Originally published in Island Ad-Vantages, November 8, 2012
Island voters on trend with state
Except for Maine Senate District 28
by Jessica Brophy
Statewide, the vote for the U.S. president was 56 percent for Barack Obama, with all four of Maine’s electoral college votes going for the Democratic incumbent. Forty-one percent went to Republican challenger Mitt Romney. In Deer Isle, Isle au Haut and Stonington, 68 percent of the vote went for Obama.
Former Governor and Independent candidate for the U.S. Senate Angus King won handily with 53 percent of the statewide vote. His margin of victory was even greater in the Ad-Vantages’ three towns, with nearly 56 percent of the vote going for King.
Statewide, State Senator for District 28 Republican Brian Langley was re-elected by 572 votes, 51 to 49 percent. In the Ad-Vantages’ three towns, Langley only garnered 44 percent of the vote, with the rest going to Democrat challenger David White.
Despite the numbers against him in Deer Isle, Stonington and Isle au Haut, Langley said he is “proud to go back to work.” The senator said he had several projects in progress, including working with Todd West at the Deer Isle-Stonington High School to develop the marine studies pathway. Other projects Langley said he is eager to continue include furthering the “Bridge Year” program, other educational reforms, and addressing the fisheries.
When asked via phone on Wednesday, November 7, whether he was surprised at the close race, Langley said he was “surprised by a lot of things last night.” He acknowledged that two years ago he won with 51 percent, and had hoped to have a similar showing.
“You don’t ever take anything for granted,” said Langley.
District 37 Representative Walter Kumiega was re-elected by a nearly 30 percent-point margin over Republican challenger Kim Strauss. In Deer Isle, Isle au Haut and Stonington, Kumiega was given a nearly three-to-one margin, with 74 percent of the vote.
In a phone interview on Wednesday, November 7, Kumiega said it felt “great to have the support of the people.” Kumiega said there are a number of issues related to fishing on the horizon for the legislature, including the lobster marketing program and possible licensing changes.
“I hear all the time from fishermen, ‘Don’t fix it to death,’” said Kumiega. He said another issue on the radar for this term is streamlining food processing law.
Maine became the first state to legalize same-sex marriage through popular vote. While Question 1 passed with 53 percent of the vote statewide, in Stonington, Deer Isle and Isle au Haut the margin was bigger, 58 percent for the measure and 42 against.
Voters statewide passed three of the four bond measures handily, as did the voters of Deer Isle, Stonington and Isle au Haut. The conservation bond issue of $5 million for Land for Maine’s future passed, as did the $51.5 million transportation and the $7.9 million drinking water bond issues. Question 2, the bond issue requesting $11.3 million for higher education improvements, was too close to call as of press time. In Deer Isle, voters approved that bond measure by a mere 12 votes, and in Stonington by only six votes.