Lawmakers have split reaction to State of the State address
AUGUSTA (WGME) – Governor Paul LePage drew much more applause from republicans than democrats during his final State of the State speech Tuesday night.
Governor LePage made it very clear this year lawmakers made progress, but says there was so much more that could've and should've been accomplished here in the state of Maine.
Speaker of the House Sara Gideon and democrat lawmakers agree. They say a lot of what they heard Tuesday night and what they have seen over LePage’s seven years is reparative.
Gideon says his address showed weak leadership.
Both democrats and republicans were upset there was no mention of the opioid crisis, with less than a year left in Maine, they say they'd hoped the governor would have a plan.
"What I hoped for tonight was a real vision for the future, I hope he would address all of the issues in front of us as well,” Gideon said. “As recognizing what is going right and what we can build for the future, I felt there was a lot of pointing fingers and lame blame as the governor is often quick to do."
Republicans seemed to be very pleased with LePage's address, standing and cheering for pretty much every topic he touched upon.
They say it was a good wrap up of the hard work that's been done over the last seven years and they believe he will continue to work up until inauguration day.
They say lepage was fair with what he discussed.
"I think he talked about paying off the hospitals, reducing the statist gap, doing the income tax cuts, putting more money into the rainy day fund and those are the kinds of accomplishments I think he really cares about, but I think for example, the democrats simply chose not to recognize the election of Paul LePage in 2010 and in 2014 and sort of fought him tooth and nail the whole way," House Minority Leader Kenneth Fredette said.