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Michaud Denies Connection with Guy Dufault (posted June 18, 2006)

Republican gubernatorial candidate Dennis Michaud has denied that he talked with controversial Democratic consultant Guy Dufault about his own campaign or that he has used campaign signs purchased through Checkmate, a sign company run by Dufault's son. Appearing on the WJAR-TV show "10 News Conference" with Jim Taricani, Michaud said he had no contact with Dufault or union leaders upset with Governor Don Carcieri prior to his announcement speech.

In criticizing the governor, Michaud complained that Carcieri "can't grasp complex issues". The governor does not understand economic development and is too focused on taxes as a way to stimulate the economy, the challenger said. When asked if he was a millionaire, Michaud said that he was, but noted "I am not going to buy the election. Any dope can write a check."

Responding to Carcieri's claim that Michaud was a tool of organized labor and Beacon Mutual Company, Michaud said the governor's statement on him and Beacon was "ridiculous" and that the governor's administration had recommended him for a consulting position with Beacon. Michaud complained about what he said was Carcieri's confrontational style with unions. "Labor was prepared to give more" on health care co-pays, Michaud noted, than what the governor got.