Maine Governor Paul LePage Said President Obama 'Hates White People' (Updated)
Update: Maine Governor Paul LePage denied having said President Obama "hates white people" Tuesday, after the Portland Press Herald reported accounts of two Republican lawmakers of a speech he made during a fundraiser last week.
"I never said that. And you guys are all about gossip," he told reporters.
You can watch LePage's remarks on Talking Points Memo.
According to two state lawmakers who said they overheard the remark directly, Maine Governor Paul LePage (R) told a group of Republicans last week that President Obama "hates white people." The governor made the comment during a Maine Republican Party fundraiser meet and greet for him and wife Ann LePage.
Both legislators said LePage discussed how Obama could have been the best president ever had he chosen to highlight his biracial heritage — and that he hasn't done so because he hates white people.
The lawmakers are both Republicans and asked that their names be withheld out of fear for political retribution. "Yeah, he said it," one of the lawmakers told the Portland Press Herald. "It was one little thing from a speech, but I think most people there thought it was totally inappropriate."
After LePage's remark was reported in the media, Brent Littlefield, the governor's senior political advisor (who was not at the event), issued a statement that said, "It seems farfetched for anyone, even a newspaper, to make an insinuation the governor is racist given his life history."
The statement referred to LePage's years of participating in the Martin Luther King Jr. breakfast in Waterville, as well as the Jamaica-born man whom the LePages hosted while he attended high school in Maine, Devon Raymond Jr. Because, naturally, if you attend a Martin Luther King Jr. breakfast — multiple times! — you are incapable of racism.
"[Governor LePage] and his family made a choice and sacrifice when they offered Devon the opportunity to join their family many years ago. Paul and Ann call him their son. Paul LePage recognized many people helped him make it out of poverty and he has been determined to help others succeed," the statement continued, further scientifically proving LePage is incapable of racism.
Never mind that in January 2011, the governor declined an invitation to an event hosted by the NAACP in Portland, and when asked what he would say to the group if it questioned his decision, LePage said, "Tell them to kiss my butt."
Impressive and eloquent.
(Image via Maine Department of Education on Flickr)