Primary Election Results 

On Tuesday, June 14, Maine voters headed to the polls for the primary election. Going into Election Day, there were a handful of hotly contested primary races for Maine’s Senate district seats, including two primaries against incumbent senators, seven open races resulting from term limits, and the decision by five senators not to run again. Below are the unofficial results of some of the key Senate races.

In Portland, there were two, three-way Democratic primaries in Senate Districts 27 and 28. In Senate District 27, Representative Ben Chipman defeated Representative Diane Russell and Dr. Charles Radis. Representative Chipman will face Republican Mark Lockman and Green Party Candidate Seth Baker in November. In Senate District 28, Representative Mark Dion defeated Portland City Councilor Jill Duson and former Representative Ann Peoples. Representative Dion will face Republican Karen Usher in November.

In Saco, in Senate District 31, incumbent Representative Justin Chenette defeated incumbent Representative Barry Hobbins, who has served on and off in the Legislature for over 40 years. Representative Chenette will face Republican William Gombar in the fall. Next door in Biddeford, in Senate District 32, incumbent Senator Susan Deschambault easily defeated Joanne Twomey. Senator Deschambault will face Republican Stephen Martin in November, which is a repeat face-off from the special election held in March to fill a vacancy caused by the resignation of former Senator David Dutremble.

In Washington Counties’ Senate District 6, incumbent House Republican Joyce Maker defeated primary opponent William Howard, and will face Rock Alley in November. In Senate District 7, around the Ellsworth area, Moira O’Neill defeated former legislator Theodore Koffman in the Democratic primary and will face incumbent Republican Senator Brian Langley in the fall.

In the Senate District 23 race that includes the Topsham, Bath, and Bowdoinham areas; Republican incumbent Senator Linda Baker was narrowly defeated by her primary opponent, Guy Lebida. Mr. Lebida will face Democrat Eloise Vitelli in November.

In Senate District 14 that includes the Gardiner, Hallowell, and Winthrop areas, Democrat Shenna Bellows defeated her primary opponent Terry Berry, and Republican Bryan Cutchen defeated his primary opponent Maureen Blanchard. Shenna Bellows and Bryan Cutchen will face each other and Independent Joe Pietroski in November.

Finally, in Senate District 2, Southern Aroostook and Northern Penobscot counties, Representative Ricky Long and his opponent Emily Smith are still locked in a too-close-to-call race, with 90% of precincts reporting as of press time.

Maine Ethics Commissioner Gives Overview of Campaign Finance Laws in Advance of Fall Election Season

On June 16, 2016, in advance of the fall candidate elections and ballot questions, the Executive Director of the Maine Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices Jonathan Wayne provided an educational overview of recent changes to Maine election law and campaign finance rules primarily to trade association leaders who participate in the election process. Attending from Pierce Atwood were Andrea Maker, Elizabeth Frazier, and Megan Sanborn. The overview included an explanation of a new rule requiring independent expenditures to state the names of the top three donors to the organization making the expenditure, and a review of the law prohibiting clean election candidates from establishing or participating as decision-makers in their own leadership PACs. The Maine Society of Association Executives hosted the well-attended event at Maine Motor Transport in Augusta.