Maine Governor Paul LePage apologized Friday for making a racist “white girl” remark at a town hall meeting. Despite the apology, LePage insisted he was being unfairly targeted for the slip-up.
LePage’s issues started about half-an-hour into a town hall meeting in Bridgton Thursday night. NBC News reports that the governor was talking about the heroin problem in the state and blamed out-of-state drug dealers for the problem.
He told a large crowd that the heroin dealers “are guys with the name D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty — these types of guys — they come from Connecticut and New York, they come up here, they sell their heroin, they go back home.”
LePage added, “Incidentally, half the time they impregnate a young white girl before they leave, which is a real sad thing because then we have another issue we have to deal with down the road.”
The reaction to Gov. LePage’s comments was quick. Moderate Republicans joined Democrats in condemning the comments and demanding an apology.
CNN notes that the Clinton campaign voiced its derision for the comments when aide Marlon Marshall called LePage’s comments racist, adding that they were “not only offensive and hurtful, but they try to cover up the very real epidemic of drug abuse facing people in this state and across the country.”
While Gov. Paul LePage did apologize for the comments, he went after the journalists who reported them, saying, “If I was perfect, I would be a reporter. If you want to make it racist, go ahead and do what you want.” He added that he was “going impromptu” and meant to say “Maine women,” but said “white women” instead.
LePage also criticized Maine’s media for not reporting enough on the state’s growing drug problem. He added to them, “Get your heads out of the sand.”
Gov. Paul LePage is no stranger to making controversial comments, including when he allegedly claimed President Barack Obama hates white people. He later denied making the comment.