Will more debates wake up a torpid Maine governor’s race?
Good morning from Augusta. Maine’s gubernatorial candidates will be spending a lot of time together on Wednesday and Thursday with four forums — two in southern Maine today and two more tomorrow.
Just about all of the Maine political observers we’ve talked to about the race to replace Gov. Paul LePage have found it to be a sleepy one. The candidates aren’t known as bomb-throwers and the major issues in the campaign so far have been raised by outside groups.
There has been more comity than conflict so far, but familiarity could breed contempt. As we draft today’s Daily Brief, the candidates are debating before members of the Portland Regional Chamber of Commerce in Portland.
They’ll stay in the area for a debate in Westbrook moderated by conservative radio host Ray Richardson of WLOB, which will air the debate live and stream it online. Finally, they will meet again for a debate on Thursday morning before a Waterville-area business group and a forum on the fishing industry in Rockland tomorrow.
Their first debate — last month in Lewiston — was an agreeable affair where LePage took more heat than anyone else. He was hit by Attorney General Janet Mills, the Democratic nominee and the two independents, State Treasurer Terry Hayes and consultant Alan Caron.
Shawn Moody, the Republican nominee who is largely looking to take up LePage’s mantle with many of the governor’s key advisers on his campaign, was even praised by all three candidates for some of his business practices at his chain of collision centers.