The Republican Party saw a notable victory in Maine’s recent special election, flipping a district that Democrats had secured merely months prior. This triumph brings renewed vigor and optimism to the GOP’s pursuit of balance in state governance.
The victor, Abden Simmons, an experienced former state representative, secured the election with a solid 52% of the votes, surpassing his Democratic opponent, Wendy Pieh, who also held previous state representative credentials.
Simmons now steps into the position previously held by Democrat Clinton Collamore, representing Bremen, Friendship, Louds Island Township, Waldoboro, and Washington. Collamore vacated his post in February amid allegations of violating the Maine Clean Elections Act and forging signatures to illicitly collect $14,000 in public campaign funds.
While Collamore pleaded not guilty to these charges, he has pledged to return the disputed campaign funds and his legislative salary. However, the fallout from these allegations has undeniably played a role in reshaping the political landscape in the district.
A local clammer and elver fisherman, Simmons also serves as a selectman in Waldoboro. His victory, although it doesn’t tip the balance in Maine’s State House – Democrats still lead House Republicans 81-68, with two liberal-leaning independents – does serve as a heartening boost to the GOP, a party keen on reclaiming a majority in the house.
Joel Stetkis, the Chairman of the Maine Republican Party, lauded Simmons’ victory as “massive news for Maine.” He attributed the win to Simmons’ deep ties with the community and his relentless advocacy for his district’s interests. Stetkis also commended the grassroots team effort from the Republican Party, signaling its robust reinvigoration.
In a candid comment, Stetkis extended his thanks not just to the Republican team, but also to ultra-liberal Democrats, including President Joe Biden and top state legislators. He suggested their consistent support for far-left policies made the decision easier for voters, stating, “Mainers in this battleground district today said ENOUGH.”
Mainers seemingly made a bold statement against spending increases, the extreme left-wing agenda, and broken promises. With the election of Abden Simmons, they’ve signaled their desire for change – and their faith in the GOP to lead that change.