Republican Collins will stay in US Senate, focused on healthcare

Mark Dion

U.S. Sen. Angus King says Susan Collins is putting the people of ME first by deciding to remain in the U.S. Senate rather than run for governor. The work she does for ME - while rarely easy and often understated - is a reflection of her work ethic and her infinite energy to serve the people of our state.

GORHAM (AP) - A prominent ME businessman has joined the Republican Party as he considers a second bid for governor.

Democratic Chairman Phil Bartlett said Friday that it "doesn't say much for the Maine Republican Party" that Collins would rather stay in D.C. than contend for governor. By all accounts, Collins is an overwhelming favorite to win re-election again in 2020, but there had been some speculation that she might decide to forgo that sure thing for the opportunity to become Governor in what would have been an open-seat election due to the fact that controversial Republican Governor Paul LePage is term-limited. "I want to continue to play a key role in advancing policies that strengthen our economy, help our hard-working families, improve our health care system, and bring peace and stability to a violent and troubled world", Ms. Collins, a Republican, said in a statement.

"As a strong supporter of Susan Collins, if I had to pick which job she would do, I couldn't", said Lance Dutson, a Republican political operative in Maine who worked on Collins' 2014 campaign.

Her decision Friday will likely free more gubernatorial candidates who have been waiting on the sidelines to enter the race.

Australian Mom Wrestles Shark Back into Ocean With Her Bare Hands
Huge cheers could be heard in the background as she succeeded in lifting the shark up and threw it back into the sea. The real estate agent went down to the pool with her kids and said it was easy to spot the shark swimming around.

Like President Donald Trump, LePage has been a polarizing leader.

A moderate Republican with vast influence over transportation funding affairs in the Senate announced her intention to seek another term in office and not pursue the governor's mansion in her home state of Maine. She also said she felt an affinity for Augusta, the capital, where a long line of ancestors served in the State Legislature, starting with her great-great grandfather and including her father. The election to replace him is in 2018.

"Ultimately, I have been guided by my sense of where I could do the most for the people of Maine - and our nation", Collins wrote in remarks she will deliver at a Chamber of Commerce event in Maine this morning".

When it comes to Rep. Poliquin, he's essentially in the latter camp of LePage and Trump, but less overtly when it comes to rhetoric and willingness to stand up for ideas in public.

Maine's current governor, Paul LePage, a Trump ally, would have appointed a replacement for Collins if she made a decision to leave the Senate.

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