The Tipping Point Blog Archive 2009
In a recent column, I wrote that Maine was sixth in the nation in the financial burden we place on students in higher education, based on a study conducted in 2006.
Since then, I've received some education myself. It turns out we're actually fourth.
Maine has a long history of citizen involvement in local politics, so it's no surprise that many Maine towns now have resident bloggers writing about local issues. That loud guy in the audience at town meetings can now continue his rants on the internet.
Matt Gagnon has been on a roll lately. The Virginia-based Republican who authors the Pine Tree Politics blog has been posting interesting and informative updates regularly for the past few weeks and has been asking important questions like "Where the heck is Dawn Hill?"
For years, lawmakers and political pundits in Maine were obsessed with one number; the state’s ranking by the Tax Foundation, showing Maine residents paying one of the highest percentages of their income in taxes of any state.
In 2008 the Foundation fixed the way it calculated tax rates and reran the numbers from the past decade. It turned out that Maine was actually fifteenth in the nation in taxes and only .3% off the national average. At no time had the state ever been higher than fifth.
Eliot Cutler has had a career that’s taken him from his home state of Maine to Washington D.C. to Beijing and back again. He’s now seeking to use that experience to claim the Blaine House and become the third independent governor in Maine’s history.
Two other independents, James B. Longley in 1974 and Angus King in 1994, have successfully navigated the path that Cutler is hoping to follow.
(In case you missed it: part 1)
The glory of victory, the agony of defeat, all ahead as the winners of the 2009 election prediction betting pool are announced.
First, however, is Question 3.
With .0019% of the vote still outstanding (according the Bangor Daily News), I'm finally ready to call the winners of the 2009 Maine Election Pool.
If I were going for complete accuracy, I might have waited until all the votes were in, or perhaps until they were certified by the Secretary of State, but a certain journalist with mob connections has been threatening me to get this done and I don't want to end up sleeping with the fishes.
The results of last week's election aren't contained solely in the success or failure of the big-ticket ballot items. The local elections and the discussion of who voted and why is just as important. Here are some general thoughts on the election of 2009:
Today is election day, which means that tomorrow there will be new narratives to explain why Maine people voted the way they did.
If Question 1 is defeated, then the story may be that Maine is a state of rugged New England individualists who believe people should be able to make their own choices. If Question 1 passes, then perhaps Maine will be thought of as a rural, Catholic state with an elderly electorate.
It's that time of year again, the chance to prove you know the people and the politics of the state of Maine. It's the 2009 Maine Election Pool!
You may remember last year's pool, where readers attempted to predict the 2008 Maine presidential, senate, congressional, legislative and referenda votes and Dan B. came in first with an average calculated error of just over 3% in each race (doing far better than most polls).