Lincoln County Republicans held their Lincoln Day Dinner at the 1812 Farm in Bristol on February 12. The theme of the event was Lincoln’s speeches. Trish Warren, candidate for House District 48, read the Emancipation Proclamation. Ed Polewarczyk, candidate for Home District 47, read the Gettysburg Address, and Bill Maloney, chairman of the Wiscasset City Committee, read Lincoln’s second inaugural address. These documents speak of the civil war, of the purpose, of the sacrifice, and then of the hope of healing. Republicans can be proud of our first Republican President, the sacrifice of the Union Army, and especially the sacrifice of the Mainers who fought to right a great wrong. In many ways, these documents speak to the heart of our nation and our hope for the future, even today.
Republican candidates spoke about current concerns. There was a general concern about the overreach of government in Maine and the loss of personal freedoms. The Covid-19 closures have damaged our economy and negatively impacted our children’s education, socialization and emotional growth. Out of control spending and federal government policies have led to inflation and are impacting Maine’s working poor. The general opinion is that the education system is failing our young people. Many of our current graduates are unqualified to fill a backlog of vacancies. This hurts both our graduate students and small businesses that cannot find help. Paul LePage and Abdon Simmons of Senate District 13 were particularly interested in better job training programs. All the candidates have talked about returning to a system that places more trust in the collective wisdom of voters and less in a one-size-fits-all Augusta solution.
On a lighter note, it was a pleasant evening of socializing and celebrating Lincoln, especially since the event was canceled last year. It is a pleasure to return to a more normal life as state mandates are reduced and life slowly returns to normal. It was also discovered that two of our House candidates, Ed Polewarczyk and Lynn Madison, worked in the shuttle program and could be called “rocket scientists”. Ignoring the obvious punchline, it would be nice to have two more scientists in Augusta. Republicans are planning a better future for Maine.