Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Bath, Maine, United States

I grew up in a military family and joined the Air Force in 1971 during the Vietnam War. It was there that I became a peace activist.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Story behind the Carson back flip in Maine Senate

I confirmed this morning with Mark Roman (Solon) who watched the 'heated discussion' between BIW V-P John Fitzgerald and Sen. Brownie Carson (D-Harpswell) yesterday just outside the Maine Senate doors before the legislative session began.

Mark described it as intense, about three minutes long, and clearly a dispute between the two men with no back slapping afterwards as is usually done between legislators and those seeking some kind of favor from them.

On her way home last night Mary Beth heard on MPBN radio a story about the GD corporate welfare bill passing the House and Senate and the news reporter stated that the 'Midcoast delegation' all voted in favor of BIW.  Carson is one of those 'Midcoast' state legislators.

My theory on this is that BIW wanted total Midcoast support on this bill - BIW can't afford to have any legislators from the Midcoast peeling off and voting against it.  If that ever happened it would give license to other legislators around the state to abandon ship.

Carson, one can hear it in his statement on this video, clearly understood that this was a bad bill.  Fitzgerald likely greeted him near the Senate chambers door and when he heard (or sensed) some wavering by Carson he lit into him.

I was sitting in the balcony and Carson's seat in the chambers was just below me.  I watched him feverishly writing his statement on a pink piece of paper and when he got up and began talking we all figured he was going against the bill.

In the end he caved to political expediency (and possibly threats).  He will not likely tell many what Fitzgerald said to him.

But in the end the power of BIW/GD was once again enforced on the Maine legislature which has largely been outsourced to the weapons corporation.



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