To the Editor:
We want to thank our new Senator from District 20, Chris Johnson for having the courage to cast a controversial vote as his first vote in the Senate, thereby putting the brakes on the budget agreement hurtling towards approval.
Until Feb. 15, voters in District 20 had no voice in this year’s Senate due to the very late resignation of Dave Trahan, which left us unrepresented from the beginning of the session.
The Appropriations Committee crafted a compromise budget bill that mitigated some of the most egregious cuts proposed by Gov. LePage. However, that compromise left many of the poorest people in Maine out in the cold.
Here is what Chris said in his speech from the floor, “Lack of affordable preventive care is the problem we need to solve, and this supplemental budget is moving in the wrong direction. Talk about reducing the number of people taking advantage of services, translates to real people who will be pushed over the edge from staying healthy and for some, staying alive, to no longer being able to maintain moderately healthy living conditions.”
Hear, hear, Chris. We can do better and we should do better. Chris’ vote gives the Legislature the chance to do just that and it gives the voters of District 20 a voice that needs to be heard.
Ellen and John Dickens, Newcastle