Gov. Mills announced late last month that she is supporting the largest state tax increase on working Mainers in more than two decades. What a twist.

If you’re keeping track at home, that’s three of her major campaign promises now consigned to history’s ash heap. First, Mills shredded the religious and philosophical exemptions for vaccine mandates after promising she wouldn’t. You’re welcome, Big Pharma.

Then, after swearing last year she wouldn’t bring late-term abortion to Maine, she broke that promise two months later to reward Planned Parenthood for their generous campaign spending. They’re still running deceitful ads to this day.

Now, Mills is backing the biggest tax increase on Maine workers since Angus King was just a TV personality — even though she promised not to raise our taxes. Are you noticing a pattern with our Democratic chief executive and her promises?

The new tax on workers will fund a paid leave program that reminds me of what Nancy Pelosi said of Obamacare: “We’ve gotta pass the bill so that you can find out what’s in it.”

As the Senate majority leader said of this plan, “We always say the devil is in the details. The devil may be in the implementation of this.” She is right, because the only thing set in stone with this plan are a few vague limits and the $360 million-per-year tax increase. Much of this program will be determined over the next four years by Augusta bureaucrats and the rules they’ll write.


This plan takes money out of working Mainers’ pockets, gives it to lawyers and consultants and hopes the benefits pay off. Maine can’t afford to govern like that. We’re already the third-highest taxed state as a proportion of income, according to WalletHub. What do we have to show for it besides shuttered factories and a toxic business environment?

In the 2014-15 biennium, Maine’s budget was about $6.4 billion. This year, Democrats passed a partisan budget that will spend nearly $11 billion during the two-year period. Have your roads, schools and social services gotten $4 billion better over the last decade?

We all agree that Maine workers should be able to securely take time off from work to attend to life’s misfortunes, joys and surprises. However, there is a better way to accomplish this bipartisan goal. We can take care of Maine’s workers without also punishing them by making it harder to afford groceries and a warm home.

Right next door in New Hampshire they have adopted a system that is purely voluntary and doesn’t shrink paychecks during a period of high inflation. The Mills administration spoke positively about the New Hampshire model during committee hearings. It’s a good model because it prudently balances disparate interests and is voluntary.

Yet for some reason the governor abandoned this approach in favor of a mandatory one and a new regressive tax. Look no further than her op-ed to learn why she’s once again going back on her word.

“I have repeatedly said I am opposed to increasing taxes,” she said. “I have to measure my concerns about those costs against the prospect of a referendum that would likely result in a payroll tax anyways.”


Mills is unwilling to stand up to the far-left activist fringe in Portland to defeat a harmful bill and a worse referendum. She could block this bad plan — and the activists’ — in a single news conference.

But she won’t.

Now ask yourself if breaking promises and letting radicals pilfer Mainers’ paychecks to pay for expensive policy experiments is any way to lead. It’s not.

And what’s next? Will Gov. Mills courageously settle for a 14% income tax when Portland’s far-left activists threaten to storm the capitol with a 15% version?

It makes you wonder who’s really running the Blaine House, the moderate fiscal conservative who won reelection last year or the socialist dark money activists in Portland?

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