“I do not believe it is appropriate for Rep. Cornell du Houx to include in his state-paid newsletter the personal situation he went through over the last several months,” wrote Heather J.R. Priest, Clerk for the Maine House of Representatives in an email response to Rep. Cornell du Houx’s request.
Rep Cornell du Houx, requested permission to include a public statement about a recent matter that had been made public when the Bangor Daily News published an article about the matter. Normally the press stays away from personal issues of this order but because Cornell du Houx is a public official they made the issue public. Hence the notion that the issue was purely personal cannot be used as an excess for not allowing Rep. Cornell du Houx the freedom to write about the issue in his letter.
Furthermore according to Priest House Speaker Bob Nutting did not approve of Rep. Cornell du Houx’s request. “he, too, agrees that it is not appropriate,” wrote Priest.
This is the factual statement that Rep. Cornell du Houx requested permission to use in his newsletter:
“Recently there were sensationalized press reports throughout the state concerning me. I regret any distress this may have caused you. The complaint was withdrawn and dismissed by the court. The state police never saw the need to interview me, and they stopped the investigation. The issue is officially closed. I want to thank everyone for the overwhelming support that I received.”
Because both parties involved in the issue were and are State Representatives which automatically put the issue into the public realm.
Even the following suggested language for the newsletter from the Democratic House office was rejected by the Clerk and the Republican House Speaker, Bob Nutting: “I want to thank everyone in the community who has offered support over the past few months during a very public and challenging time for me personally. The matter has been resolved, and I’m looking forward to putting it behind me and moving forward with my life. Your messages of support were especially helpful, and I’ve never been prouder to represent and defend our community in Augusta.”
“He has to avoid the recent personal matter,” concluded Priest.
Emails from the Democratic House office to and from Rep. Cornell du Houx were obtained for the accuracy of this report.
Background about the issue: A temporary protection order against Rep. Alex Cornell du Houx by Rep. Herbig was dismissed and withdrawn from the court on May 14, 2012. The agreement between the two Representatives was finalized on the 11th at 11:30- at night. The police probe ended that afternoon before any agreement was signed. Cornell du Houx was cleared, as stated in a PPH report last May.