Maine's health and human services commissioner steps down.

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) - Maine's health and human services commissioner, who led sweeping welfare reform, is stepping down from her position. GOP Gov. Paul LePage announced Wednesday that Commissioner Mary Mayhew will be leaving his administration, effective Friday. Mayhew's next steps are unclear, though she has been mentioned as a potential gubernatorial candidate in 2018. LePage said Mayhew handled pushback from special interest groups, liberal legislators and the media with grit and grace. LePage appointed Mayhew in 2011 and says she brought accountability and fiscal responsibility to Maine's welfare system. Mayhew was a Democrat when she was appointed; she's now a Republican. Mayhew led efforts to combat welfare fraud and focusing spending on at-risk groups like the elderly and disabled. LePage said an acting commissioner of the department will be named later this week.