Just last week, Gov. Paul LePage (R), Maine’s embattled and often-buffoonish chief executive, sounded like he was ready to pack up and go home. Reflecting on whether he’d seek a second term, the far-right governor said, “I don’t have any more priorities…. Cornwallis won most of the battles but he lost the war; that’s how I feel.”
Cornwallis, by the way, was the British general who fought Americans during the Revolutionary War. As a rule, U.S. politicians don’t compare themselves to him.
In fact, LePage made it sound as if he doesn’t even care for Maine that much. After the governor hinted he might be interested in a congressional campaign, LePage told reporters, “[I]t can’t be any worse in Washington than it is here.”
Apparently, however, the governor has had a change of heart. LePage, whom many Maine voters consider an embarrassment to their state, has decided he wants another four years.
Republican Gov. Paul LePage announced Tuesday he would seek a second term in office during a private fundraising event in Kennebunk, according to a state senator who attended.
Sen. Andre Cushing, R-Hampden, said LePage confirmed he was running during the event hosted by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. Cushing said the announcement came in front of a group of about 100 people but LePage was unmistakably clear that he would seek a second term in the Blaine House.
There are no exact quotes from the event because LePage refused to allow news organizations to report from the fundraiser. We also don’t know what Jeb Bush said in support of LePage, or why the former Florida governor would appear alongside LePage so soon after his “give it to the people without providing Vaseline” controversy.
Maine elected the governor in 2010 with just 38% of the vote, as Democratic and independent candidates split the state’s mainstream. It is not yet clear if another three-way contest will keep LePage in office.