Steve Mistler

Chief Political Correspondent and State House Bureau Chief

Steve has been a journalist for nearly two decades, specializing in the coverage of politics and state government. His work has been recognized by the Maine Press Association and the New England Newspaper and Press Association for investigative projects and accountability journalism. He was named the MPA’s Journalist of the Year in 2011 for his coverage of municipal government for The Forecaster in Falmouth and, later, for his coverage of state government for the Sun Journal in Lewiston.

Steve became the state house bureau chief for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram in 2012. After four years with Maine’s largest daily newspaper, Steve made the leap to radio journalism, joining Maine Public in May 2016.

Steve is married with one child and has two crazy dogs. His family lives in Brunswick.

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Maine Senate President Mike Thibodeau says he’s confident that a state agency responsible for mapping services is fully funded, countering claims from the LePage administration that the recently passed state budget mistakenly zeroed out its state allocation.

LePage’s finance department notified lawmakers earlier this week that the budget contained a mistake that stripped the Maine Office of Geographic Information Systems and the Library of Geographic Information.

A committee convened by the Maine Department of Public Safety says it doesn’t believe that Maine needs to set a limit for determining whether a motorist is impaired by marijuana. The recommendation is likely to stir debate among law enforcement officials and legislators as implementation of the voter-approved recreational marijuana law plods forward.

The Legislature was in session Wednesday, reviewing vetoes issued by Gov. Paul LePage. Lawmakers overrode LePage’s effort to block a bill that could expand access to opioid addiction treatment, and sustained his veto of a bill that would ban motorists from using hand-held devices while driving.

Bobby Caina Calvan / Associated Press

A bill prohibiting Mainers below age 21 from purchasing tobacco products will soon become law.

The Senate voted 29-5 and the House voted 90-44 to override Gov. Paul LePage’s veto of the proposal, which supporters say will lower smoking rates and smoking-related deaths.

Republican state Sen. Eric Brakey warned that passing the bill would force young adults to seek to purchase the products illegally.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

Republican Gov. Paul LePage took his campaign against U.S. Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Angus King, an independent, to a national audience, furthering speculation about his future political ambitions.

Darron Cummings / Associated Press/file

Secretary of State Matt Dunlap says he’s refusing a second request by the Trump administration’s election fraud commission to turn over Maine voters’ personal information.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

Two months after ruling out a bid for the U.S. Senate, Gov. Paul LePage suggested Thursday that there's a possibility he may challenge independent U.S. Sen. Angus King next year.

The Republican governor also acknowledged that he's being pressured to run by the Trump administration.

LePage told Portland radio station WGAN that he may reconsider if Auburn state Sen. Eric Brakey's Senate bid doesn't gain traction.

Darron Cummings / Associated Press

Secretary of State Matt Dunlap says President Donald Trump’s controversial voter fraud commission should make sure ballot security doesn’t discourage voter participation.

Dunlap is one of four Democrats on a 12-member panel that critics say is engineered toward nationalizing Republican voter suppression efforts. The commission met for the first time at the White House Wednesday, and Dunlap used his opening remarks to offer some advice: to address claims of voter fraud.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

Three of the four political action committees supporting a controversial casino campaign have failed to meet Monday's deadline to file updated finance reports with the state. 

Jim Boyle, a former state senator from Gorham, has announced his candidacy for governor.

Boyle served one term in the Maine Senate. Now he’s the sixth Democrat to jump into a race that has 11 candidates so far.

Boyle lives in Gorham and runs an environmental consulting company in Westbrook.

In the press release announcing his candidacy, Boyle depicted a Maine economy that’s leaving some behind and a dysfunctional state government.

Joel Page / Associated Press/file

A slow response to subpoenas and disputes over documents could delay the investigation into the controversial campaign seeking to convince voters to support a casino in York County.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

Two-time former Democratic House Speaker Mark Eves formally launched his bid to become Maine's next governor during a campaign event at his home in North Berwick Thursday night.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press/file

Former Maine Democratic House Speaker Mark Eves is expected to launch his anticipated run for governor later today. 

In this June 17, 2015, file photo, marijuana plants grow at LifeLine Labs in Cottage Grove, Minn.
AP Photo/Jim Mone, File

The legislative committee implementing Maine’s recreational marijuana law is ramping up efforts to allow for the commercial sale of a drug now legal in eight states. Some hope the retail system will be up and running a year from now, but lawmakers and advocates warn that it could take longer.

The Marijuana Legalization Implementation Committee has held regular meetings since February.

And with discussions like this one, it’s no small wonder why lobbyists are cramming the hearing rooms.

Robert F. Bukaty / Associated Press

Gov. Paul LePage suggested Thursday that his relationship with the media has deteriorated to the point that he devises ways to mislead reporters.