By DAVID SHARP, Associated Press
PORTLAND, ME (AP) - Seeking to douse a fire he started by comparing the IRS to the Gestapo, Maine Gov. Paul LePage is issuing a formal apology for his "insensitivity to the word."
LePage hopes his apology, obtained Friday by The Associated Press ahead of its airing on his weekly radio address, will bring to an end the weeklong furor. It started when he described the Internal Revenue Service as the "new Gestapo" while criticizing President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.
LePage says it was "never my intent to insult or to be hurtful to anyone, but rather express what can happen by overreaching government."
LePage has a well-earned reputation for blunt rhetoric, calling protests "idiots," telling the Portland NAACP to "kiss my butt" and even saying he'd tell Obama to "go to hell."
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