Maine House speaker strips committee assignment of indicted Democrat

AUGUSTA — House Speaker Rachel Talbot Ross on Thursday removed a Democratic congressman accused of counterfeiting from his only committee duty.

Talbot Ross, D-Portland,’s decision to remove Rep. Clinton E. Collamore Sr., D-Waldoboro, from the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee was announced Thursday in a written notice to the House of Representatives.

Rep. Clinton Collamore

“Pursuant to my authority under House Rule 201.1(I)(a) and Common Rule 371, I revoke the appointment of Representative Clinton E. Collamore, Sr. from Waldoboro of the Joint Standing Committee on Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, effective immediately,” Ross wrote.

The notice was not discussed at the House level, but the move further sidelines the Democratic lawmaker, who has already been removed from the Representative Democrats’ website, and increases pressure on him to give up his seat.

Collamore has not attended a legislative session since his indictment in December on multiple charges of aggravated forgery, unsworn forgery and violations of the Clean Election Act, according to the indictment filed Dec. 15 in Lincoln County Superior Court. A court case has not yet been scheduled.

Talbot Ross has publicly urged Collamore, 62, to step down from his seat in District 45, which represents Bremen, Friendship, Waldoboro and Washington. She declined to discuss her decision to remove Collamore from the IFW committee before Tuesday’s meeting.

Democratic House Speaker Mo Terry, D-Gorham declined to speak about Talbot Ross’ decision. Terry said she had no communication with Collamore as to whether he was stepping down.

Staffers from the Maine Commission on Governmental Ethics found that Collamore forged several signatures needed to access public funds for his campaign. He received more than $14,000 from the Maine Clean Elections Fund.

Collamore’s 42-page indictment alleges he committed 20 counts of aggravated forgery, a Class B felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine; 11 cases of unsworn forgery (Class D); and a count of violation of Maine’s Clean Election Act (Class E).

When reached Thursday, Collamore said he was unable to discuss calls for his resignation or removal from the committee.

“I’m driving,” Collamore said. “You have to call me later.”

Collamore’s attorney, Richard Elliott, was not immediately available at his Boothbay law office.

This story will be updated

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