The Coastal Packet: LePage thinks Attorney General works for him instead of the state

Tuesday, May 2

LePage thinks Attorney General works for him instead of the state

Press Herald - Gov. Paul LePage sued Maine Attorney General Janet Mills on Monday, accusing her of abusing her power by refusing to represent him in federal lawsuits. The Republican governor and Democratic attorney general long have clashed over legal issues, with Mills declining on several occasions to represent LePage in the lawsuits that he frequently joined with other Republican governors.

Mills countered that her office has represented the state in thousands of matters each year. She also noted that the attorney general is an independent constitutional officer whose duty is to represent the public interest.

“The attorney general has never denied the governor the ability to retain outside counsel in any particular matter,” Mills said in a written statement Monday. “We have simply said that whoever the governor chooses should be licensed to practice law and should carry malpractice insurance, two common-sense prerequisites which any prudent business person would employ as well.

“Instead of signing onto another party’s brief at no cost to the taxpayers, however, or hiring a lawyer to draft his own brief, the governor has wasted state resources by hiring a lawyer to file a frivolous lawsuit, complaining that he cannot do exactly what we have told him he can do.”

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