Elections

Recent Stories

Portland primary election challenges lead to proposed changes in campaign law

Rep. Diane Russell, at right, sits with her attorney, Kate Knox, during a meeting Wednesday of the Maine Ethics Commission. Russell was fined $500 for failing to disclose an in-kind donation of an email list that she made to her campaign.

The Maine Ethics Commission has fined losing Senate candidate Rep. Diane Russell $500 for failing to disclose her contribution to her Senate campaign of a valuable email list, closing the books on a series of ethics complaints generated by the recent Portland Democratic Senate primary. But the complaints — two against Russell and one against primary winner Rep. Ben Chipman — may end up having a broader effect on Maine campaign-finance law and how elections are run. Continue Reading →

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Complaint alleges Rep. Russell’s PAC was “money mill” for her

Rep. Diane Russell, D-Portland.

A Portland resident has filed a complaint with the state ethics commission alleging that the PAC controlled by Diane Russell, a candidate for the state senate and a current member of the House, may have made fraudulent campaign finance filings. “If people know the right questions to ask then the voters can be more informed,” said Michael Hiltz, who filed the ethics complaint against the PAC controlled by Russell. Continue Reading →

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Maine Democrats play middleman between wealthy Clinton donors and national party

Hillary Clinton in Portland, Maine, Sept. 2015

Wealthy donors from across the country have sent nearly $100,000 to the Maine Democratic Party as part of a coordinated fundraising program called the Hillary Victory Fund. But not all of that money is staying in the state: 40 percent of it has already been transferred to the Democratic National Committee. Continue Reading →

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LePage wants to replace secretary of state with lieutenant governor

Gov. Paul LePage

Gov. Paul LePage plans to submit legislation this session that would create the state’s first lieutenant governor, do away with the secretary of state position and give the power to appoint the attorney general and treasurer to the governor. Continue Reading →

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Ethics board: change law that allowed legislator to pay himself from his PAC

Maine Statehouse, Photo John Christie

Maine’s ethics agency has proposed legislation that would tighten up lax regulations that allowed a Sanford legislator to pay himself and family members from political action committee funds he controlled.

Commission staff proposed the change in response to a story published in October by the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting. Continue Reading →

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Poll news is no news

As voters surely saw this past campaign season, there were lots of polls. They showed how one candidate was winning or another.

But polls can be wrong, and they are often abused by political operatives who want to promote candidates.

Read John Christie’s latest “Who Ya Kidding” to see how it all works. Continue Reading →

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As election neared, millions poured into state

Captura de pantalla 2014-11-04 a la(s) 5.12.58 PM

In the last 13 days before Election Day, state campaign finance records show millions of dollars coming in, millions going out – much of it for the heated race for governor. Use our interactive charts to explore the last-minute contributions and expenditures in Maine’s state Nov. 4 election. Continue Reading →

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The ‘gatekeepers’: Ten wealthy Mainers giving $3.95 million to this election

Sydney Roberts Rockefeller

The top 10 individual Maine donors to state and national political campaigns represent just .001 percent of Maine’s adult population of about one million.

But that minuscule percentage represents 27.3 per cent of all donations to candidates, parties and causes from contributors with a Maine address. Continue Reading →

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Sanford senator used PAC money to pay himself and family $17,000

Sen. John Tuttle, Jr., (D) Sanford.  Photo:  Maine Senate Democrats

A veteran state legislator has used a campaign fund designed to help other Democratic candidates run for office to buy tires, pay for car repairs, reimburse himself for travel and pay his wife and daughter for computer services and keeping his books. Continue Reading →

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