Republican Gov. Paul LePage of Maine appeared to make a racist remark about black people in Richmond, Maine, on Jan. 6, which he initially denied was racial, but admitted on Feb. 9 was about "black dealers" (video below).
LePage originally told a town hall meeting:
"The traffickers, these aren’t people who take drugs. These are guys by the name D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty. These type of guys that come from Connecticut and New York. They come up here, they sell their heroin, then they go back home.
"Incidentally, half the time they impregnate a young white girl before they leave, which is the real sad thing, because now we have another issue that we have to deal with down the road."
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After being called out for his remarks, LePage told a press conference on Jan. 8: “Instead of saying ‘Maine women’ I said ‘white women,’ and I’m not going to apologize to the Maine women for that. Because if you go to Maine, you’ll see that we’re essentially 95 percent white," reported BuzzFeed News.
When asked by a reporter if he was going to apologize to black people, LePage insisted: “I never said anything about white or black on traffickers.”
“Your comment is inappropriate because I didn’t say anything about black,” LePage added.
When pressed by the reporter about his use of the names that seem to be ethnically targeted, LePage responded, “Yeah, what are they, black? I don’t know who they are, I just read the names.”
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“I get a report, and they’re saying his street name ‘D-Money,’ street name ‘Smoothie.’ I don’t know where they’re from,” LePage said. “I know where they’re from, I don’t know if they’re white, black, Asian, I don’t know.”
LePage recently told WVOM radio that he was referring to "black dealers," notes Atlanta Black Star:
"I agree, and we got a few more drug agents, but what did I have to do? I had to go screaming at the top of my lungs about black dealers coming in and doing the things that they’re doing to our state.
"I had to scream about guillotines and those types of things before they were embarrassed into giving us a handful of DEA agents. So is what it takes with this 127th [legislature]."