Maine governor meets lawmaker to apologize for obscene rant
Wed., Aug. 31, 2016
AUGUSTA, Maine – Republican Gov. Paul LePage met Wednesday with a Democratic lawmaker to apologize for leaving an obscene rant on his voicemail and for making a comment about aiming a gun between his eyes.
Rep. Drew Gattine said after the face-to-face meeting that despite the apology, he thinks LePage should no longer serve as governor.
On Aug. 25, LePage left a foul-mouthed voicemail message for Gattine that said in part, “I am after you,” and then he told reporters he wished he could go back in time and challenge Gattine to a duel and point a gun “right between his eyes.”
LePage said he was angry because he believed Gattine had called him a racist, something Gattine has repeatedly denied.
The governor initially stood by his statements, saying they were warranted because Gattine had called him “the absolute worst, most vile thing.” But on Tuesday he apologized, saying his behavior was “unacceptable.”
The governor has been accused of saying racially insensitive things before, most recently Aug. 24 at a town hall in North Berwick. He said he keeps photos of drug dealers arrested in the state in a binder and said it shows 90 percent of them “are black and Hispanic people from Waterbury, Connecticut; the Bronx; and Brooklyn.”
Previously, the governor has complained about out-of-state drug dealers named “D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty” impregnating young white girls and blamed a rise in infectious diseases on immigrants without providing data.
LePage has blamed liberals for inserting race into his comments and distorting his meaning.
On Tuesday, House Republicans gathered in Augusta to figure out potential punishments for LePage over his latest crisis, while about 1,000 people rallied near the Blaine House to call for him to quit.
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