A recent op-ed by Maine Senate Assistant Minority Leader Jeff Timberlake, made two things perfectly clear.

First, he knows little about public health and emergency command response. He was critical of House Speaker Sara Gideon’s refusal to convene the Legislature, regardless of Maine constitutional powers that are bestowed to the State’s Executive during a crisis.

Executive powers are intended to centralize decision-making during crises. This is consistent with all incident command scenarios. In the case of public health, he neglects to share the success of our state’s response to the virus. Maine is now in a handful of states that have successfully bent the curve, despite the leadership failures of the Federal Administration and its feeble response to the pandemic. These successes are because decisions were centralized and were based on epidemiological principles, not political ideology. Honestly, Zoom meetings and events are hardly a distraction to Speaker Gideon’s legislative responsibilities. Incidentally, the social media feeds are flooded with Susan Collins’ photo-ops.

It also became evident that his concern for Mainers’ health and welfare is not the motive for his editorial. While cases surge in ALL states that either never took precautions, or opened prematurely, he disregards the efforts of Maine citizens, the governor and our State’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

He is looking for a political stage to counter and detract from the state’s remarkable achievements, while making a sycophantic plug for Sen. Collins. The last thing we need during this pandemic is for Mr. Timberlake to peddle his political discord.

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