Paul Lepage speaks before Massachusetts Republicans

The Massachusetts Republican Assembly, before which Maine Gov. Le Page spoke, is on the conservative end of the political spectrum.

Credit: Isaiah Thompson | WGBH News

Maine's LePage Wants Medicaid Work Requirement, Says ISIS Is Everywhere – Blames Canada

March 20, 2017

[Listen to audio of LePage's speech]

Paul Lepage, the outspoken and sometimes controversial Republican governor of Maine, was the guest of honor at a Massachusetts GOP gathering this weekend. Maine's governor used the appearance to voice his support for a contentious proposal to change the federal Medicaid program — and told guests that ISIS, or the Islamic State, is operating, as one questioner put it, in "every state."

In a wide-ranging speech Sunday before the Massachusetts Republican Assembly, Maine governor Lepage said he wants to see GOP efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act include a work requirement for recipients of Medicaid, the federal program that provides health care to low-income Americans. 

"The biggest single thing that I've been requesting from Medicaid, is work rules, work requirements," LePage said. "If you're an able-bodied American, you need to go to work, it's that simple."
 
LePage's comments come after a House Republicans supported a requirement  that all "able-bodied" adults hold a job to qualify for medicaid. 
 
LePage also addressed guests' concerns over terrorism in the United States. 
 
"We've been told that ISIS is in every state in our country," said one guest. 
 
"Believe it," said LePage. "It is true [...] I'm telling you, it's a real problem." 
 
LePage then called out Canada's government, apparently in relation to the question about terrorism.
 
"Unfortunately, with the change in government in Canada, [Prime Minister] Trudeau's been very very liberal and he's allowing them in, and there are people in this world that want to hurt us. It's that simple. So yes ma'am,  I would believe it, because we're seeing it."
 
 


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