After letting Democrats walk all over them during the regular session that adjourned in June, Republicans in the Maine Legislature seemed to have finally found their voice, and some spine.

Republicans did taxpayers a favor during late August’s special legislative session by rejecting three of four Democrat spending proposals, saving the state $58 million. They and Democrats passed a transportation bond worth $105 million, which goes to voters in November.

That Republicans were able to defeat anything is a minor miracle, seeing how Democrats hold solid majorities in both the House and Senate, not to mention the Blaine House. Of course, Republicans were quickly criticized by Gov. Janet Mills, who called the special session.

“The people are going to know who decided not to let the people decide in November to support the National Guard and the crumbling buildings and facilities that they are trying to work in,” Mills said. “The people will know who voted not to let the people decide to support high-speed internet in rural Maine.”

You’re right, Gov. Janet, the voters know exactly who to blame, and it’s not the GOP.

Voters understand why Republicans balked. They know Republicans are worried that you and your fellow Democrats have increased the state budget by more than $800 million, or about 11%. They’re worried about the rosy economic forecasts that the new state budget is based on, with no wiggle room in case of a recession.

Voters understand Republicans are watching the purse strings and opting for fiscal prudence, which takes some spine in an era of easy money brought on by low interest rates. Voters also praise Republicans for standing up for the taxpayer while surrounded by Augusta politicians eager to fulfill bureaucrats’ and special interests’ wish lists.

Voters also know you and legislative Democrats had a chance to address these so-called infrastructure “needs” during the regular session, but were too busy fighting culture wars instead. You and your fellow Democrats were too busy passing taxpayer-funded abortion and physician-assisted suicide to be bothered with such mundane items as the National Guard’s buildings or rural high-speed internet.

Yes, voters know what’s going on, Gov. Janet. They’re proud to witness a resurgent Republican Party fending off the Democrat tax-and-spend agenda. They’re proud to see them speaking truth to Democrat power.

I especially liked how Assistant House Minority Leader Trey Stewart, R-Presque Isle, defended his party’s special session votes.

“Republicans did not have enough votes (during the regular session) to stop Democrats from spending 99.995% of all available state monies, including the budget surplus, and protecting small businesses, workers and taxpayers from onerous new regulations,” Stewart stated following the special session. “Today we did have the votes to stop them from adding to their irresponsible spending spree. Transportation infrastructure has to become a core priority when we budget, not a last-minute borrowing request after Democrats spend all the money.”

State Rep. Billy Bob Faulkingham, R-Winter Harbor, piled on the common sense: “To spend every penny of available money now … and then ask to borrow hundreds of millions of dollars on top of it is reckless and irresponsible.”

For the first time since Gov. Paul LePage left office, Maine Republicans are finding their mojo. Yes, they passed along a $105 million transportation bond to voters in November, but they foiled Democrats’ three additional proposals. And, when you’re fighting against a Goliath like the Maine Democrat Party, three out of four ain’t bad.

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