Vote for Cutler

In a revealing moment at Wednesday night’s gubernatorial debate, which may have gone unnoticed by many viewers, Gov. Paul LePage asked Eliot Cutler if he had been offered the Democratic nomination after the 2010 election. Cutler’s answer was yes.

What may have eluded many viewers was the reason why he declined that offer. Sure, a self-serving candidate, ambitious at all costs to get to the Blaine House, might have said yes in order to coast to victory. But Cutler is different. He is independent, like Maine. He instead bucked the party and stood firm in his belief that, in order to do the job the people of Maine deserve, he needed to restore Maine’s tradition of political independence.

This November, let’s bring independence back to Augusta. Let’s vote for our hopes and dreams. Let’s vote for Cutler.

Frank Weil


Stehle for sheriff

I may work for Allen Stehle, but let no thoughts of a biased employee get in the way of this message. I have been associated with Allen for four years — my husband is one of his previous students — and even before I met him, he had my respect. For students at Beal College, Allen is a mentor, a friend and somewhat of a legend. He knows his students as well as he knows his own family, and it shows in the respect and admiration he receives from them. As an employer, Allen is supportive, knowledgeable and is always willing to engage.

I firmly believe that as Penobscot County sheriff, Allen Stehle will bring the same level of professionalism, respect and enthusiasm to our county. I could list his accomplishments, his resume and his professional abilities, but that would simply take up too much space. Allen is the best candidate for Penobscot County and will do whatever it takes to protect our interests.

Tegan Mills


Doughnut base

The current stance by Commissioner Chandler Woodcock and the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife concerning the question about how we allow our bears to be hunted is indefensible. That they are allowing employees of the agency to appear in advertisements, which encourage people to vote no on the question of fair chase, shows he and the department have little regard for the taxpayers of this state. I oppose the inhumane practices of baiting, hounding and trapping. I also resent the DIF&W for using my tax money to promote their agenda.

Since these practices have been discontinued in other states, I need to question the DIF&W’s biologists’ reasoning. It would appear that because their department is partly funded by license fees, they are just trying to protect their paycheck. The fact that they need to be sued in order to make them release the documents that have been requested under the Freedom of Access Act makes you wonder what they are hiding.

Because Woodcock is a political appointee of Gov. Paul LePage’s, I need to believe this is not all about the bears but is a means for LePage to throw some red meat to his base — or in this case a bunch of jelly doughnuts.

Gary Gusinger


Collins and safety

Law enforcement is a difficult and demanding job, not only for the officer but for their families as well. It’s the goal of every officer to accomplish their duties but also to come home safe to their families after every shift. This not only requires the cooperation and support of the public but the proper resources, training and equipment.

Ultimately, it requires the commitment and leadership of those in office to support first responders. That’s why the Maine Association of Police is proud to endorse U.S. Sen. Susan Collins for Senate.

She is not one who will adhere to a partisan platform in providing for the safety of our communities or those committed to serving them. Her unwavering support of first responders, especially law enforcement, has garnered the resources and support necessary to assist in protecting our communities in Maine and throughout the country during these uncertain and dangerous times.

As an example, Collins is supporting the continuation of the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program. The program provides funds to departments that otherwise could not afford them, which is important in a rural state like Maine. Unfortunately, there are questions from other members of Congress about whether the program should continue. These vests allow countless officers to go home safe.

Your support of Collins will allow first responders to serve safely on the front lines.

Paul Gaspar

South Portland

Vote Burstein

I urge fellow residents of Belmont, Liberty, Lincolnville, Montville, Morrill, Palermo and Searsmont to support Christine Burstein to be our next state representative for District 96. I have come to know her over the last year and am impressed by her common sense, fairness, listening skills and organization. She has met many challenges during the many chapters of her life — during a nursing career, as a business owner, as a 10-ton ship pilot and as a community member and mother, to mention a few.

Now, Christine has turned her unwavering energy, persistent optimism and commitment to public service to the job of running for the Maine’s House of Representatives. One of her key skills is bringing people together and working out complex situations. The concerns she’s heard from people all over our district have contributed to her belief that policymakers can and must put aside differences and use thorough analysis, combined with compassion, to make Maine an even better place for our residents to live, work and play.

Please vote for Burstein on Nov. 4.

Evelyn deFrees


Responsible governing

Maine needs a governor who is responsible, sees a problem and fixes it. Former Maine governors and legislators were irresponsible. Huge hospital bills accumulated for years under the leadership of Democrats. Gov. Paul LePage paid the hospital bills. He did the right thing.

Unfunded liability was a massive problem for the Maine state retirement system. Lawmakers accepted unions’ demands, promising increases without sufficient revenue. Unions didn’t increase their contributions, so unfunded liabilities reached $4 billion by 2011. These actions were irresponsible. Maine pensions needed reform.

Meanwhile, instead of blaming the irresponsibility of former leaders, the governor’s opponents attacked LePage. He and lawmakers saved state workers pensions for years to come. Thank you, LePage. You did the right thing.

Linda Lemieux


Election notice

The Bangor Daily News will stop accepting letters and commentary related to the Nov. 4 election on Monday, Oct. 27. We will stop publishing election-related letters and columns with the Nov. 1-2 edition. Not all submissions can be printed.