At this point in 2010, before he surged past Libby Mitchell to finish, Cutler was polling between 21 and 31 percent, consistently even or ahead with the Democratic opponent. With Michaud receiving endorsements from the President, Hillary Clinton, and the Maine Small Business Coalition, we should assume that the Cutler bump isn’t going to happen.
If Cutler’s going to drop out, it’s going to be on his terms. As he reiterated to us, he has no plans to concede, but reminded what he told voters earlier this summer: On Election Day, if his supporters don’t think he can win, than they have his blessing to vote for someone else.
Imagine if Libby Mitchell, recognizing in the 2010 election’s final weeks that she had no shot, would have thrown her support behind Cutler. That’s the scenario Cutler finds himself in now. The independent has made a show of his equal opposition to the Congressman and Governor, but once you weather that political bluster, it’s easy to see that he—along with his supporters—is far more closely aligned with Michaud than LePage. A last-minute endorsement of the Democrat, replete with the savviness, panache, and strategically worded analysis we can expect from the Harvard lawyer, has the potential to block four more years of potentially devastating policies from another LePage term. It would truly be a selfless act, and could mean a lot to countless Mainers.
OTHER RACES AND REFERENDUM QUESTIONS
Shenna Bellows (D) vs Susan Collins (R)
The race hasn’t been nearly as close as we wish it’d be, but we’re enthusiastically on board with Shenna Bellows for US Senate. The “good kind of libertarian” works tirelessly for labor rights, reforming campaign finance (a/k/a overturning Citizens United), reducing student loan burdens, repealing the Patriot Act, supporting unions and fair wages, and ending the failed war on drugs. Sure, there’ve been a couple of hiccups in her campaign, but her overall assessment of Republican incumbent Susan Collins has been spot-on. It’s time for a change. It’s time to oppose encroaching government surveillance, insist on civil liberties in an increasingly technocratic world, and fight for worker protections at the same time. We admire Bellows’s political courage and believe she’s the right choice.
US House of Representatives
Chellie Pingree (D) vs. Isaac J. Misiuk (R) vs. Richard P. Murphy (I)
Chellie Pingree has been a firm voice for progressive values in the state, and we support her re-election.
Justin Alfond (D) vs. Peter Ignatius Doyle (R) vs. Asher Platts (G)
Much as we would love to see a full-scale revitalization of the Green Party and like and admire Asher Platts (see page 9 for an in-depth look on how sound his ideas truly are), Justin Alfond is an asset to progressives across the state. Platts’s day will come soon, but Alfond is just starting to rankle high-profile conservatives (like Maine Heritage Policy Center’s Matthew Gagnon) to the point that we’re just beginning to see what he can do.
Do you want to ban the use of bait, dogs, or traps in bear hunting except to protect property, public safety, or for research?