As part of Adas Yoshuron Synagogue's 100th anniversary celebration, Eliot Cutler, a leading figure on the Maine political and business scene, will speak at the synagogue, located at 50 Willow Street in Rockland, on Thursday, September 6 at 7 p.m. The talk is free and open to the public.
Cutler's talk, "21st Century Responsibilities," will deal with what citizenship should mean in America today. Cutler's message in this election year is that with the nation's voters split down the middle and subjected to unprecedented partisan rhetoric, it is important to remember what unites us and what we all need to respect.
Two years ago, Eliot Cutler came within two percentage points and 9,000 votes of becoming Maine's first Jewish governor. If he had won, it's a pretty safe bet that Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert wouldn't be relying on him these days as a frequent target of ridicule. It's also a reasonable assumption that the political divisions in the state wouldn't be as rancorous as they currently are.
In his campaign in 2010 Cutler, who ran as an Independent, appealed across party lines to what he considers the large "middle" that makes up Maine's voters. He believes that many Mainers see things from both sides of the aisle and are both fiscally conservative and socially progressive. That's a vast number of voters who don't necessarily see the issues as a Republican or a Democrat, and seek alternative candidates who reflect their position.
"People are tired of the drivel that's been put out by both political parties," he told a newspaper reporter back then. "I set out to be the candidate with ideas, not rhetoric."
And the political stalemate in Congress and across America has only worsened since Cutler's gubernatorial run. Apart from the ideologues, concerned and frustrated citizens want government to work and actually get things done, and they don't see that happening. Cutler's friend and former Maine governor Angus King is running as an Independent for senator this fall, and is using the same message in his campaign that Cutler did two years ago.
Eliot Cutler grew up in Bangor and attended Harvard and Georgetown Law School. He worked for Sen. Edmund Muskie and in the Carter administration as the Associate Director of the White House Office of Management and Budget. Since then he has had a successful career in law and in business.
With his wealth of experience and clear-headed understanding of the issues facing Maine and the country, we're looking forward to having Eliot Cutler share his insights on September 6 at Adas Yoshuron.
Adas Yoshuron, which is marking its 100th anniversary this year, is an unaffiliated, all-inclusive synagogue serving the Jewish community of midcoast Maine. For more information, please call the synagogue office, 594-4523, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.