Vetoes, bonds and late LePage surprises

The Legislature is back in Augusta on Wednesday for what’s set to be the last official day of the 2017 session.

They’re mostly back to vote on overriding 27 vetoes from Gov. Paul LePage, including bills that would set long-term solar policy, increase Maine’s tobacco-buying age to 21 and prohibit handheld cellphone use while driving.

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Single-Payer Healthcare = Universal Coverage

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Meanwhile, proponents of a single-payer healthcare plan are organizing to urge Congress not only to stop the effort to repeal Obamacare, but to pass a bill that would guarantee Medicare for all. On Tuesday, former Vice President Al Gore became the latest prominent Democrat to speak in favor of single payer.

Al Gore: “The private sector has not shown any ability to provide a good, accessible, affordable healthcare for all. I believe, for example, we ought to have a single-payer healthcare plan.”

We’ll have more on the Republicans’ failed push on healthcare and the growing fight for single payer after headlines.

Single-payer healthcare is a healthcare system in which the state, financed by taxes, covers basic healthcare costs for all residents regardless of income, occupation, or health status. “Single-payer” describes the mechanism by which healthcare is paid for by a single public authority, not the type of delivery or for whom physicians work. In contrast, multi-payer healthcare uses a mixed public-private system.

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Trump to “Let Obamacare Fail” After Republicans Fail on Health Bill. (Fuckin’ right on.)

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President Donald Trump said Tuesday he plans to “let Obamacare fail,” after Senate Republican leaders failed in a bid to repeal parts of the Affordable Care Act without a replacement in place. The move was opposed by four Republicans, including three women—Senators Susan Collins, Shelley Moore Capito and Lisa Murkowski, who along with Rob Portman said the effort would deprive millions of Americans of health insurance. All three Republican women were left out of a Senate working group comprised of 13 white men that drafted the initial healthcare bill. On Tuesday, President Trump suggested he might let insurance markets created under Obamacare go under, and then try to work with Democrats on a rescue.

Senator John McCain faces brain cancer; may the Source be with you, John.

Analysis: Warrior faces a new battle

By James Cook, BBC North America correspondent

John McCain is known in Washington as a tough, independent-minded senator – a warrior who is now facing another battle against cancer.

He earned his reputation the hard way, being shot down as a US Navy pilot over Vietnam where he was held as a prisoner of war for more than five years, including two in solitary confinement.

Repeatedly beaten and tortured, Mr McCain was never again able to raise his arms above his head.

During the most recent presidential election campaign, Donald Trump belittled the senator as “not a war hero” saying “I like people who weren’t captured”.

Many Americans were horrified.

Mr McCain may have annoyed many Republicans by arguing for reforms to campaign finance and immigration laws.

He may have irritated opponents of America’s many wars with his forceful arguments in favour of the projection of US military might.

But this country reveres its veterans. The attacks on John McCain’s personal sacrifice were roundly condemned then – and millions of Americans will be praying for his recovery now.

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An American woman whose $30,000 wedding was cancelled invites the homeless to her wedding banquet instead. Right on.

The wedding reception of Sarah Cummins, 25, had been booked at the plush Ritz Charles in Carmel, Indiana, and was non-refundable.

So she contacted homeless shelters in the area and guests were bussed in for Saturday’s 170-seat dinner.

Ms Cummins called off the wedding but has not given the reasons.

She told the Indy Star: “It was really devastating, I called everyone, cancelled, apologised, cried, called vendors, cried some more and then I started feeling really sick about just throwing away all the food I ordered for the reception.”

She had been due to marry Logan Araujo, who had footed the largest part of the bill.

Ms Cummins said her ex-fiance, whose mother died recently, had agreed to the solution.

Mr Araujo told the Indy Star: “I’m happy through my grief and also Sarah’s that she was able to make a selfless and very thoughtful decision in such a hard time.”

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Ms Cummins worked with the Ritz Charles’ wedding planner on the event and then contacted homeless shelters, arranging for buses to pick up the new guests.

Local business helped to donate suits and dresses for the reception, Associated Press reported.

The agency quoted one of the attendees, Charlie Allen, as saying: “I didn’t have a sport coat. I think I look pretty nice in it. For a lot of us, this is a good time to show us what we can have. Or to remind us what we had.”

Some of Ms Cummins’ family joined her at the event, along with three bridesmaids.

The menu included chicken breast with artichokes and Chardonnay cream sauce, roasted garlic bruschetta and, of course, wedding cake.

Ms Cummins was scheduled to leave for what was supposed to have been her honeymoon – taking her mother instead of Mr Araujo – in the Dominican Republic on Sunday.