AUGUSTA – On Wednesday, Senate President Troy Jackson, D-Allagash, sent a letter to Republican legislative leaders reiterating the previously agreed upon plan to reconvene the Legislature for a special session if and when it is safe for the general public. The letter outlined priorities for a possible special session, pushed back against false partisan narratives and highlighted what’s at stake for Maine people, small businesses, seniors and communities. The letter was sent in response to an open letter from Senate Minority Leader Dana Dow, R-Waldoboro, House Minority Leader Kathleen Dillingham, R-Oxford, Assistant Senate Minority Leader Jeff Timberlake, R-Turner, and Assistant House Minority Leader Trey Stewart, R-Presque Isle, that was sent to Presiding Officers and members of the press earlier that same day.
Pres. Jackson released the following statement in response to the letter and repeated political stunts:
“Maine people deserve better than partisan games from Republicans. While Republican lawmakers have been holding gimmicky press conferences and spreading division, my colleagues and I have spent four months on the ground in our communities, working to resolve unemployment claims, advocating for our small businesses, and helping connect people with resources for health care, rental relief, and food. Our job is to stand up for small businesses, support working families and seniors, and make sure Mainers can afford the care and medication to stay healthy. And we intend to follow through.
”Republican leaders, it seems, would rather rewrite the narrative to avoid doing their work, even if it jeopardizes the health and safety of Maine people. To me, that’s a new low. In logging, I was never hired to do half the job, nor was I able to pick and choose which parts of the job I wanted to do. The same is true for the Legislature. Voters didn’t send us to Augusta to only debate the bills we liked. They sent us here to make tough decisions and do the whole job.
“If and when the Legislature can reconvene in a way that doesn’t jeopardize the health of the very people we serve, we will take a smart and measured approach regarding which bills become law. I know given the economic circumstances and public health crisis, I’ll be making prudent decisions with my votes focusing on measures that support the health and well-being of Maine families, small businesses, seniors and communities. I told my Republicans colleagues that I plan to continue on the same financially prudent path that grew our state’s Rainy Day Funds to historic highs. I’d encourage them to do the same and ask that they refrain from twisting the truth of our conversations to fit their divisive, partisan narrative.”