Here are some things that Paul “D-Money” LePage has said or done as governor of Maine:
- Said “the enemy right now, the overwhelming majority of people coming in, are people of color, or people of Hispanic origin,” and then left a threatening voicemail with a journalist who called him out for making racially charged remarks.
- Said drug dealers came from out-of-state to deal drugs and “impregnate a young white girl” before leaving. The drug dealers “are guys with the name D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty—these types of guys.”
- Said he would “like to shoot” a cartoonist for a Bangor newspaper.
- Threatened to take away a charter school’s funding if they didn’t rescind a job offer to a political rival.
- Said that President Obama hates white people.
- Compared the IRS to the Gestapo.
- Told the NAACP to “kiss my butt.”
LePage, at best, is controversial. At worst, he’s an unhinged racist. At the very least, he’s ill-equipped for his job: He lashes out unpredictably whenever he’s challenged and increasingly seems to live and work in a parallel reality.
Five years after becoming governor, LePage appears to be figuring this out. Faced with mounting criticism after saying that people of color are “the enemy right now,” LePage said he’s considering stepping down. “I’m looking at all options,” he said while appearing on a Bangor radio station. “I think some things I’ve been asked to do are beyond my ability. I’m not going to say that I’m not going to finish it. I’m not saying that I am going to finish it. ... If I’ve lost my ability to help Maine people, maybe it’s time to move on.”
But LePage also showed that he’s not going to change—and that he thinks that he’s the real victim of his repeated racist remarks. While LePage said there’s “no excuse” for the voicemail he left, he added that being called a racist was “like calling a black man the ‘N’ word or a woman the ‘C’ word.” Saying something racially insensitive while apologizing for making racially insensitive remarks is the most Paul LePage thing possible.
Update: LePage has tweeted a statement: