want Oxford County residents to have it in their backyard.

So, for everyone in southern Maine that voted no several years ago because you did not want a casino in your backyard, why would you vote yes and put it in Oxford County? Just a question for everyone to think about.

Kay Ouellette
Wells

 

Your endorsement of Eliot Cutler for governor comes as no great surprise, but I view it with an uneasy feeling of impending disaster.

I find no fault with your rationale in making the independent candidate your choice, but am apprehensive of the repercussions it will bring to the outcome of the election.

There is no question in my mind that Cutler is indeed qualified for the office of governor and possesses an impressive resume.

But given the mood of the country this election year and the inroads made in the Republican Party by extreme elements of the tea party movement, your support of Cutler will not produce the desired result.

Your endorsement undoubtedly can only serve to influence the ballots of enough undecided voters who were likely to favor Libby Mitchell, thus allowing Paul LePage, not Cutler or Mitchell, to prevail.

We would then have as our state leader a man who, as the editorial board states, “gives us pause about his decision-making. A governor can’t make snap decisions, or play loose with facts or rhetoric. LePage has done too much of both during his campaign, and it’s damaged his credibility.”

Yes, Eliot Cutler would make a far better governor than LePage.

The Maine Sunday Telegram editorial staff may well have acted in good faith, but if I am proven correct in my conjecture, they will have done the state a profound disservice.

Sam Kamin
Cumberland

 

I voted for Jimmy Carter in 1980 and have proudly voted Democratic in every election since then except for one, when I voted to re-elect Angus King as governor. In short, I am the party’s base.

Yet today I find myself disgusted with my own political party. The mailings I have received over the last two days stating, essentially, that Eliot Cutler is running for governor so that he can send jobs to China is a tactic borrowed directly from Karl Rove’s rather repulsive handbook. These xenophobic mailings are offensive to everyone.

This is politics at its most horrific, and I had thought the Maine Democratic Party was much better than this. Do they really think that Eliot Cutler is running for governor so that he can send jobs to China?

I cannot support anyone who stoops to these tactics — no party, and no individual. If this is the politics of Libby Mitchell — if she was aware of these mailings and did nothing to stop them — she does not deserve her party’s nomination.

On each election day, I will continue to vote my conscience. But I find myself ashamed of the Maine Democratic Party, which has completely lost my support.

Tim Brooks
Portland

 

I am voting for Libby Mitchell, and for good reason. She stands out in a rough and tumble world. I know this because I have served in the Maine Legislature for six years and owned both for-profit and non-profit small businesses.

In these past six years I have learned who in the State House listens to find solutions and who does not. I have learned who appears there only to represent their special interest and who is dedicated to broader service, and has the experience to make change happen.

Too frequently in Augusta, one’s conversation with another consists of someone waiting for you to take a breath so they can interrupt and start talking. Libby actually listens. I have seen her moved by intelligent argument and seen her move others as well.

The institutions represented in the halls of the State House — government, the private sector, non-profits — all resist change. Some in the Legislature, as well, are there to resist change, or protect their narrow self interest. Others represent finding solutions to move Maine forward.

Mitchell is about creating change to move Maine forward. I can work with her. She stands out.

Rep. David Webster
D-Freeport