Maine's governor prides himself on being blunt
And boy, is he ever
Maine’s governor prides himself on being blunt. And boy, is he ever.
On Tuesday, Republican Gov. Paul LePage said Maine should bring back the guillotine to execute drug traffickers.
But that’s just the most recent example. Behold, the governor’s most eyebrow-raising quotes:
1. Bring the guillotine back
“What I think we ought to do is bring the guillotine back. We could have public executions,” he said, lamenting to right-wing radio station WVOM on Tuesday about how often drug traffickers get away with their crimes.
2. Guys by the name D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty
“The traffickers … these are guys by the name D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty. These type of guys that come from Connecticut, New York. They come up here, they sell their heroin, then they go back home. Incidentally, half the time they impregnate a young, white girl before they leave, which is the real sad thing because then we have another issue we gotta deal with down the road,” he said on January 6, during one of his regular town hall meetings.
3. Giving it to the people
“Sen. Jackson claims to be for the people, but he’s the first one to give it to the people without providing Vaseline,” LePage said of State Sen. Troy Jackson, a Democrat, in 2014, according to WMTW.
4. “Tell them to kiss my butt.”
This one got him in trouble in 2011, according to the Bangor Daily News.
LePage was talking about the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People leaders and others who criticized him for turning down their invitation to attend ceremonies honoring Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.
5. Little beards
“If you take a plastic bottle and put it in the microwave and you heat it up, it gives off a chemical similar to estrogen. And so the worst case is some women might have little beards,” he joked of the effects of bisphenol A (BPA) in 2011.
This came up during one of LePage’s first big initiatives as governor, a move to weaken his state’s environmental laws. For example, Maine didn’t allow plastic baby bottles to be manufactured with BPA, because it’s toxic. LePage tried to reverse that. (He eventually failed.)
6. Pay attention to undocumented immigrants
“I have been trying to get the President to pay attention to illegals in our country … because there is a spike in hepatitis C, tuberculosis, HIV, and it is going on deaf ears,” LePage said in 2014, according to the Portland Press Herald.
The governor has repeatedly expressed his unfounded fear that undocumented immigrants are riddled with diseases.
7. Global warming
“Everybody looks at the negative effects of global warming, but with the ice melting, the Northern Passage has opened up,” LePage said in 2013, according to the Bangor Daily News, offering up a reason to be optimistic about melting polar ice caps – because it’s better for the shipping business.
8. “Go to hell”
“As your governor, you’re going to be seeing a lot of me on the front page, saying, ‘Gov. LePage tells Obama to go to hell,’ ” LePage said, while campaigning in 2010.
9. IRS as Gestapo?
In a 2012 interview with Vermont alternative weekly Seven Days, LePage said, “What I am trying to say is the Holocaust was a horrific crime against humanity and, frankly, I would never want to see that repeated. Maybe the IRS is not quite as bad – yet.”
10. On newspapers
“I want to find the Press Herald building and blow it up,” LePage once said, citing the state’s largest paper. At the time, LePage was at the controls of an F-35 Lightning II flight simulator at an engine-building plant.
In 2012, he said, “Reading newspapers in the state of Maine is like paying somebody to tell you lies.”
And other instances, LePage has joked about gunning down a newspaper cartoonist, punching a radio reporter and said, “The worst part of my life is newspapers are still alive.”