A letter from Ben Grant

Dear Maine Democrats:

It’s happening there.  It’s happening here.

Tea Party governors in the Midwest have abandoned all pretext of governing responsibly, and instead are directing all their power at destroying their political enemies: unions and working families.  Legislation pending right now in Wisconsin and Ohio will strip public employees of their power to bargain collectively.  This effort is a coordinated, well-financed campaign by some of this country’s wealthiest conservatives and their front groups.  They will not stop until every worker in these states is low paid, under-appreciated and powerless.  Or until we stop them

I write to you today to make sure no one who cares about working families in Maine is complacent about what we face here under Governor LePage.  Rest assured, he is cut from the same cloth as Governor Walker and Governor Kasich.  We already know that union-busting “right to work” legislation has been proposed, as well as a measure that will void all existing contracts between public employers and employees.

And, we don’t yet know what the second round of LD1 “regulatory reforms” will contain – other than the Governor has promised to attack Maine’s labor laws.  He could attack the right to bargain.  He could dismantle anti-discrimination laws.  He could gut overtime laws.  He could destroy workers’ compensation.  All we do know for sure is that Governor LePage is unpredictable and uninterested in saying no to extremism.

This is the moment the right wing of the GOP has been dreaming about for decades.  We are the last line of defense for the generations of Mainers who worked so hard and persevered so long to create the fair and decent society that we enjoy in Maine.  There is only one thing left to do.  Fight back.  The Maine State Employees Association is kicking off its major push to stand up to Governor LePage this week.  I ask all of you to join them in Augusta.  Here are the details:

Wednesday March 2              9:00 am  State House Hall of Flags
Join MSEA members to show opposition to the Governor’s $524 million tax on state           employees, teachers and retirees
Thursday, March 3                 9:00 am State House Third Floor
Greet legislators and ask them to end the attacks on Maine’s public servants and to stand up for fairness.  Protest the Governor’s Budget.  Pack the Public Hearing.
Noon  MSEA PROTEST outside the State House
1:00 pm Hearing resumes State House Third Floor

There will be much more to come as the Legislature picks up the pace of its activity, and I will make sure you stay informed and engaged in the fight.

In Solidarity,
Benjamin K. Grant, Chairman
Maine Democratic Party

Upcoming press events and rallies at the State House!

Monday, Feb. 28:
WHAT: “Budget Plan: Winners & Losers”
Maine Center for Economic Policy’ Press Conference
WHEN: 9:30 a.m.
WHERE: State House Welcome Center

Thursday, March 3:
WHAT: Workers Rally
WHEN: 12:00 p.m.
WHERE: Outside the State House between the State House and State Office Builder, followed by day-long public testimony before the Appropriations Committee

Monday, March 7:
WHAT: Maine Can Do Better Budget Rally
WHEN: 9:00 a.m.
WHERE: State House Hall of Flags, followed by day-long public testimony before the Appropriations Committee

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