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Politics

LePage Blasts Veto Override of Bill Allowing Police to Use Red Emergency Lights

AUGUSTA, Maine - Gov. Paul LePage is blasting state lawmakers for overriding his veto of a bill that allows police departments to use red emergency lights on their vehicles.

Speaking on Portland radio station WGAN Thursday, the governor said the bill is dangerous because motorists are less likely to pull over for red lights than blue ones. The governor based his assertion on his observations while riding in his executive protection vehicle.

But the bill was backed by Republicans, Democrats and several law enforcement agencies, including the Maine Chiefs of Police. They cited studies finding that red lights are more visible than blue ones during daylight hours while the opposite is true at night time.

Nevertheless, LePage told WGAN that the change will quote "kill people" and he called the lawmaker who sponsored the bill a "bonehead."

The bill was sponsored Republican Matt Harrington, of Sanford. The House and Senate voted overwhelming to override the governor and the bill is now law.