Press release

Boothbay Region Democrats hold 2020 election kick-off meeting

Mon, 02/17/2020 - 3:00pm

An enthusiastic crowd of 40 Democrats gathered at the 2020 Election Kick-Off meeting on February 9 at Ragsdale Studio in Boothbay. Attendees from Boothbay Harbor, Boothbay, Southport and Edgecomb heard presentations from Maine House Representatives Holly Stover and Chloe Maxmin; Geoff Bates from the Lincoln County Democratic Committee also spoke to the group. In addition, attendees learned about the very important election-year events coming next month: the Maine Presidential Primary on March 3, and the Democratic Caucuses on March 8.

Holly Stover, representing House District 89, described her first year as a member of the Maine Legislature and the many accomplishments of the Legislature working with Governor Janet Mills.

Holly was a lead sponsor of a bill to ban single-use plastic bags at retail stores, which will take effect on Earth Day, April 22, 2020. Consumers and retail groups (including Reny’s!) have supported efforts to eliminate plastic bags as a common-sense way to discourage wastefulness and prevent windswept plastic litter. Holly also is deeply involved with health and welfare issues for Maine families. She supports better funding for trade schools and community colleges, and has worked with local groups to improve transportation options for people who need rides that fall outside of the transportation opportunities provided by MaineCare. Holly will seek re-election in November to retain her seat in the House.

Chloe Maxmin was the first Democrat ever elected to represent District 88 in the Maine Legislature. A passionate climate activist for years, Chloe sponsored the “Green New Deal” bill for Maine that has been influential in shaping the discussion of climate change in the state. She’s especially concerned about the needs of rural communities, which often feel left behind in the political process. Such issues as broadband access and transportation, as well as the economic impacts of climate change, are extremely important for residents of rural areas such as Lincoln County. In November, Chloe will seek election as the Democratic candidate for District 13 in the State Senate, a position currently held by Republican Dana Dow.

Lincoln County Democratic Committee (LCDC) is committed to bringing positive change and doing it with honesty and integrity. Geoff Bates, a member of the LCDC Executive Committee, spoke to the gathering to explain the organization’s relationship with the municipal Democratic Committees of Lincoln County. LCDC serves as an “umbrella” organization that supports our regional candidates and town Democratic committees through such activities as coordinating volunteers for canvassing and phone banks. LCDC will partner with Boothbay Region Democrats to host a Southwestern-Style Bean Supper on Saturday, March 21, at the American Legion Hall in Boothbay. This event will celebrate the culture of our neighbors to the south, and show support of our local Democratic organizations, with a simple supper and classical guitar performance by Mexican-born musician Jeffrey Rojo. FMI: Contact Geoff Bates at 207-644-8776 or gbbates@gmail.com

One of the most important and animated discussions at the meeting centered around the coming Maine Presidential Primary on March 3 and the Maine Democratic Caucuses on March 8. Many attendees expressed some confusion about why Maine has both a Primary and a Caucus this spring. The short answer is that the Primary focuses on Presidential candidates, while the Caucus emphasizes local and state political business. It’s essential for Democrats to participate in BOTH of these political events! Here’s why:

Primary – Tuesday, March 3, at our Town Offices

Last fall the Maine Legislature decided to change Maine back to a Presidential Primary state.

● The Presidential Primary will determine how Maine’s 24 Pledged National Delegate slots will be distributed among presidential primary candidates.

● A Presidential Primary is just like any other election. It is run by town clerks and the Maine Secretary of State, and takes place at official polling locations. (At our town offices)

Caucus – Sunday, March 8, Boothbay Region High School, 2 p.m. (doors open at 1 p.m.)

Caucusing is required by state law even though we are also having a presidential primary. Why? Because the caucus is about a lot more than just voting for your presidential preference. Once every two years, we call all Democrats to meet in their towns and conduct a caucus to fill important positions on the town, county, and state levels. In addition to this important Party business, we also hope that caucuses are a chance to:

● Show our strength and support for our Democratic candidates.

● Reconnect with our Democratic neighbors.

● Meet candidates running for local office.

● Learn about ballot issues and sign petitions.

● Activate and revitalize our Municipal Committees.

● And - most importantly - start organizing to WIN in November!

For more information about the Democratic Primary and Caucus, please see the Maine Democratic Party website: https://www.mainedems.org/

The Town Committees and Lincoln County Democratic Committee will need the energetic involvement of our community to ensure that Maine stays Blue in this historic election year! For more information, please feel free to contact Paula Arsenault, Chair of Boothbay Democratic Committee, at paulamragsdale@gmail.com or 380-7554; or Chris Johnson, LCDC Chair, chair@lincolncountydemocrats.com