AUGUSTA -- An anti-Paul LePage attack ad being run by the Democratic Governors' Association's "Maine Forward" PAC features a close-up shot of a man's face with the words "40,000 Mainers unemployed." Some viewers may be left with the impression that he is among the unemployed.
However, the man in the ad is named Roger Gay and has been employed for years at General Dynamics in Saco, Maine. Furthermore, Gay's employer has praised the LePage Administration's economic development efforts. From an article in Mainebiz:
"To better address those needs, a new strategy for work-force development is being crafted by Gov. Paul LePage that many manufacturers, as well as other highly technical industries, believe will begin to address the skills gap. . . . 'It's nice to know there are these initiatives going on that are going to address the need to develop the work force,' [Chuck Bates, staff development manager at the General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products facility] says."
"It says a lot that Michaud's out of state, Big Labor benefactors were not only unable to find any unemployed Mainers willing to play this part in an attack ad against Gov. LePage, but the person they did find is employed by a company that praised the governor's reforms," said Maine Republican Party spokesman David Sorensen. "Gov. LePage's pro-growth policies have helped create more than 22,000 private sector jobs and place Maine in the top three states for employment ratio growth since the recession."
Roger Gay ran for the Maine House of Representatives in 2010 as a Green Party Independent candidate. In his profile on the Green Party's website, Gay wrote that unlike major party candidates (like Michael Michaud), he is "not beholden to an entrenched party apparatus."
"The Democrats certainly made an interesting choice when casting their negative attack ad against Gov. LePage," added Sorensen. "Republicans are happy that Mr. Gay and his employer have benefited from the governor's economic reforms and we agree with him that Congressman Michaud is beholden to an entrenched party apparatus."