U.S. Secret Service agents met with a Democratic lawmaker from South Portland who posted a Facebook rant against President Trump that included a threat against the president, the lawmaker said Friday.

Rep. Scott Hamann said he met with agents Thursday at his home.

“We had a good conversation,” Hamann said in a statement sent to the Portland Press Herald on Friday. “Their determination was that it was a satirical political rant and not a threat in any way. Case closed. I did not make any threat.”

But Hamann, who said he has received hundreds of threatening calls, is still facing blowback from the post, which he has since deleted.

On Friday, House Speaker Sara Gideon, D-Freeport, said Hamann had been kicked off two legislative committees on which he served: Health and Human Services and the Marijuana Legalization Committee.

In a statement Friday, Gideon said the repercussions for Hamann should send a signal to other lawmakers that such comments will be met with swift action. Gideon notified Hamann of her decision Thursday evening, she said.

“Rep. Hamann’s statements this week were inexcusable and unacceptable,” Gideon said. “Elected officials, at every level of government, must hold themselves to a higher standard and set an example of civility. As he has done publicly, Rep. Hamann again apologized and expressed deep remorse when I spoke with him last night.”

“I hope this consequence sends a clear signal to all members of the House of Representatives that they are expected to conduct themselves with respect at all times and in all media,” she said.

In the Facebook post, Hamann criticized Trump on several fronts, particularly his treatment of women, and wrote, “Trump is a half term president, at most, especially if I ever get within 10 feet of that (vulgar term).”

The Maine Republican Party copied the post before it was taken down and distributed it widely Wednesday, calling for Hamann to resign from the Legislature. Hamann apologized for the post, but the story has also drawn attention from a handful of conservative media outlets, including the Washington Times, Fox News and The Daily Caller.

In his statement Friday, Hamann reiterated that his post was intended as satire.

“My intent was to use the same aggressive rhetoric I hear coming from the extreme right, and apply it to a liberal worldview in a satirical fashion to demonstrate how despicable their language is. I do not talk like that in my daily life, nor do I accept it if others do.”

Hamann did not respond to questions about being removed from his committees, or how he would respond to people in Maine who read his comments literally.

Gideon did not return a call Friday seeking further comment about her decision to remove Hamann from the committees.

State Republican Party leader Jason Savage reiterated his party’s criticism late Friday, and in a statement said Gideon’s response “does not fix the problem,” and was meant more to head off bad publicity.

“Speaker Gideon’s removal of Rep. Hamann from his committee assignments does not fix the problem, but is an attempt to silence the public outcry,” Savage said. “It is a step in the right direction, but it doesn’t go far enough.”

Savage said he has no faith in Hamann’s judgment, and pressed for him to “make it right or resign.”

Hamann isn’t the first state legislator whose use of social media has had professional repercussions.

In March 2015, former state Sen. Mike Willette, a Presque Isle Republican, was forced to resign the chairmanship of the Legislature’s State and Local Government Committee after he posted derogatory remarks about then-President Barack Obama and Muslims on Facebook.

Willette criticized Obama’s handling of the Islamic State and said that Obama would deal with the terrorist group at “the family reunion.” Previous posts by Willette included comments and memes about Muslims and immigrants that have been criticized as racist, bigoted and xenophobic.

Willette publicly apologized for the posts during a speech on the Senate floor before he resigned his chairmanship.

In 2015, Republican Rep. Lawrence Lockman of Amherst called Lewiston mayoral candidate Ben Chin an “anti-Christian bigot” in a Facebook post, drawing criticism from Chin’s supporters and others.

Around South Portland, residents interviewed said they had barely heard of the controversy involving Hamann, but they were all familiar with the way political discourse in America has changed since the 2016 presidential election.

Susan Lockwood, 72, said she has lived in South Portland for about 18 months, and hadn’t heard of Hamann’s comments, but said they fit into the category of coarse discussions that often fly unabated on social media.

“That’s just as unacceptable as some of these other things we’re seeing on Facebook and Twitter,” Lockwood said. “Obviously (politics) is a dirty business. It doesn’t do any Democrats any good to sink to the level of what’s going on.”

Another South Portland resident, Jack Ivers, said he’d like to see more civility from politicians. Although he hadn’t heard about Hamann’s recent comments, Ivers said he believes the national political discourse hasn’t reached a low point yet.

“It’s going to take a long time to pull the Band-Aid off and say enough is enough,” said Ivers, 75.

Dave Abramson, 54, said commentary such as Hamann’s should concern everyone, no matter their political leanings.

“It starts at the national level, with the press-bashing and all the other stuff that drives me nuts,” Abramson said. “Before this era we didn’t really see this. Regardless of who it’s been, the president has set the example. We all have to be responsible for our behavior. When our leaders, who we elected, don’t set that tone, it’s a problem.”

Matt Byrne can be contacted at 791-6303 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: MattByrnePPH