Independent candidate for governor Eliot Cutler appeared Tuesday morning on “The Daily Rundown with Chuck Todd,” a political news program on MSNBC, to talk about his race against incumbent Gov. Paul LePage and Democrat Mike Michaud.
Cutler said he has no doubt that LePage will be voted out in November but said he – not Michaud – is better suited to lead Maine.
“I’m not a spoiler,” Cutler told Todd. “I’m a choice.”
“Gov. LePage is going to be shown the door. There is not any question about that. The real question for Maine voters is whether they want to replace him with someone who can exercise the bold leadership that is going to turn Maine around,” he said.
Cutler appeared in the MSNBC studio in Washington, D.C. for Tuesday’s roughly 6-minute segment. Michaud spoke with Todd about the race last week.
It’s not clear whether LePage will be asked to participate or not. His senior campaign adviser, Brent Littlefield, would not answer when asked whether LePage had been invited.
“While they are playing to national liberal ideologues based in Washington, Governor LePage is helping create jobs in Maine,” Littlefield said in an email.
During Cutler’s interview, Todd asked the candidate why he thinks an independent was the best choice to be Maine’s next governor.
“The two parties have moved to the left and the to the right,” he said. “Most legislators in the state of Maine are looking for leadership in the middle. They would like to succeed. They would like to get things done.”
Cutler criticized Michaud for lacking the necessary experience, for “demonstrating inconsistent principles,” and for his “extreme reliance on special interest money.”
The brief segment was light on specifics but Cutler did plug his tax reform plan and was asked whether he supported the federal education standards know n as Common Core.
“I’m strongly for Common Core,” he said, explaining that is was developed “not by politicians but by educators.”
“We need to reintroduce rigor and standards into education .. that enable us to compete with (the world),” he added.
At the close of the interview, Todd seemed to offer an endorsement of Cutler.
“I’ve been waiting for more independents like you to show up,” the political host said.
The entire interview can be seen here: