October 20, 2019
BANGOR DAILY NEWS (BANGOR, MAINE

Countering Baldacci’s allegations

It is impossible to let a recent guest column by a member of the Baldacci machine go unanswered. Bob Baldacci takes issue with the fact that Gov. McKernan was able to come through the difficult budget time last spring without raising taxes. The fact remains, irrespective of how much Joe Brennan and his local political cronies wish it were not.

The simple fact is: No new taxes were raised in 1990 to address the slowing New England economy and balancing Maine’s budget. Period!

Baldacci, like Joe Brennan, charges Gov. McKernan with raising new taxes to offset an anticipated revenue shorfall….

Brennan/Baldacci claim the new taxes on videotapes, appliances, furniture, long-term lodging, boats, drinks, tobacco, gasoline, and oil were raised to offset the 1990 budget shortfall. This simply isn’t so. All of the above taxes and fees were a result of legislative initiatives put on the books in legislative sessions prior to 1990 to fund very specific programs, in 1988 and 1989, during the “economic good times”!…

Although it is always difficult to be absolutely sure who voted for what in the legislature, all of these programs received the overwhelming, if not unaninmous support, of the legislature, including Baldacci’s brother, John.

It seems obvious that Joe Brennan, with the help of underlings from the Baldacci machine, is trying to con the public into believing that these taxes and fees were used to balance the 1990 budget. It simply isn’t true. Their feigned indignation over Gov. McKernan’s analysis of how he balanced the 1990 budget without raising taxes seems to be little more than a cover for Joe Brennan’s real problem, which is: lots of whining doom-and-gloom predictions without any substantial proposals of his own for the future. I am sure Maine people will exhibit their characteristic good common sense on Nov. 6 and vote to continue Gov. McKernnan’s excellent leadership for another four years. William L. England Bangor


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