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Posted at 2:50 PM ET, 01/14/2011

Governor declines MLK day event invite, tells critics: 'Kiss my butt' (updated)

By Emi Kolawole

Updated 3:47 p.m.:

Governor Paul LePage (R-Maine) is telling critics to "kiss my butt" over his decision not to attend the state NAACP's annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebrations this weekend.

LePage, who adopted a son from Jamaica, declined invitations to attend a dinner in Portland on Sunday night and a breakfast in Orono on Monday because of prior commitments. "I'm not gonna' be held hostage by any special interest. And if they want, they can look at my family pictures. My son happens to be black. .. The fact of the matter is, there [are] only so many hours in the day, so many hours in the week and so much that you can do."

The NAACP's state director said the group felt it was being neglected by the new governor, a Republican elected in November with tea party support.

When asked by a reporter Friday to respond, LePage said: "Tell them to kiss my butt."

NAACP president and CEO Benjamin Jealous released a statement in response to LePage's remarks:

"Governor Le Page's decision to inflame racial tension on the eve of the King holiday denigrates his office. His words are a reminder of the worst aspects of Maine's history and out of touch with our nation's deep yearning for increased civility and racial healing."

The release went on to note that Jealous's family had long-running ties to the state: "His father is from Maine and his family has been in New England since 1636."

LePage made news last fall on the campaign trail when he told a group of fishermen that if he were elected, "you're going to be seeing a lot of me on the front page, saying 'Governor LePage tells Obama to go to hell.'"

(source: Associated Press)

By Emi Kolawole  | January 14, 2011; 2:50 PM ET
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Comments

First of all, this man is a man of office and should set an example of our country’s leaders. His comment is bullyish and his twice mentioning his “black” son seems a bit odd. It doesn’t appear the NAACP referred to him as being racist just if he had an agenda. His comments may be exposing exactly what he is trying to hide. Or he is just a spotlight seeker and wants his 15 minutes of fame. Well, Governor, this isn’t a reality show.

And for those of you that keep insisting the NAACP is racist. Please do some research...lest you make all of us white people look like uneducated rednecks. The NAACP was found one hundred years ago...one hundred and 2 as a matter of fact. It was instituted by mainly white people...like black people could have started their own organization in the very early 1900's...mainly because the treatment of "black" children was close to heinous. The white majority oppressed these children and were not allowing them equal access to equal education...which obviously would keep "them" in "their" place. It was decent white folks who felt this was an injustice to do to any child and began this organization. Yes, if you are white and you need help...you are being discriminated against..you may call the NAACP. Get over the name...it used to be something like the National Negro Foundation or something. The name itself is born of racism, but did you ever think they didn't change it so people would remember what can happen when a government allows cultural genocide?

Posted by: karianez | January 17, 2011 10:25 PM | Report abuse

Gov LePage did attend an MLK event, in Waterville, where as mayor he routinely attended the annual breakfast sponsored by the NAACP. After he rebuked the NAACP for being a special interest group, he met with Right to Life, another special interest group, and he has plans to meet with the other special interest groups who all advocate for the interests of specific groups.

After shouting (during the campaign) that his Florida resident family (wife & children) were off limits for questions or interviews, he now invited people to talk to his son, a young man from Jamaica, who is not his son legally, and for whom he is paying education - in Florida, where all his children received their higher education because as Florida residents, they receive cheap education. Though his wife owns property in both Maine and FLorida, she claims Florida residency, but has applied for reduced property tax status in both states claiming residency in both states. Gov LePage has never owned property in Maine and has never paid Maine property taxes, though he has always lived in Maine.

Gov LePage made his first act as governor, a piece of executive legislation that encourages public officials to seek out non-US citizens and demand proof of their immigration status. He stated during his campaign that he personally will buy these people a bus ticket out of state to prevent them from claiming welfare from Maine. His non-US citizen non-son does not have to worry about being questioned, as he does not live in this state.

Gov LePage blasted the Democrats in the previous administration for overspending. He also insists that Maine needs to find jobs for its youth. He hired a fine young woman to be his press secretary, for $50,000, twice the salary of the previous administration's press secretary. This young woman, a former Florida resident, is his daughter.

Posted by: ktvanw | January 17, 2011 9:25 PM | Report abuse

Gov. Paul LePage has proven that he is pathetic. Without the Rev. Martin Luther King and the NAACP, racial segregation would still be the law in many states.

Posted by: lynnlm | January 17, 2011 6:56 PM | Report abuse

Gov. Paul LePage has proven that he is pathetic. Without the Rev. Martin Luther King and the NAACP, racial segregation would still be the law in many states.

Posted by: lynnlm | January 17, 2011 6:56 PM | Report abuse

Every person who believes the Governor was correct must certainly believe he is anti-semitic. If the Naacp is a "Special Interest Group" so is "the Jewish Defense League" The Asian-American Groups the Native American Groups and the Hispanic Groups. It means he is telling the all to "kiss his butt". If you treat one group differently from another, it is prejudicial. Having a black son does not exempt him, there were Germans who had Jewish friends, yet they stood by while Hitler justified his hate. There is never an excuse or justification for hate Mr. LaPage

Posted by: tmg3 | January 16, 2011 8:14 PM | Report abuse

I smell a half-term governor. Woops! He'll stay because he needs state-supported health care.

Posted by: citizen625 | January 16, 2011 5:20 PM | Report abuse


He's a sensitive, loving, Christian, practicing his personal principles of conservative political thuggery.

How do we let these examples of poor character rise to the top of leadership? How does it happen? I fear that he is merely the figurehead of a strong and deep anti-intellectual attitude, one of supreme selfishness, seeking to abuse others, as they did in Iraq, infused with the need for self-righteous violence.

It is the face of American Conservatism, and it is not pretty.

Posted by: gkam | January 16, 2011 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Actually, WaPo only told one side of the story - a usual failing of the WaPo.

The NAACP is the biggest racist in the country. Except for Obama. We need a NAAWP. Bet someone would say that is unconstitutional.

The MAACP should help advance their own people, as other posters have suggested, instead of finding ways to spew hatred on the whites. Afterall, where would the NAACP be without the whites who contribute through taxes to the "welfare" of their members? The more they stir up the Blacks, the more disgrace the NAACP brings on itself.

Posted by: annnort | January 16, 2011 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Kind of hard to have racial tensions in a state where 99% of the population is white. Even the head of the NAACP in Maine has blue eyes...we probably need the NAACEP here more than the NAACP - The national association for the advancement of colored eyed people because us brown eyed people need more representation. I am really tired of being surrounded by tall, blonde, blue eyed people who look down on me - literally. I just want to know who was the last person who told you to "kiss my butt" - was it a friend? relative? Have you ever said this to someone else and who? I think we need to get out the potato guns and shoot them into the lily white snows of Maine.

Posted by: fromaway222 | January 15, 2011 7:41 PM | Report abuse

Alright, Governor! And leave it to the NAACP to play the race card. They sure have had plenty of practice.

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | January 15, 2011 7:20 PM | Report abuse

The Governor got elected with the same type of message so it seems it's accepted. Many look to defend Sarah as she didn't incite any violence in her speeches for two years, she is much like a President we need today. This chaos in America most me Obama's fault for being President. Once we remove the Democracy then we can finally go back to the Confederate days when people knew their place and stayed in it. Having a black child doesn't mean your not racist it's the old way during the Civil Rights when whites didn't want people to know they were racist so they said look I have a black friend. Defending the comments of the Governor just prove how the bottom feeders are getting elected.

Posted by: qqbDEyZW | January 15, 2011 6:17 PM | Report abuse

I believe the governor is upset with all the BS that's going on. All the political correctness that people require. Everybody seems to have an adjenda and if one does not participate they are castigated. A terrible tragedy happened in Arizona and it is blamed on Palin. If that makes sense then I feel sorry for you, wake up America.

Posted by: lmurphy2 | January 15, 2011 5:39 PM | Report abuse

Ah, it's that new civility in politics.

The governor can decline the NAACP invitation and state his philosophical reasons without using the aggressive, rude language. This is exactly what's meant by the coarsening of political discourse. Let's change it.

Posted by: cassandra9 | January 15, 2011 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Stay classy, there. Makes your mama proud, doesn't it to offer the least civil, mature response to what's part of the official duties of a governor.

Posted by: chicago11 | January 15, 2011 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Stay classy, there. Makes your mama proud, doesn't it to offer the least civil, mature response to what's part of the official duties of a governor.

Posted by: chicago11 | January 15, 2011 3:29 PM | Report abuse

How horrible that the governor of my state sees fit to act in such a juvenile way. How old is this guy and didn't anyone teach him any manners? I don't care what he personally thinks of the NAACP, if he didn't see fit to assume some of the more diplomatic duties of a responsible leader, there are far, far better ways to say no. To those cheering him on - is this the kind of language and behavior you would find acceptable in your children? From your co-workers? From anyone? It's appalling, not to mention extremely embarrassing that we have such a man as our governor. I can't call him a leader, for he is no role model.

Posted by: ktvanw | January 15, 2011 1:56 PM | Report abuse

wheeljc wrote: "A bigger question: What has the NAACP done to move the Black community forward??"
=======================================
They helped us secure access to society at large that others had long denied our ancestors.

What have YOU done to move the Black community forward?

Posted by: carlaclaws | January 15, 2011 1:55 PM | Report abuse

No politician should have to genuflect to the NAACP or kiss the ring of the likes of Sharpton. Way to go, Governor.

Posted by: kitchendragon50 | January 14, 2011 11:28 PM
@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

Oh, that's good play the Al Sharpton/Jessie Jackson card. What has Al Sharpton got do do with this? Benjamin Jealous NAACP President and CEO released a statement regarding Governor LePages remarks. But whatever, we now know that this Governor is a rather divisive, intolerant person. Good luck Maine if the Governor doesn't feel your concerns are important to him.

Posted by: catmomtx | January 15, 2011 1:48 PM | Report abuse

One could ask the questions:

*What has the NAACP done to improve the high school drop out rates of Black youth?

*What has the NAACP done to reduce teenage pregnancies?

*What has the NAACP done to reduce violent Black on Black crime, and violent crime within the community?

*What has the NAACP done to coax the absent Black fathers to stand up to their personal responsibilities?

A bigger question: What has the NAACP done to move the Black community forward??

Posted by: wheeljc | January 15, 2011 12:12 PM
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

You know one could ask Sarah Palin or other White leaders or the religious right the same questions. But what would be better is that you investigate for yourself what the NAACP has done to deal with these issues.

Obviously you don't know what the NAACP has done on those issues but that doesn't mean that they are not trying to deal with them. But I would like to know what is it you expect them to do? How do you think that this group can cure all the ills of this country. You also act as if these problems are only problems in the African American community. Open up your eyes because these are America's problems, black, white, brown or otherwise.
######################################################################################
A bigger question: What has the NAACP done to move the Black community forward??

And I'm sorry but what have Republicans/conservatives/right wing/tea party people done to move this COUNTRY forward? Why lay all the responsibility on the NAACP.

Posted by: catmomtx | January 15, 2011 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Its about time someone told the racist in the NAACP to take a hike. The governor had a prior commitment, they should accept his explanation and move on.....instead they play the race card. As usual, it is the NAACP that inflaming racial tension and playing the Race Card. They have become a despicable group of thugs that attempt to blackmail politicans and businesses with their ire if these parties don't pay them lots of money and lip service. I'm glad the governor told them to go to Hell and others should if threatened by this group of thieves.

Posted by: Realist201 | January 15, 2011 12:34 PM
??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Excuse me realist, but did you read the article? It was in fact the Governor who inflamed the situation. When asked all he had to do was say he had prior commitments. Why would you vilify the NAACP for the Governor's comment and for them responding to a question?

I find it interesting that you vilify the NAACP and say they are using the race card, how so? By saying they feel the Governor was not responsive to them? Isn't he the Governor of ALL citizens of Maine? Shouldn't he be willing to engage with ALL citizens of the state? I mean it is one day honoring a great leader and for the Governor to say someone should kiss his butt is not very professional or helpful when trying to see to the needs of all it's citizens.

It is really funny how now some people in this country want to demonize the NAACP. It is clear from reading these comments and the comments on the various other boards, the NAACP is just as relevant now as they were when founded in 1909. I'm just curious as to why so many of you feel threatened by the NAACP?

Posted by: catmomtx | January 15, 2011 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Its about time someone told the racist in the NAACP to take a hike. The governor had a prior commitment, they should accept his explanation and move on.....instead they play the race card. As usual, it is the NAACP that inflaming racial tension and playing the Race Card. They have become a despicable group of thugs that attempt to blackmail politicans and businesses with their ire if these parties don't pay them lots of money and lip service. I'm glad the governor told them to go to Hell and others should if threatened by this group of thieves.

Posted by: Realist201 | January 15, 2011 12:34 PM | Report abuse

The NAACP will unfailingly endorse any Democrat candidate for office, so why should the Republicans waste their time trying to court their favor? Let the NAACP spew its antiquated, tired and totally irrelevant rhetoric. When's the last time the NAACP has offered anything constructive to the nation's political discourse?

Posted by: dumbfatsow | January 15, 2011 12:28 PM | Report abuse

The NAACP will unfailingly endorse any Democrat candidate for office, so why should the Republicans waste their time trying to court their favor? Let the NAACP spew its antiquated, tired and totally irrelevant rhetoric.

Posted by: dumbfatsow | January 15, 2011 12:26 PM | Report abuse

While the Governor of Maine could have perhaps been a bit more tactful, it is also about time for the NAACP to remove the chip from their shoulder.

The Governor of Maine has an adopted Black son, so they need to be careful about playing their race card on him. They might learn that when they look at their hand, they are holding the Joker!

Just feel that the NAACP has relegated itself into an organization in search of issues that -- through hook or crook -- garner resources to line the pockets of it self appointed leadership. Personally, hate to see the NAACP of today trample on the images of the leaders of the 60's and 70's -- leaders with real issues.

One could ask the questions:

*What has the NAACP done to improve the high school drop out rates of Black youth?

*What has the NAACP done to reduce teenage pregnancies?

*What has the NAACP done to reduce violent Black on Black crime, and violent crime within the community?

*What has the NAACP done to coax the absent Black fathers to stand up to their personal responsibilities?

A bigger question: What has the NAACP done to move the Black community forward??

Posted by: wheeljc | January 15, 2011 12:12 PM | Report abuse

This repug has found a way... to remain a racist in the open. Adopt a black kid.

Posted by: WmLaney | January 15, 2011 2:52 AM | Report abuse

No politician should have to genuflect to the NAACP or kiss the ring of the likes of Sharpton. Way to go, Governor.

Posted by: kitchendragon50 | January 14, 2011 11:28 PM | Report abuse

Way to go Gov!!! Who in their right mind would want to be involved with the race baiting poverty pimp bigots who try to brow beat others into submitting to their sleazy, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton brand of corruption. MLK was a symbol and a fine speaker. He was also a wife cheating sexual degenerate, a communist and thief. No one's perfect.

Posted by: carlbatey | January 14, 2011 11:14 PM | Report abuse

Kiss his butt? Kiss his butt?

Governer, the one under your clothes...

or

the one under your nose?

For an elected official, surely there's a better way of saying somethings. This particular "family values" way ain't to swift and it sure ain't civil.


***

Posted by: Evenfoolsarerightsometimes | January 14, 2011 11:04 PM | Report abuse

The NAACP is a racist organization.I would like to see more people refuse to pander to race peddlers.

Posted by: makaput | January 14, 2011 10:05 PM | Report abuse


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Posted by: itkonlyyou445 | January 14, 2011 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Who cares?

Posted by: moebius22 | January 14, 2011 9:14 PM | Report abuse

Kiss your butt, Governor?

No thanks.

Keep your pants on, please. I'm pretty sure your butt is not something I'd enjoy seeing, let alone kissing.

Posted by: weallenfsa | January 14, 2011 8:51 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps not a racist but still rude. Way to show kids how to graciously decline an invitation Gov!

Posted by: westghentwitch | January 14, 2011 8:18 PM | Report abuse

nothin' like pimping your black son. What a disgrace.

Posted by: kurthunt | January 14, 2011 8:12 PM | Report abuse

LePage only speaks for one third of the state as he was elected by only a third of the vote. The other two thirds have much better manners.Posted by: pnwmainah1
------

You got that right. Most of us didn't vote for the ignorant, arrogant POS. Oh, and he recently "appointed" his daughter, a recent biology graduate, to a $41K position in the gov. Biz as usual here in ME. The more things change, the more they stay the same. Even outside the Beltway, it's who you know/blow, not WHAT you know that gets the gig.

It's gonna be a long four years with this clown in office.

Posted by: mooncusser | January 14, 2011 6:58 PM | Report abuse

Every single time the NAACP does not have its way someone is accused of or insinuated to be a racist. Why anyone gives credence to this bunch is beyond me. It is time for them to stop acting racist but then if they stop pointing fingers and generally raising a stink there is no use for them is there? Is there one single action taken by the NAACP that benefits non blacks? Then my point is proven, you do not see a National White People Organization or a National Brown People Organization do ya? Maybe there is a National Yellow People Organization, I don't know. Why segregate themselves? The answer is easy, to start trouble much like the learned person above who takes the gov to task. I am all for him and anyone else who does not bow down so we can be PC, to be equal we have to be treated equal not as some subservient brow beaten half wit. Yes we know where he stands, on his own feet and asking no quarter because of his color or beliefs. I do not think he means "See I have a black child", I think he is saying I have adopted A child, how about you? All the NAACP adopts is an attitude of unforgiveness and educated words of hatred for any person not black.

Posted by: twoasperin | January 14, 2011 6:49 PM | Report abuse

NAACP should accept his challenge.

On TV. He presents his butt (a wide-angle lens may be necessary to cover both sides around the Great Divide), someone then kisses The Butt.

Posted by: kishorgala | January 14, 2011 6:39 PM | Report abuse

He was elected governor, he can pretty much go and do as he sees fit. If you don't like it, you can kiss his butt.

Posted by: jjlj | January 14, 2011 6:26 PM | Report abuse

if he hasn't the balls to say ass he is a waste of time.

Posted by: richard13423 | January 14, 2011 6:24 PM | Report abuse

It's just the "kiss my butt" comment -- it's the governor's laughter after he said it that discredits him. With a small African American population in Maine, he can get away with this kind of disrespect. But it astounds me how such a jerky person could ever get elected to public office, much less the governorship in New England. Pretty scary.

Then again, judging by some of the comments posted here, a good portion of the electorate is pretty scary too.

Posted by: dl49 | January 14, 2011 6:23 PM | Report abuse

if he hasn't the balls to say ass he is a waste of time.

Posted by: richard13423 | January 14, 2011 6:22 PM | Report abuse

He adopted Devon when he was a teenager in Jamaica and he can now be as rude as he wants to be to African Americans because he has the "non-racist" Tea Party Republicans behind him.

Posted by: FoundingMother | January 14, 2011 6:14 PM | Report abuse

Nice talk, governor. Nice example for our children. If I didn't have prior commitments, I'd volunteer to kick yours. My grandson has more sensitivity than you do. No wonder no one likes politicians.

Posted by: codyspen | January 14, 2011 6:11 PM | Report abuse

I have to assume this was not his initial response. I would also assume because of the overt anger in his response he felt like they were putting a gun to his head and he rightfully resented it. As a governor, because of constant pressure, you have to pick and choose which special interest you're going to bow down to and, in reality, I think there are about 6 black people in Maine so it was probably a wise choice from that perspective. If he was governor of one states with numerous cites of predominantly blacks he would go for his political life. Maine - not so much. He sound like he hates the job already.

Posted by: Bcamp55 | January 14, 2011 6:09 PM | Report abuse

While this is one side of the story.
I dont think this is all of it.

What was the NAACP ( a race biased association) telling him for him to give such a reply?!

Or do liberals think this is just how all right wing conservatives talk for no reason at all ?!

Posted by: jabberwolff | January 14, 2011 6:06 PM | Report abuse

This is very interesting, not only the article, but the responses. It is an issue that he declined, it is his actions and words after. I hope and assume that his initial decline of the invitation was one of respect and thoughtful decline. As we all know, one person cannot be ten places at once. I respect that he had previous plans. But to follow up with "Kiss My Butt?" As a public figure, it is not the best choice of words. Especially when you are chosen to represent others.

As an African American, I do find even more issue that he is justifying his right to decline with the fact that he has adopted a black son. That's great and admirable, but it is not a reason to decline events like this. It has always bothered me, and I'm sure other African Americans when someone says, "But I adopted a black child." Yes, we see that but what are you teaching them about who they are and the struggles they will face, that you will never understand? Adopting or knowing someone black does not exempt you from gaining knowledge or respecting the race, culture and rights of blacks.

No, I am not a member of the NAACP, but no where in that statement does it mention anyone being a racist. Many people become defensive when some calls them something they do not like but know they are. Regardless of the topic.

I am not a native New Englander, but I have been living here for over 5 years. Of all the places I've lived, this is the only place that continues to deny the level of racism still present. It is easier to respect someone who is true to their beliefs despite what they are, but you attempt to hide you, these things shine through.

I do hope LePage gets his wording correct. If we did not know where he stood before, we definitely know where he stands now.

Posted by: TrueTalk | January 14, 2011 6:05 PM | Report abuse

Right on, Mr. LePage. Show the race-baiters for what they are.

Posted by: moxyclod | January 14, 2011 6:02 PM | Report abuse


Really now, was "Tell them to kiss my butt" really necessary?

How about something like "Due to prior committments, I can't make it to your dinner."

So much for civility.

Of course being a Republican, that is considered civil discourse.

Posted by: alpacaman1 | January 14, 2011 5:57 PM | Report abuse

Stay classy, Maine.

Posted by: jonathansuperstructure | January 14, 2011 5:54 PM | Report abuse

I don't care if he refuses to attend a MLK event. And his reasons are his own. What I do care about is his total lack of respect for his State, his Country and its citizens. I don't care what State he represents, as a citizen of this county I expect and deserve better then that.

Posted by: mnm2 | January 14, 2011 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I don't care if he refuses to attend a MLK event. And his reasons are his own. What I do care about is his total lack of respect for his State, his Country and its citizens. I don't care what State he represents, as a citizen of this county I expect and deserve better then that.

Posted by: mnm2 | January 14, 2011 5:38 PM | Report abuse

He's a redneck with a black son. Rare, but possible.

Posted by: danw1 | January 14, 2011 5:35 PM | Report abuse

LePage only speaks for one third of the state as he was elected by only a third of the vote. The other two thirds have much better manners.

Posted by: pnwmainah1 | January 14, 2011 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Did they import these folks from Mississippi?


No, but he did in fact have Gov. Haley Barbour appear with him towards the end of the campaign.

Many of the 39 % of my fellow Maine citizens who voted for him tend to applaud these types of outbursts and think he is a "breath of fresh air".

He has been in office less than 2 weeks. Let's revisit things in 4 years and see how folks feel at that point.

I am inclined to think that we'll be experiencing similar outbursts on a regular basis.

Posted by: raydsg | January 14, 2011 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Did they import these folks from Mississippi?


No, but he did in fact have Gov. Haley Barbour appear with him towards the end of the campaign.

Many of the 39 % of my fellow Maine citizens who voted for him tend to applaud these types of outbursts and think he is a "breath of fresh air".

He has been in office less than 2 weeks. Let's revisit things in 4 years and see how folks feel at that point.

I am inclined to think that we'll be experiencing similar outbursts on a regular basis.

Posted by: raydsg | January 14, 2011 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Did they import these folks from Mississippi?


No, but he did in fact have Gov. Haley Barbour appear with him towards the end of the campaign.

Many of the 39 % of my fellow Maine citizens who voted for him tend to applaud these types of outbursts and think he is a "breath of fresh air".

He has been in office less than 2 weeks. Let's revisit things in 4 years and see how folks feel at that point.

I am inclined to think that we'll be experiencing similar outbursts on a regular basis.

Posted by: raydsg | January 14, 2011 5:06 PM | Report abuse

So much for the post-Tucson call for civil discourse in politics.

Posted by: Nosy_Parker | January 14, 2011 4:45 PM | Report abuse

I am glad to see some one take a stand. If you say some thing the NAACP does not like you are a raciest, If you are not a democrat you are a racist. If you are the wrong color you are a racist. They have used that word soooooooo many times it has no meaning anymore. The governor didnt just say kiss my ass off the top of his head I am sure he turned down the invite politely and they called him a racist and that is when he said kiss my ass. The NAACP just does not have the class that they used to because they keep scream fire. It has gotten old when there is no credibility to it. And with a black son which he chose to adopt shows he is not a racist. Another strike against the NAACP and the people that support them.

Posted by: texasoil | January 14, 2011 4:40 PM | Report abuse

The reporter that can be heard laughing at the comments is Anne McNamara. The station is a WGME, a CBS affiliate. They are getting some calls, one could say. http://www.wgme.com/sections/station/news_team/

Posted by: thinkingperson1 | January 14, 2011 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Charming...

Posted by: lc15 | January 14, 2011 4:30 PM | Report abuse

You stay classy, Gov. LePew.

Posted by: Observer691 | January 14, 2011 4:25 PM | Report abuse

ohioan: Oh sure, whenever I can't attend something, the first thing out of my mouth is "kiss my butt". Yes it is 2011, and bigots still walk the planet.

Posted by: jckdoors | January 14, 2011 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Its his business if he can't attend;
we don't know the whole story, either.
Just because he can't attend -- doesn't mean he's racist, that's utterly ridiculous !!
Its 2011, not 1950's.

Posted by: ohioan | January 14, 2011 4:03 PM | Report abuse

So much for the Halibut Clubbing Quitter from Alaska being the only uncivil warrior among gopers this week. Sen. Snowe has eagerly embraced this buffoon's teabag endorsement of her Senate re-election bid in 2012. She needs to take a stand on her Governor's tactless statement. As other posters have stated, there were better ways to decline the invitation.

Posted by: ImaDem | January 14, 2011 3:56 PM | Report abuse

It would have been one thing for the Governor to "respectfully decline" the invitation, or even to respond to their critcism of his failure to attend by saying something like "I welcome the opportunity to meet with all citizens of Maine, but that doesn't mean I'm able to attend dinners for every group that invites me. I'd be happy to find time on my schedule for the NAACP at a mutually convenient time..."

But telling them to "Kiss my butt" is beneath the dignity of the leader of the state, conveys a lack of respect for all of the citizens of Maine, and by implication attacks the citizens the NAACP represents (raising issues of racial division). It is especially divisive, coming from a Governor who was elected with only a plurality of the vote because of divided opponents.

It was an extremely unnecessary and polarizing remark, and LePage needs to apologize now. Sadly, his "tough guy" act is only going to paint him as an insensitive racist and make it harder for him to govern the state (for the one term he'll be in office, because stuff like this guarantees that he won't be re-elected).

Posted by: terje1 | January 14, 2011 3:46 PM | Report abuse

Ah, I love it when adults run government. What's that quote about keeping you mouth shut, otherwise you prove what a fool you are?

Posted by: jckdoors | January 14, 2011 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Just because a group holds a meeting doesn't give them the right to denigrate and slander and libel those who for whatever reason don't want to attend. The NAACP needs to get over themselves. Let them jump in the pews shouting insults but if the governor is re-elected I hope he continues to leave those smarmy, know it all preachers of what everyone should think and do, out in the cold where they belong.

Posted by: lastrebelstanding | January 14, 2011 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, Governor, for keeping Maine classy! ... or not...

Posted by: OldUncleTom | January 14, 2011 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Did they import these folks from Mississippi?

Posted by: Troglodyte | January 14, 2011 3:15 PM | Report abuse

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