Political Animal


July 08, 2012 9:17 AM Maine’s Governor Compares The IRS To The Gestapo

By Ben Jacobs

In his weekly radio address, Maine’s Tea Party Governor, Paul LePage, compared the IRS to Adolf Hitler’s secret police in an attack on the Affordable Care Act. LePage railed against the Supreme Court’s decision ten days ago saying “You must buy health insurance or pay the new Gestapo — the IRS.” Such loaded rhetoric is nothing new for LePage, who, after refusing to attend an event held by the NAACP commemorating Martin Luther King Day last year, said the NAACP could “kiss my butt.”

While it’s easy to take potshots at LePage for his extreme rhetoric, his speech contained a surprisingly tactful segment. Although LePage attacked the federal government for the expansion of Medicaid contained within the ACA, he didn’t rule out joining other Republican governors, like Bobby Jindal, in turning down the funds. As the Portland Press-Herald pointed out: “LePage says he needs more answers before making a decision about the Medicaid expansion, which has been assailed by fellow Republican governors.”

Even though Maine is a Democratic leaning state, it’s a strong indication that even a very right wing governor is wary of coming out against the Medicaid expansion.

Ben Jacobs is a journalist living in New York. He is a former reporter for Newsweek/The Daily Beast and contributor to the Boston Globe editorial page. Follow him on Twitter @bencjacobs.


  • c u n d gulag on July 08, 2012 10:30 AM:

    It never fails to amaze me when voters elect obnoxious fools as leaders.
    I know the Conservatives look at being obnoxious and being ignorant as their best strengths, but what do the Independents have to say for themselves?

    Ah, never mind.
    I know.
    Most of them are too lazy and/or disinterested in politics, and wait 'til the last moment to look into whose running, and they're told they're obligated to vote so they then go around asking their family members, friends, and co-workers, who to vote for, and there's always some crazy Bircher, racist, misogynist, xenophobe, and/or homophobe around - and too many of them look at being an obnoxious fool are great character traits in a candidate, 'cause he/she's just like them, and they can have a beer with 'em, as opposed to that calm and rational know-it-all on the other side.

  • Old Uncle Dave on July 08, 2012 12:47 PM:

    The IRS is not the american gestapo; that title belongs to the thugs of HomSec who set up check points on roads and molest travelers at airports.

  • PTate in MN on July 08, 2012 1:47 PM:

    I wonder when, if, enough Americans will start to recognize that this kind of "IRS as Gestapo" talk by a Governor does not reflect a patriot's belief in limited government but sedition, the stirring of rebellion against a legitimate government.

    LePage is just another stooge for the billionaire owners of the GOP. What they want is not limited government but the end of the nation-state known as the USA. They seek a "government" which will provide the huge military they need to defend their economic interests overseas but which will not threaten to tax them to support the common welfare or limit their exploitation of US natural resources.

    And the Tea Party conservatives who voted LePage into office think that they are patriots defending the US against communism/socialism/fascism, not gullible fools playing right into the hands of those who wish to destroy government of, by and for the people. Until they can comprehend the difference between "limited government" and "oligarchy" the USA is at risk.

  • schtick on July 08, 2012 2:53 PM:

    Funny he calls the IRS the Gestapo while I call the republican party that sets up warrantless wiretapping, torture, unlimited detainment without charges or trial, strip-searching and pat-downs at airports as the true Gestapo following the nazi playbook.