Maine Citizens for Clean Elections Deliver over 85k Signatures to State House

Posted on February 1, 2015. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , |

85,185 signatures were collected and delivered by over 200 Maine Citizens for Clean Elections volunteers to Maine Department of the Secretary of State’s office on January 21 after a rally held in the State House’s Hall of Flags. The signatures, gathered since the November election, should be enough to place a ballot measure before Maine voters for establishing new campaign donor disclosure requirements and replacing the “matching funds” provision for publicly-financed candidates.

MCCE’s Andrew Bossie, BJ McCollister, Ann Luther, former State Senator Ed Youngblood (R-Brewer) and former Rumford GOP state representative candidate Jolene Lovejoy spoke to those assembled.

    Andrew Bossie: “We are here to celebrate a remarkable and important citizen-led effort to shine the light on dark money, keep politicians accountable and restore Maine’s Clean Election law. “This is an effort of, by and for Maine people. We’re here today because we want a government that works for everyday voters, not one bought and paid for by wealthy special interests. We’re here today because when our democracy is threatened, we the people, will fight to keep it strong.”

    Former State Senator Ed Youngblood (R-Brewer) speaking at MCCE rally

    Former State Senator Ed Youngblood (R-Brewer) speaking at MCCE rally

    Ann Luther: “Today is about Maine people leading on one of the most important issues of our time. We will simply not back down when it comes to strengthening our democracy and the role of everyday people just like us within it.”

    Former Senator Ed Youngblood (R-Brewer): “The Clean Election Initiative is all about making sure that Maine people have the opportunity to step up, run for office, and serve their constituents without relying on big-money special interests. So much about politics is about divisions, but in this Clean Election endeavor, we are Mainers first. Republicans like me worked alongside Democrats, Greens, and unenrolled voters to collect these signatures. That is a reflection of the widespread concern about the skyrocketing cost of elections and the growing role of big money.”

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SD 32’s GOP Nichi Farnham: “Running with the Wrong Crowd” (Video)

Posted on October 18, 2012. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

Oh my. Fresh on the heels of an ethics complaint against her categorized as a particularly galling and egregious violation of Maine law by Maine Dems’ chair Ben Grant and Bangor residents calling her out for ‘grievous infraction’ of campaign ethics, comes this latest video illustrating how SD 32’s State Sen. Nichi Farnham is “running with the wrong crowd” and away from her record. Give it a look:

    “State Senator Nichi Farnham is running with the wrong crowd in Augusta. She’s been standing up for the weatlhy and selling out the middle class. She caved into the health insurance lobbyists and voted for a bill to allow them to raise premiums on small businesses and seniors. And then a PAC she controls took money from a health insurance company to run attack ads against her opponent, landing her in hot water with the Maine Ethics Commission. Nichi Farnham is now running from her record of selling out Maine’s middle class.”

For her part, the beleagured state senator yesterday issued a rather weak “Oops!” explanation for the alleged violations. A hearing by the Maine Ethics Committee has been set for October 31 to take up the matter.

*Related: SD 17′S Republican Garrett Mason: ‘Busy, Busy, Busy’ (VIDEO)

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MCCE Releases Second ‘Money in Politics’ Report, Detailing Top 10 Privately Funded Candidates

Posted on July 19, 2012. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

This morning, Maine Citizens for Clean Elections released their second report detailing money in Maine politics. (A link to the first report, PACs Unlimited: How Legislator PACs Distort Maine Politics)

The Leader Board: Maine’s Top Legislative Fundraisers and How They Earned Their Spots looks at the ten candidates who have raised the most private money for their own campaigns between 2002 and 2012. While some have raised a lot of money over many campaigns and others have had just one or two very expensive races, these candidates (5 Republicans and 5 Democrats) “epitomize fundraising under the private funding option”.

Andrew Bossie, MCCE Executive Director: “Our analysis shows distinct styles of fundraising. There are the wealthy self funders, the ones who rely largely on corporations and political action committees, and the candidates who raise money from a broad array of sources, including many individual donors.”

The list:

1. John D. Linnehan of Ellsworth (GOP)
2. Paul L. Tessier of Fairfield (Dem)
3. Christopher G. Hall of Bristol (Dem)
4. State Sen. Bill Diamond (D-Cumberland)
5. State Sen. Nancy Sullivan (D-York)
6. State Rep. Dana Dow (R-Waldoboro)
7. Former State Sen. Dennis Damon (D-Hancock)
8. State Sen. Debra Plowman (R-Penobscot)
9. Frank Farrington of Bangor (GOP)
10. Gerald M. Davis of Falmouth (GOP)

From MCCE:

The Money in Politics Project is a series of twelve reports about the role and effect of money on Maine politics. The reports combine a review of publicly available campaign finance data with on-the-ground analysis of how money influences Maine’s elections, government, and public policy. Maine Citizens for Clean Elections launched this project because money in politics is an issue of vital concern to the people of Maine, one that goes to the heart of our democratic system.

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