Look out, Cleveland

Politics and Other Mistakes
By AL DIAMON  |  August 21, 2014

Eric Brakey is an energetic guy.

But as an admirer of sloth, I have intense disdain for the excessively active.

Even so, I’ll try to be objective in assessing Brakey’s chances this November of winning a state Senate seat representing Auburn, Minot, Mechanic Falls, Poland, and New Gloucester. That contest could be crucial in deciding control of the Senate. But before we get to the boring political stuff, let’s deal with that energetic thing.

Brakey, 26, first came to public notice as one of the Ron Paul insurgents who hijacked the 2012 Republican state convention. As Maine director of Paul’s presidential campaign, he helped elect a renegade slate of Paul delegates, including himself, to the GOP national convention. The Republican establishment eventually got the upstarts thrown out for violating an obscure rule against excessive peppiness. But Brakey had established himself as a force to be reckoned with—if one doesn’t find reckoning to be overly tiring.

Brakey, who listed his occupation at the time as professional actor, next turned up in a 2013 YouTube video dressed only in a Speedo and dancing manically. It was circulated by one of his enemies in the GOP in an effort to show he was (I’m not making this up) demonically possessed. But it turned out the footage was merely outtakes from a TV spot for a vitamin drink.

Brakey told the Portland Press Herald, “It shows that I’m a full human being with more experience than just working in politics…It shows that I’m not just a career politician.”

It turns out the phrase “career politician” is Brakey’s favorite epithet. In a video announcing his Senate candidacy, he used it at least once every 45 seconds.

By the time that campaign footage was posted on his website, Brakey was no longer referring to himself as an actor. He was now a “Financial Record Keeper” for his family’s business, Brakey Energy.

Never heard of it? That could be because the company only operates in Ohio (where, among other services, it advises corporations on ways to avoid energy efficiency standards). The commute from Auburn to Shaker Heights would probably exhaust a less robust individual.

But there’s no way someone as full of vim and vigor as Brakey would entirely forsake acting. According to his website, he’s involved in community theater in his spare time. Of which there can’t be much, since he’s also a Big Brother, volunteers to teach computer science to home-schooled students, helps old ladies across the street, and provides vitamin water to the unhealthy.

As if that weren’t enough, he heads up the libertarian Defense of Liberty political action committee (funded by Linda Bean of lobster-roll fame and members of his family), which recently gave more than half of the Legislature—mostly Democrats—a grade of “F” or the even-worse label of being a “constitutional threat.” Among the PAC’s goals are making gold and silver legal tender and halting the implementation of the United Nation’s dreaded Agenda 21.

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