SCARBOROUGH – As Governor Janet Mills’ heavy restrictions on many sectors of the economy near the start of their third month, it’s hard to keep track of the flood of Maine businesses announcing they are permanently closing. But one Maine State Representative took to his personal Facebook page to issue a mocking comment about a restaurant closing in a town near him.
The post didn’t sit well with readers of Maine Examiner, who sent screenshots to us, outraged that the Democrat politician would be so callous as dozens more Mainers faced the sudden loss of their jobs, but a review of Rep. Babine’s post revealed he added even more commentary to the post that outraged readers.
On May 4th, the Tilted Kilt Pub and Eatery in South Portland posted, “Due to the governor’s executive order to keep restaurants closed in the state, we’ve unfortunately made the painful decision to permanently close our doors. Thank you everyone for a great 5 years!”
But a review of the Tilted Kilt’s Facebook page shows a lot of activity at the eatery in the months leading up to Governor Mills’ stay at home order, including events and musical entertainment.
In the comments section of his post, Babine defended his comment to someone who told him he was “dismissing people’s lives, investments and livelihoods!!”
Babine’s response was that the Tilted Kilt had gone downhill six months after they opened so he was dismissing their explanation.
But according to the Tilted Kilt they had been open for five years.
Babine also appeared to dismiss those who disagreed with his post about the Tilted Kilt with a post the following day, “Woke up to a string of messenger texts – I guess I lost the Titled Kilt vote. Happy Cinco de Mayo and Taco Tuesday Day.”
The day before his controversial comment about the Tilted Kilt, Babine also took a shot at Rick Savage and Sunday River Brewing Company, apparently for staying open in defiance of Governor Mills’ order.
“I love my weekly Political Brew. LOL – political loser of the week – Sunday River Brewing co-owner. #YaThink” posted Rep. Babine.
The posts on concurrent days put Rep. Babine in the unusual position of mocking both a business fighting to stay open and defying Governor Mills and a business obeying Governor Mills and closing their doors.
Rep. Babine is serving his first term in the Maine House of Representatives. He was appointed by Speaker Sara Gideon to the legislature’s committee that oversees business, commerce and economic development.
As of May 7th at 7:00 pm, Rep. Babine’s posts about the Tilted Kilt closure were still visible on his Facebook page.