There are no two governors with more in common than Chris Christie and Paul LePage.

In polite company, they refer to themselves as “conservatives,” which is a euphemism widely promoted by the Republican Party.

In this context, conservative really means adhering to the right-wing or reactionary policies that have, at least since Lincoln, moved further and further to the right, culminating in the tea party.

Here are two men who have been elected under unusual circumstances. In LePage’s case, an iosyncratic voting process let him win with only 39 percent of the vote. In Christie’s case, he appeared in the wake of a natural disaster to be responsive and even (gasp) willing to accept the support of President Barack Obama during the crisis.

Both governors are anti-labor, demonize the poor as parasites and view environmental regulation as an impediment to the further acquisition of wealth by individuals (of course, corporations are now “individuals”) who are responsible for their campaign funding.

In management style, both Christie and LePage are bullies and use intimidation and bluster in lieu of negotiation and statesmanship.

I don’t think Mainers would like to see the state look more and more like New Jersey, but if LePage gets re-elected, that could very well be the case.

Peter Froehlich Whitefield

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