Maine Gov. Paul LePage made a surprise visit to a Martin Luther King Day event today despite his earlier refusal to attend an event hosted by the NAACP and his assertion that they can “kiss my butt.”Last week, leaders of the NAACP had criticized LePage’s decision to skip multiple events organized by the group, saying it was part of a larger pattern. In response LePage called them a “special interest” and said: “Tell them to kiss my butt. If they want, they can look at my family picture. My son happens to be black, so they can do whatever they’d like about it.”
But today, the Portland Press Herald reports, he showed up at a Waterville breakfast in honor of MLK. “Dr. King is someone who spent and ultimately gave his life making sure that people got a fair shake regardless of race,” he said. “We have come far through the years, but the journey continues to make Dr. King’s dreams a reality. I urge all Mainers to work as one for a better life for all.”
LePage previously caused a flap during his campaign when he said that if elected he would tell President Obama to “go to hell.”
Editor’s Note: This post has been revised since it was first published.