Cutler, momentarily wearing his fiscal conservative’s disguise, isn’t about to endorse anything that drastic. Even though his education and health-care initiatives, proposed while costumed as a fiscal liberal, would carry price tags several times the amount the Woodbury plan would raise. His solution, from his recently published book called A State of Opportunity, goes like this: “The right tests for good governance aren’t based on party dogma or partisan rants. The right tests aren’t whether state government is taxing or spending more or less, or if it is imposing more or fewer rules and regulations. The right tests of good governance are performance and outcomes: Are Maine citizens better off? Do our kids have a future in Maine? Is Maine a place of opportunity?”
In other words, voters shouldn’t worry about how he’s going to pay for his grandiose ideas, because what’s really important is how it all works out in the end. Which we won’t know for years or, possibly, decades. By which time, he’ll be long retired and you can blame the mess he left behind on whatever poor sap has the misfortune of succeeding him in the Blaine House.
“We need to stop talking about ‘more government’ versus ‘less government,’” Cutler writes, because, as already noted, he’s for both. Or neither. It’s not too clear. And anyway, it’s not important. Because voters don’t really need to know the specifics of his plan. They only need to know he has one. And it’s a swell one, too. You’ll see in 2023 or so, when he’s made us younger, richer, smarter, healthier, and cooler.
All of which seems unlikely. Especially that last one.
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