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BUSTED: Maine’s ex-Tea Party governor spent money marked for domestic violence prevention …elsewhere

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When Republican Paul LePage was serving as governor of Maine in 2012, he voiced his support for a program designed to protect survivors of domestic violence in that New England border state. But the Bangor Daily News’ Erin Rhoda is reporting that the money that was intended for that program was spent elsewhere.

Maine’s anti-domestic violence program came about after Maine resident Amy Bagley Lake and her two children were murdered in 2011 by her estranged husband, who was out on bail. The program called for the purchase of monitoring devices that would alert police whenever someone accused of domestic violence showed up at an alleged victim’s home or workplace. $18,000 was raised for the program, and LePage promised an additional $18,000 that was meant to come from a state contingency fund — bringing the total to $36,000.

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Rhoda, however, is reporting that “most of the money never went to electronic monitoring programs.” Citing Ryan Thornell (former executive director of the Maine Board of Corrections) as a source, Rhoda reports that Page’s administration “ended up spending $26,000 of the total on day-to-day jail operations.”

Kelly Gay, a friend of Lake and supporter of the program, handed LePage a check for $18,000 at a press conference in 2012. And Gay told the Bangor Daily News that LePage let down domestic violence survivors in her state by not using all of that $36,000 for the program is was intended for.

“To hear that now the funds that we raised were basically given away to some other account without so much as a word to us about it makes me feel deeply saddened and sick inside,” Gay told the Bangor Daily News.

Gay had no kind words for LePage, asserting, “Why weren’t the lives of the women and children in the State of Maine worth the funds that it would have cost to run a proximity monitoring program? Why was the money left just sitting there and then given away? Is a high balance in the state’s bank account that makes you look like a great governor more important than saving lives?”

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LePage, now 70, served two terms as governor of Maine but was term-limited in 2018. Gov. Janet Mills, a Democrat and Maine’s former attorney general, won the state’s 2018 gubernatorial race, defeating Republican Shawn Moody in the general election.

 

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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‘He’s getting more panicked’: Editor lays out how Trump’s self-destruction could set the world on fire

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On Tuesday's edition of MSNBC's "Deadline: White House," Bloomberg Opinion executive editor Tim O'Brien said that President Donald Trump is losing what little control he had — and getting all the more dangerous for it.

"I think he’s getting more panicked," said O'Brien. "I think — I suspect that Trump, when the Mueller investigation ended, thought that sort of existential threats to his presidency had been put to rest, and in very short order I think 'Trump the racist' became a very appropriate and damning moniker that got attached to him after Elijah Cummings, 'Trump the racist' will be part of his historical legacy. And now you have the economy starting to deteriorate a bit around the edges. Whether or not that’s going to be a recession or not, I don’t know, but there’s enough alarm bells on there for a president who has routinely attached his reputation, to a strong economy that’s a job creating economy, and markets are going bananas."

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Mexican court rules to allow recreational cocaine use

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A Mexican judge has granted two people's requests to be allowed to use cocaine recreationally, the organization behind the cases said Tuesday, calling it a "historic step" -- though it must first be reviewed by a higher court.

The rulings, the first of their kind in Mexico, would allow the two petitioners to "possess, transport and use cocaine," but not to sell it, according to Mexico United Against Crime, an organization devoted to ending the Latin American country's "war on drugs."

The Mexico City court ordered the national health regulator, COFEPRIS, to authorize the petitioners' cocaine use in personal, recreational doses, the organization said.

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US President Trump reiterates call for Russia to rejoin ‘G8’

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US President Donald Trump renewed calls on Tuesday to let Russia join the G7 -- thus making it the G8 again -- group of advanced industrialized countries.

Speaking to reporters at the White House, Trump noted that his Democratic predecessor, Barack Obama, had wantedRussia out of what used to be the G8 "because Putin outsmarted him”.

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