Eliot Cutler’s “campaign is desperately flailing for attention,” declares Dan Demeritt (“Cutler must focus on foreign policy and how his plans will best serve Mainers,” Jan. 19).

The column begins with sports analogies, a significantly different domain from governance. But it does catch the reader’s attention. However, let’s look at one example of Cutler’s behavior and assess it for flailing.

An article in this edition of the Telegram describes how the “DHHS has lost track of millions it overpaid.”

Using this as the context for discussing Cutler’s “flailing,” Cutler called for the firing of the governor over the governor’s hiring consultant Gary Alexander to review MaineCare and Alexander’s initial report.

Please note: The article on the DHHS reports that the state Office of the Controller recently reviewed Medicaid reimbursements and found significant problems. Question: Why is a million-dollar study needed when it’s clear that there are mechanisms in place that can identify issues that Alexander will study?

Cutler had a choice regarding the issue: Say nothing or direct the public’s attention to the Alexander study.


Saying nothing would be interesting. It would show that Cutler doesn’t care about the expenditure of about a million dollars of taxpayer money on a study that, in essence, is not objective but rather clones the governor’s stance.

A politician ignoring this event might be seen as one who is out of touch or doesn’t consider it worth comment. I believe that actions from the governor’s office should be noted by anyone interested in sitting in that office.

So, saying nothing versus saying something are two political paths, but these paths lead to dramatically different understanding by the public.

As the public, I would rather hear what any candidate has to say, even if I disagree with it, than not know where that candidate stands on the issue.

It’s not flailing, Mr. Demeritt; it’s a reasonable political path.

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