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At Party's 'Virtual Rally' Mills Urges Democrats To Unify At The Ballot Box

Robert F. Bukaty
Associated Press
Maine Gov. Janet Mills at a press event at the State House, Jan. 7, 2020

Maine Gov. Janet Mills says elections are more important than ever now that a pandemic threatens the state's economy and habits. Mills spoke Sunday at a "virtual rally" held by Maine Democrats. She used the opportunity to take issue with former Gov. Paul LePage, a Republican, and some of his policies.

"Remember  how the previous administration decimated the public health system? Cut the Department of Education and other vital services?" Mills said. "Remember how the previous governor left town and went golfing in Florida every time things got tough?"

Mills also acknowledged protests within the state held against police brutality following the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer.

In addition, the governor addressed the threat of the new coronavirus and criticism of the state's efforts to address the issue.

"But today we know there's no COVID-19 playbook, no pandemic manual. But we see in other states and our nation's capital what happens when we let hatred and mockery take charge," Mills said. "The failure of Republican leadership is clearer now than ever before."

The rally also featured a statement from Vice President Joe Biden, and video appearances by Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren.

The 2020 state Democratic Party convention was supposed to be held over the weekend in Bangor but was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Irwin Gratz contributed to this report.