A GOP mayor in Maine was forced to resign after his girlfriend revealed text messages and emails he had sent her, reports TPM.
According to The Sun Journal, Shane Bouchard, the mayor of Lewiston, Maine, referred to elderly black people as “antique farm equipment” in text messages he sent to his girlfriend Heather Berube Everly.
“All my jokes are quite racist lol,” Bouchard said before adding, “What do you call two old black people sitting on your front lawn?”
“Antique farm equipment,” he answered.
“Yikes,” Everly texted back.
There were other problematic texts, and at one point Bouchard seemed to suggest that he was “sexist.” He asked his girlfriend if she knew what would make his day better, and then added: “Do you know a set of 20-year-old blonde twins?”
Then, later, he wrote during the conversation that he could weigh in more options.
“Could be better too. Still holding out for twins,” he said, before adding, “Or an overweight brunette. Lol.”
Speaking to Maine’s CBS affiliate, Bouchard said that he doesn’t consider himself to be a “perfect person.” He said that he makes jokes occasionally and sometimes they are not to everyone’s taste.
“In this political climate where the media does not discriminate between facts and rumors, it is hard to be a public figure. I am not a perfect person. I have made many mistakes in my past. I have also, in the past been the victim of some very damaging rumors,” he told WGME.
Bouchard’s resignation comes on the heels of last week’s public testimony by the same woman, Heather Berube Everly, at the Lewiston City Council. Everly said that she provided Bouchard with internal documents from his opponent Ben Chin’s campaign, where she was working at the time. The documents leaked by Everly later appeared in a website called the Maine Examiner, which was revealed to be run by an operative of the Maine Republican Party.
Shane Bouchard resigns as Mayor of Lewiston. pic.twitter.com/tyfwQXVkQw
— CBS 13 News (@WGME) March 8, 2019
Bouchard admitted that he had received the emails from Everly but denied forwarding the emails to the Maine Republican Party. At the time of writing, local investigators are examining the emails and trying to find out whether Bouchard was responsible for its appearance on the aforementioned website.
The leaked emails sought to paint Bouchard’s Democratic opponent, Ben Chin, in a negative light. Chin reportedly referred to some voters as “a**holes” and opposed the merger of two towns because it would lead to spending cuts.