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Maine Dem Chair says he would raid rainy day fund to expand welfare

Tone-deaf party leader makes call as leading credit rating agency warns Maine Medicaid expansion puts state’s credit rating at risk

AUGUSTA – Today, Maine Republican Party executive director Jason Savage released the following statement on the irresponsible call by Maine Democratic Party Chairman Phil Bartlett in a radio interview Friday morning to raid Maine’s critical rainy day fund to pay for Medicaid expansion for able-bodied adults without children.

“While we appreciate Chairman Bartlett’s honesty about wanting to gut our hard-earned rainy day fund to pay for more welfare spending, this would be disastrous for Maine. Our surplus is there for emergencies, not for making more able-bodied people dependent on government–the rainy day fund needs to grow, not shrink.

This isn’t a game and this isn’t a fantasy world. Maine has limited resources. Real people in true need would be put at risk by Chairman Bartlett’s proposal. The rainy day fund would run dry, placing us in the situation of deciding between harmful tax hikes that would force more of our kids to leave Maine to find good jobs, or force cuts to services for our elderly and desperately disabled. We’ve been down this road before and we must never again face the awful choice between hurting our kids or those most in need, or both, because we chose to provide welfare to able-bodied adults.

It is time for Democrats and their liberal special interest group allies to own up to what they have done. How do we pay for your welfare expansion without raising taxes, destroying our state’s credit, or cutting services for those most in need who we all agree must always have our support?

Our solution in Maine must be strengthening opportunity for prosperity, not opportunity for dependence. Our best days can be ahead of us, not behind us.”

To listen to Maine Democratic Party Chairman Phil Bartlett call for raiding the rainy day fund to pay for welfare expansion, click here.

To read about Moody’s warning that Maine’s Medicaid expansion puts the state’s credit rating at risk, click here.

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