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Enough Is Enough: Winning an election take more than getting your name on the ballot

By Robert E. Macdonald

Mayor of Lewiston

You win some, you lose some.  For now, mayoral candidate Ben Chin, is a 0-for-2 in his quest to bring a Berne Sanders/Bill DiBlasio style of socialism to Lewiston.

Two years ago in 2015 I had decided not to seek a third term as mayor. I was content to fade into Lewiston political history. Then Ben Chin, Bates College graduate and political director of Maine People’s Alliance, stepped to the podium and announced he was running for mayor. The crowd, consisting of Bates College students and professors, local activists and many of the great unwashed, cheered wildly.

Chin laid out his plan to win the election. First, he had raised $90,000 from all over the country and portions of Maine. He had a cadre of Bates College students and Maine People’s Alliance activists ready to knock on neighborhood doors, pass out campaign literature and make calls to Lewistonians in support of his candidacy.  This was the largest amount of campaign volunteers Lewiston had ever experienced.

The well-conceived plan should have easily won him the election. But something went wrong. Those Bates social science courses failed to enlighten him about Lewiston’s electorate. He soon found out, much to MPA’s chagrin, that what resonated in California, New York and on the Bates campus was foreign and repulsive to Lewiston voters.

I bring up the aforementioned to enlighten the reader what it takes to win an election. There is much more to it than just getting your name on the ballot.

It is necessary to not only build up a large contingent of followers dedicated to you, but ones that are also willing to do the mundane things needed to run a successful winning campaign. Chin, through his position in the MPA, has the ability of instantly mobilizing an unlimited amount of people to help launch a successful campaign.

Chin and the MPA have become a power player when it comes to progressive causes and legislation. This power gives them the ability to pour money and resources into campaigns sympathetic to their organization’s mission statement. They also have the ability to produce a well-funded opposition opponent, should the current officeholder go against them.

This brings me to the second part of this column: Where were the voices of condemnation from Lewiston’s elected state officials over the derogatory comments made by mayoral candidate Chin about segments of Lewiston voters? To my knowledge, not one of them stood up and condemned Chin’s remarks.

Come next November, voters should be questioning our elected state officials why they were silent.

Over the past six years we have submitted welfare bill after welfare bill trying to rein in the fraud and abuse committed within our city. Year after year, bill after bill, our submitted legislation is consistently defeated by progressive Democrats in the legislature. And always in the mix is Ben Chin and MPA.

Part of our frustration is due to the lack of support by our local legislators. They repeatedly side with Chin and the MPA against the will of the majority of Lewiston voters. Why?

Due to the lack of news coverage, you, the voter and taxpayer, have no independent way of knowing what your legislators are accomplishing in Augusta.

Starting in January we will track bills being opposed by the MPA and their cronies. Thus, when you go to the polls next November, you will be able to answer this question: Who is my legislator voting to support—me or the MPA?








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