May I suggest Gov. Paul LePage sit down and write a letter, perhaps something like this:

To my fellow Mainers, whom I love so dearly:

In September 2009, I made a big decision in my life. Ann and the family agreed that the time had come to do something to help the state we all love.

So, I, Paul LePage, survivor of poverty and childhood homelessness, embarked on a mission. With the help of a few friends we began a quest for the impossible dream. I became Maine’s first Franco-American governor in modern history.

Lack of cooperation from the opposition party and relentless criticism from a liberal media made it almost impossible to conduct the business of the executive office. It has taken an immeasurable toll on my family.

The partisan opposition and media attacks triggered unpleasant old experiences residing deep within me. I am a fighter — that was the only way I survived my childhood as one of 18 siblings, with an abusive, alcoholic father, and a tough neighborhood.

Unfair personal attacks have on several occasions caused me to lose my temper and, without proper thought, to strike back with a vengeance.

We all have breaking points, and mine came when I was accused of being a racist. As a minority Franco-American who grew up with discrimination in Maine more than 60 years ago and as the father of an adopted Jamaican son of whom I am so proud, that was just too much, and I lost it. I shall always regret the embarrassment that my remarks brought to my beloved state.

I have served faithfully as governor for almost six years now.

I was re-elected, despite my lousy temper, because of the accomplishments in my initial term, and undoubtedly because of my wonderful wife Ann, whose personality and TV ads softened my sometimes intemperate remarks.

As your governor, I am proud and satisfied to point to the largest tax cuts in Maine history. In addition we have succeeded in reform and relief from onerous regulations on our state’s businesses. When I was elected, I promised to introduce welfare reform that would end an era of dependency and fraud. I have delivered. We have succeeded in pension reform, to protect taxpayers and retirees. Maine’s bond rating is one of the best in the nation. And finally, I have led the fight against our drug epidemic.

I believe that my real accomplishments far outweigh my shortcomings.

I am not a diplomat. The people of Maine elected me because I am politically incorrect, in other words I “tell it like it is.”

However, even I understand that comments made in anger can go too far. My comments in reaction to the “racist” charges against me did just that.

The burden of office has become very heavy. Family considerations weigh on me. Ann, and the family, worry about my health. They have been the rock in the storm that has sustained me.

I could go on, to keep fighting for fairness and truth.

But, you know what — this has never been about me. From the beginning our slogan has been “people before politics.”

The unfortunate reality is that after six years a political impasse has been reached. The House and Senate, representing two different parties, cannot now agree on anything, especially on how to deal with me.

It appears obvious to every one that little or nothing can be accomplished in this atmosphere during the final two years of my term.

There is a solution, best for Maine and best for me and my family.

Under Maine law, if a governor does not complete a term in office, the Senate president completes that term.

Our Senate president, Mike Thibodeau, is a talented young man, who has been a loyal friend from the time we were each elected. Mike is a skilled legislator with strong Maine values.

I have given all that I have to give as your governor, and I am concerned about our state’s future. I cannot allow our state to be distracted by me from the need to continue moving forward with the election of conservative Republicans in November.

So, with a heavy heart, but great pride in the accomplishment of six years of meaningful progress for Maine, in consultation with family and faith in God, I shall retire.

Thank you for the wonderful opportunity that you have given your humble servant,

Signed, Paul Richard LePage, governor of the great state of Maine, 2010-2016

Don Roberts is a veteran broadcaster, writer and political consultant. He has served Augusta as a city councilor at-large, charter commission vice chairman and utilities district treasurer.

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