AUGUSTA — Gov. Paul LePage said during an afternoon press conference that he’s proposing the cuts to Medicaid because the state is not taking in enough tax revenues to continue to support the program.

“This is not something I want to do or I take great pride in doing,” he said.

In deciding where to cut, LePage said he wanted to protect the nursing homes and the mentally ill. But there were not enough funds for the state to continue to pay for residential homes that house 6,000 people, many of them elderly or disabled.

Also, there’s not enough money for programs such as Head Start, he said.

Although some who testified today suggested that the state consider tax increases to cover the hole, LePage said he’s not willing to go there.

“The rest of the people who do pay taxes are struggling as well,” he said.

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