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Maine GOP candidate cites McDonnell, Virginia in fundraising letter

Anita Kumar

Steve Abbott, one of the many candidates competing in a crowded field for the GOP nomination for governor of Maine this summer, sent out a fundraising letter this week.

The pitch? Bob McDonnell and Virginia.

Abbott, former chief of staff to Maine Sen. Susan Collins, criticized Democrats in his home state -- the so-called paper manufacturer of the world -- for allowing fellow Republican McDonnell to lure Mercury Paper to Virginia with its 150 new jobs and $21-million investment.

"Governor McDonnell made it clear in his statement. 'As Governor I will ensure that Virginia is the best state in which to open and grow a business.' '' Abbott wrote. "This is what Maine is up against. States like Virginia have a dramatically different attitude toward business, and they are thriving as a result. We can't stand back and watch these kinds of jobs go to other states, we need to take back Augusta and fix our business environment. As Governor, I will make sure our businesses have the support they need to thrive and grow."

For the record, McDonnell and Abbott don't know each other. McDonnell was alerted to the letter when someone forwarded it to his office this week. But who knows, with a pitch like that, maybe Abbott will even get a donation from the governor of Virginia?

Read the full fundraising letter below:

Dear Friends,

This week, the Governor of Virginia announced that Mercury Paper is making a $21.2 million investment in an expanded facility in the Shenandoah Valley. This facility will create 150 new jobs for that area.

It's hard to take this kind of news. Maine has led the world in paper manufacturing, but the choke-hold Maine Democrats have put on businesses has killed thousands of Maine paper industry jobs. Instead of celebrating the growth of one of our signature industries, we are watching our government do all it can to make sure companies like Mercury Paper invest elsewhere.

Mercury Paper's CEO said the area's pro-business environment was a big factor in their decision. "The support we received from the Commonwealth of Virginia has also played a pivotal role in our selection of Virginia."

Governor McDonnell made it clear in his statement. "As Governor I will ensure that Virginia is the best state in which to open and grow a business."

This is what Maine is up against. States like Virginia have a dramatically different attitude toward business, and they are thriving as a result. We can't stand back and watch these kinds of jobs go to other states, we need to take back Augusta and fix our business environment. As Governor, I will make sure our businesses have the support they need to thrive and grow.

I'm going to need your help. Please contribute to my campaign to make the world know Maine is open for business.

The people of this state know what we need to do. As Republicans, we need to come together to win back control of our state government, so we can make the changes necessary to bring our economy back to life. The stakes are high in this election, but with your help, I know we can get this done.

I appreciate your support,


Paid for and authorized by Abbott for Governor, Samuel A. Ladd III, Treasurer

By Anita Kumar  |  March 26, 2010; 9:00 AM ET
Categories:  2009 Governor's Race , Anita Kumar , Election 2010 , Robert F. McDonnell  
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