Monday, May 24, 2010

Otten on Maine GOP platform and other things

Maine Republican gubernatorial candidate Les Otten held a Live Chat with readers of the Maine Today Media papers this afternoon.

Two questioners asked Otten if he supported the Maine GOP's new Tea Party-style platform. (A week after the platform passed, Otten told the AP he hadn't had time to study the three-page document.)

Here's Otten's non-answer: "I did [have time to study it] and I have and while I do not agree with everything in the platform, it is still my studied position that the things that are most important to Mainers - creating jobs, decreasing taxes and downsizing state government - is compatible with what I want to do.

Uh, and your "studied position" on the platform is what, exactly? Are those things "most important to Mainers" compatible with the new platform, which would seal the border between Maine and New Brunswick and concentrate on Austrian School economics, among other things?

Another asked, "Do you support casinos? Baldacci wants one."

Otten: "I support casinos on a statewide basis with decisions made by local communities. Further, ownership needs to be in Maine, management needs to be in Maine and Maine needs to properly tax these establishments for their benefit. Further, last time I was in Bangor I thought Governor Baldacci had his casino.

He also had an interesting observation about Lubec, Maine (where voters are considering closing their high school) and Campobello Island, New Brunswick (right next to Lubec, but isolated from the rest of Canada.)

Otten: "I think the current consolidation scheme is a one-shoe fits all law or mandate. What works in York and Cumberland Counties clearly does not work in Aroostook and Washington Counties. A great example where we are missing the boat is in Washington County where Lubec, on the American side and Campobello, on the Canadian side are barely 5 minutes apart yet our consolidation policies dont' permit the creation of an international school that would benefit both communities."

That's an intriguing idea that's new to me, at least. Might look into that one when I'm in the area next long as nobody has sealed the border.

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