It may surprise some folks on the west coast to learn that California may not be the most liberal state in America when it comes to mandating socialism and political correctness. Yes there may be certain things where California out ranks Maine such as the outrageous ruling banning homeschooling and the coddling of illegal immigrants but in most cases, IE: taxes, BIG government, restriction, the environment, Maine outranks California as being one of the most backward socialist states in the country along with Massachusetts, Vermont, Rhode island and a few other states and it shows greatly.
Maine has the highest tax burden in the country as well as the most bloated government administration. It also has the most restrictive regulations in the nation. As a result Maine is the the meanest towards business in the nation and is last when it comes to job creation and is the 48th poorest state in the country. Only Louisiana and West Virginia rank below Maine and it trails behind states such as Michigan, Alabama, Tennessee, Rhode Island and even Mississippi. I'm not kidding. Even Mississippi, a state that ranks last in health, obesity, infant mortality as a better economy and better climate for jobs than does Maine. In 2006 and 2007, Maine along with Michigan were the only states not affected by natural disasters to lose jobs and go into economic decline. For Maine this is the third time in a row this has happened. It is because of a Man made disaster called Democrat legislation.
While pollution is not a problem as it is in much of Cali and although Illegal immigrants from Canada and refugees from Somalia have swarmed the state, the immigration problem has not been a as big a problem as in California. Still, Maine outranks California in a lot worse ways. So you say, "Hey! I'm from California! I hate it there! I have to pay more fees and taxes than most other places, my job security is bad because the business could go under or I could be replaced by a Mexican and the libs are ruining everything! How can Maine be worse!?" It is worse...
Although California is socialist through and through, California at least has the stamina to take that kind of assault on it's economy. If it were an independent country, California would still be the third largest economy in the world. For example California is home to most of the worlds entertainment industry in Hollywood and La La land. It is home to silicon valley where we get much of our software and technology. In addition, areas such as Petulma, Napa, and Sonoma are where much of America's best agriculture is based. The vineyards based in Napa are home to the worlds best wine. And although the left coast is under Democrat control, there is a large and growing minority of conservative resistance. In the 2004 elections, the Democrats controlled the most populated areas around the coast while Republican conservatives held on to the more rural and unpopulated regions. Still conservatives hold sway in key areas such as Bakersfield, Fresno, (Home to the famous Free Republic Network by the way!) and Stockton. Even parts of Orange, San Bernadino and even San Diego are under sway of the republicans. Of course I just want to point out that despite this many of the republicans are largely moderate and apathetic. Still does give hope.
Maine on the other hand does not have that advantage. Maine is largely a poor rural state. It is one of the most rural in America. The only industries that have existed were the fishing, logging, paper mill and low income tourist industry. All except the later have failed. Agriculture is also failing. Most of Maine's farmlands have been outsourced out of state and many of it's finest crops such as blueberries are rising in cost. The fishing industry has also suffered due to over fishing, mercury run off and regulations. The only professions that have grown in Maine were the medical and administrative. Government jobs have sucked up most of the tax base. The welfare system in Maine is out of control and unreformed. Most people moving into the state are welfare recipients as well as families of disabled children and adults. The average amount of money a single mother with three children makes in a month is $2100 while the rest if they have a job struggle to make anything decent.
Conservatism along with the job market has fled over state lines to places such as New Hampshire where it is reinforcing against the rising tide of liberalism in Concord and the seacoast area. In 2004, Piscatiquas county which consists of Millonocket and Brownville and Washington county, the poorest county in Maine and one of the ten poorest counties in America were the only two counties that voted Republican. Waldo, Aroostok and Somerset counties came close. Even the most rural parts of Maine are home to thousands of Socialist liberals expecting handouts from an already burdened service system. In 2006 48% of Mainers who voted, did so in support of the Tax Payer bill of rights or Tabor amendment. The majority of them lived in the last sustainable pockets of Maine in places such as Portland while 52%, most of whom lived in rural parts of the state opposed it.
Watchdog groups in and out of the state that have tasked the state for burdening the economy have been attacked by state legislature and its supporters as biased and "using republican lenses" But even liberals have opposed Augusta's policies. One leftist even termed Maine's bloated government as Administration land. Maine politicians don't care about taxpayers rights or anyones rights unless they are lazy and unproductive. This is only the beginning. Maine's governor John Baldacci, a hardcore communist and left wing radical has advocated an increase in sales tax as well as mandatory health insurance for businesses and individuals over a certain income. In addition, Baldacci wants more Somali refugees and even more regulations, breaking several promises he has made in the past.
Given the situation it will be interesting to see what will happen in these two states. It is likely that with enough motivation, the silent majority in California will no longer be silent and start it's own counter revolution. Maine on the other hand which has already gone far and beyond the way of the USSR will soon no doubt reach it's final conclusion in a matter of years or even months.