Trick or treat

Dear Editor:

Alas, it is the season for debates and forums. This past Tuesday, I had the opportunity to attend the candidates forum co-sponsored by The Ellsworth American. This forum was designed to encourage us to learn more about those vying for our area’s House districts and State Senate District 7.

Coincidently, in addition to Election Day, we are approaching the celebrations of Halloween and Thanksgiving. The contrast of these two “holidays” has some relevance as we examine our choices for State Senate District 7 and, for that matter, the office of president. However, I will focus on the District 7 Senate race.

The current incumbent (Brian Langley) entered the Senate at the same time Governor LePage was elected. Brian has tended to support the Governor’s many vetoes of legislation that would be helpful to our district. For example: The expansion of MaineCare services, which would be supported for the most part with federal dollars. The majority of both houses of the Legislature voted to support the expansion. However, when the Governor vetoed the measure, our senator chose not to override the veto. As a result, we see increased visits to our free clinic by people who might otherwise have health care coverage. We know that accessible and affordable health care is pivotal to the economic survival of people; it allows avoiding the use of public funds in future to repair damages. Clearly we need fresh, intelligent and locally driven representation in our State Senate seat. We cannot risk sustaining the “House of Horrors” (or Senate) that has evolved under the LePage administration.

We in Hancock County are fortunate. We have Moira O’Neill running for the Senate District 7 seat. If you have met Moira or attended Tuesday’s forum, you know, as I do, that Moira has a grasp of the issues important to all of us and understands the pathways to addressing those issues.

In my early days competing for public office, I was introduced to Jill Goldthwait. At that time Jill was the state senator representing what has become most of Senate District 7. I hold Jill as an example of what I would refer to as the “Gold Standard” for sound, thoughtful and intelligent legislative behavior. Moira possesses many of the same skill sets and potential I saw and admired in Jill. They even share similar nursing backgrounds. Who knows, Moira may even possess Jill’s ability to write pithy, interesting articles for The Ellsworth American. Time will tell.

Our Legislative environment should not feature the scary, unpredictable, horrific Halloween-like political setting that it has become. Instead, we need to elect people who can sit down together and feast on a meal that they have created together.

Electing Moira O’Neill as our state senator will assure that this meal will be prepared and served to the people in our district and the state of Maine — and for this, we will be thankful.


Jim Schatz

Blue Hill

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