"I just wanted you to know I'm listening in and will check back once in a while so I can answer any questions which might arise.
If I could comment on a couple of points, I would like to say that I think looking closely at my experience as a lobbyist is very understandable. I was not a hired gun in the sense that I would represent anyone and am proud of the businesses and nonprofits which I served. But the question always follows, that now that I serve the public as a whole am I able to to seperate myself from this past work. I believe my record in the Maine House demonstrates that. I hope you all come to the same conclusion.
I don't know if you know this but Governor King once worked as a lobbyist before the Maine legislature. He lobbied for environmental groups. He also worked on the inside of government for a brief period as did I. His work was for the US Senate, mine for the Maine Senate. I think the fact the King saw the world as an outsider but had experience as an insider made him effective. I hope my similar experience will serve me as well.
Finally, mention is made of the fact that the state got into financial problems in King's second term and that things have improved under Gov. Baldacci. I agree with the former and strongly disagree with the latter. In King's defense, he was the first Governor elected after the Maine government shut down and as such was understandably worried about pushing back too hard on a legislature which wanted to spend more. Having observed this first hand, I have made clear that when I am elected, there will be no budgets passed by a simple majority and I will veto any budget which isn't fiscally responible.
It is very important to avoid any shut down of government services but it is even more important to fashion a government which we can afford which is managed soundly. "
8:41 AM, July 20, 2006
Thank you, Barbara. We look forward to hearing more from you in the future.Barbara's website has been updated here, and I see she'll be in my area on Wednesday. Hopefully I'll be able to attend one of the stops on her coffee tour, and better yet maybe get a chance to ask her where she stands on independent issues like election reform. And she must be doing something right, as I see on the website that the Governor's staff felt it important to "take issue" with her current campaign ad.
Maine Merrill legislature Blaine House governor women politics reform lobbyist Angus King Baldacci veto budget campaign