The Tipping Point Blog Archive 2009
There’s a bigger threat to Maine than even the current state of the economy and the job market. Even if the economy improves quickly, Maine’s slow population growth and aging demographics portend a future of increased costs of social services and a declining workforce to pay for them. Unless all the old folks to move out (I hear Florida is nice), we'll likely need more immigrants.
State Senator Justin Alfond recently submitted a bill that could help.
Joseph Pulitzer once said that a newspaper should have no friends. Maine's papers seem to be doing a great job of fulfilling that dictum lately.
Daily newspapers are the prism through which we view our politics, and for decades have been the source of the public's political institutional memory and the arbiter of what's important in state politics and policy. That may not last much longer.
An article in the Boston Globe recently explained that "It's early, of course — ridiculously early — for anyone except potential candidates to be thinking about the next presidential race." The writer then went on to discuss why Mitt Romney may have the best chance among the 2012 Republican presidential hopefuls.
If you give Matt Jacobson the job of governor, he'll work to get you a job as a cruise ship captain, or maybe a wind energy technician or a railroad conductor. That's the message I got from digesting a host of interviews with Maine's first Republican gubernatorial hopeful after he announced the formation of an exploratory committee last week.
President Obama, in his speech before a joint session of Congress on Tuesday, argued that it isn't necessarily the amount of money that government spends that matters, more the way in which we spend it. "We have lived through an era where too often, short-term gains were prized over long-term prosperity; where we failed to look beyond the next payment, the next quarter, or the next election," explained Obama.
In a show of Republican infighting not seen since last week's column, prominent members of the Maine GOP have begun to call for the resignation of state party treasurer Philip Roy, who was reelected to his post last month.
According to the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, a think tank promoting local control and community building, Maine is one of 39 states that provides some preference to bids for government contracts from in-state companies. Specifically, in the case of tie bids between a Maine company and an out-of-state one, the former bid is given preference.
Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins hold a huge amount of power this week as they mull Obama's economic recovery package. National groups are buying ads to try to influence their vote, local groups are working to create grassroots pressure and President Obama has turned the leftovers from his election campaign into an organization to support his policy. They'll be holding house meetings
President Obama's (I still love saying that) victory in first the primaries and then the general election came on the shoulders of a dedicated base of supporters that organized themselves through powerful social networking utilities. Politicians at every level have recognized the strength of these online communities and are seeking to harness them for their own political ends.
Two Maine state representatives have
With the announcement of the equal marriage legislation last week came a flood of questions about the timing of the bill. Some of them were posed by opponents of the measure who wouldn't be happy with the proposal being put forward at any time, but others were legitimate concerns about the strategic details of bringing forward a bill this session. In my opinion, both the timing and the strategy are sound.