Last Tuesday's election was a watershed moment for the gay marriage movement. Voters in three states voted to legalize it -- something no state had done before -- and a fourth state voted against a proposed ban.
And if the movement catches on in other states, African Americans and Latinos will be a big reason why.
Former Maine governor Angus King, an independent, won the open Maine Senate race Tuesday, beating back a challenge from Republican Secretary of State Charlie Summers.
Even though no vote totals have been reported, AP has called the race for King.
Now that King has been elected to the Senate, questions will persist about whether he will caucus with Democrats. Despite steadfastly refusing to pick a party to caucus with during the campaign, national Democrats and Democratic-leaning outside groups dumped millions into the race to ward off Summers when the polls narrowed.
All eyes in the political world are fixed on tonight’s debate between President Obama and Mitt Romney. But elsewhere, House and Senate candidates are feverishly tallying their fundraising numbers.
The third quarter — the last full quarter before the November election — came to a close at midnight Monday, which means we’ll soon know who raised how much for the stretch run of the 2012 campaign.
Republicans are in a pickle in Missouri, where they are now confronted with whether to fund a badly damaged Senate candidate they swore off a month ago.
But Senate Democrats might face their own pickle in the weeks ahead. And his name is Angus King.
King is, for all intents and purposes, the Democratic nominee in the open Maine race where Sen. Olympia Snowe (R) is retiring. The actual Democratic nominee, state Sen. Cynthia Dill, has gotten the cold shoulder from the national Democratic Party and lags far behind in the polls. And most everyone believes that King would caucus with Democrats if he’s elected — although he’s been reluctant to say that.
Senate Democrats’ and Republicans’ campaign arms would be wise to heed the words of Oscar Wilde, the 19th century Irish dramatist: “To expect the unexpected shows a thoroughly modern intellect.”
With nearly all of the major Senate primaries wrapped up, a series of unexpected events has swung momentum to and fro in the battle for the Senate, with the end result being a landscape offering a path to the majority for both parties.
Updated at 11:49 p.m.
The two major parties chose their candidates for Maine’s open Senate seat, but in this unusual race, both will face an uphill battle against popular former governor Angus King, an independent.
State Sen. Cynthia Dill beat former Maine secretary of state Matthew Dunlap and two other candidates in the Democratic primary. She ran as a progressive Democrat fighting Gov. Paul LePage (R).
On the GOP side, current Secretary of State Charles Summers beat out state Treasurer Bruce Poliquin and four others. Poliquin ran to the right of Summers and lost despite outraising his rival and getting help from the outside group FreedomWorks.
Maine Democratic Rep. Chellie Pingree has opted to run for reelection rather than challenge former Independent governor Angus King for the state’s open Senate seat.
“There is much at stake in this election, and although the prospect of running for and possibly serving in the United States Senate was very exciting, in the end I concluded that I will best serve the people of Maine by running for reelection to the House,” Pingree said in a statement.
The Plum Line’s Greg Sargent broke the news of Pingree’s decision.
Early 2011 was an avalanche of good news for Republicans intent on regaining control of the Senate.
Early 2012 has been a reality check.
Sen. Olympia Snowe’s (R-Maine) retirement announcement Tuesday and former senator Bob Kerrey’s (D-Neb.) announcement Wednesday that he will seek a return to the Senate punctuated what has been a gradual rolling back of the GOP’s early momentum in the race for control of the Senate in 2012.
Republicans are still primed to compete for a Senate majority, which would require a four-seat gain, but the map looks significantly more difficult than it did a few weeks ago — to say nothing of the political environment itself.
Rep. Ron Paul’s (R-Texas) campaign may have blown its best chance at winning a state in the Republican presidential contest last week in Maine.
But there will be other opportunities in the weeks ahead.
Mitt Romney has won the Maine caucuses, turning aside a valiant effort from Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) and getting back on the winning side of the ledger after a tough week.
Results of the week-long caucuses released Saturday evening by the Maine Republican Party showed Romney with 39 percent of the vote, Paul with 36 percent, Rick Santorum with 18 percent and Newt Gingrich with 6 percent.
Coupled with his victory in Saturday’s straw poll at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, the Maine win gives the GOP front-runner and former Massachusetts governor a substantial boost heading into a 17-day period in which there will be no contests.