Governor wants secretary of state to investigate voters

Another dispute over legalizing marijuana

AUGUSTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) — The marijuana referendum passed by voters will become law by the end of January. The secretary of state has certified the vote and has sent it to Gov. Paul LePage for his signature.

The governor typically signs the proclamation of the result to make it official. But earlier this week, Gov. LePage said he wasn’t sure if he could do that. He told WVOM-FM radio Tuesday he needed legal advice whether signing would violate his oath to uphold the Constitution.

LePage's argument was that the federal government still considers marijuana illegal. So could he sign a Maine law contrary to federal law? Secretary of State Matt Dunlap said it doesn’t matter because the new law will still take effect in late January, with or without the governor’s signature.

Then on Thursday, LePage told WGAN-FM radio his real issue is about this year’s voting: he said there was a lot of illegal voting, and that he will ask Secretary Dunlap to investigate and make sure everyone who voted has followed Maine law.

Dunlap said the allegation made him “furious,” and said that Maine’s elections have been shown to be clean, that people who vote have met all the requirements — including photo ID for new registrants — and that there is no need to check on those who voted.

LePage had put out a statement before the election, saying college students, in particular, who register to vote in Maine, are required to then get a Maine driver’s license and license their cars here within 30 days. The governor’s press office said Thursday that those are the people he wants to be checked out and that Dunlap needs to enforce that law.

Copyright 2016 WCSH


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