- Associated Press - Friday, September 19, 2014

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Maine Republicans criticized Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mike Michaud on Friday for retweeting a video featuring a rap song with a lewd reference to Republican Sen. Susan Collins.

The roughly five-minute video that takes a behind-the-scenes look at Michaud’s campaign was made by a Maine multimedia production company. His campaign did not pay for or control the contents of the video, his spokesman said.

Over the video, a rap song plays. It lyrics include the line: “I’m the King of Maine. I’ve got Susan Collins giving everyone brain,” a reference to oral sex.

Michaud’s campaign wasn’t immediately aware of the lyric’s meaning, his spokesman Matt McTighe said.

Republicans called the video “absolutely appalling and completely inexcusable.”

“Michaud must denounce this video, have it immediately taken down, and offer a sincere apology to Senator Collins and all Maine women for his endorsement of such a tasteless depiction of one of America’s most prominent women,” Maine Republican Party spokeswoman Deborah Sanderson said in a statement.

Michaud’s campaign said Friday that it asked the Bangor Daily News and the production company to take the video down when it was made aware of the lyrics’ meaning. It said Republicans were trying to mislead voters by accusing the Democrat of producing the video.

“This is just dirty politics from the GOP,” Michaud spokeswoman Lizzy Reinholt said. “This is the type of politics that voters are tired of. Let’s focus on the issues rather than trying to spread lies about opponents.”

A spokesman for Collins’ re-election campaign declined to comment.

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