Gideon makes case for U.S. Senate as in-person absentee voting begins in Maine

Monday was the first day of in-person absentee voting in many cities and towns across Maine, and voters were ready to weigh in on the hotly contested U.S. Senate race between incumbent Republican Sen. Susan Collins and Democratic challenger Sara Gideon.School teacher Chris Hanley dropped his ballot off at the new ballot drop box outside Brunswick Town Hall.”Why not just be assured that my vote is going to be counted,” Hanley said.Hanley said he voted for Gideon.”I’m not able to vote for Collins anymore after the Brett Kavanaugh vote; it just really turned me off,” Hanley said.Voter Heather Newman, who said she was switching from Collins to Gideon.”She’s gonna be new, so that’s gonna a detriment, but I really think she has a strong voice and really good ideas,” Newman said.Gideon on Monday pushed back on Collins’ argument that her seniority and experience steering federal funds to Maine deserves six more years.”Somebody who has seniority should be able to use that seniority to protect our health care, to protect people with pre-existing conditions, to lower the cost of drugs, to get more COVID-relief,” Gideon said.While Gideon met with military veterans at the Mid Coast Resource Center, Collins announced an expansion of a Veterans Administration caregiver program resulting from her legislation.Gideon also touted her record as Speaker of the House in Augusta in addressing the opioid epidemic with state funding for medication assisted treatment, such as at the Two Bridges Regional Jail, where Lincoln County’s sheriff said 80% of inmates have substance use disorder.”We need help from the federal government thinking about how we meet people when they are ready for treatment whether it through diversion programs or whether it is treatment within jails.,” Gideon said.Gideon argued that Collins has not stood up to President Donald Trump when it has mattered most, and that’s reflected in groups for abortion rights and gun control, conservation voters and unions that once endorsed Collins now endorsing her.

Monday was the first day of in-person absentee voting in many cities and towns across Maine, and voters were ready to weigh in on the hotly contested U.S. Senate race between incumbent Republican Sen. Susan Collins and Democratic challenger Sara Gideon.

School teacher Chris Hanley dropped his ballot off at the new ballot drop box outside Brunswick Town Hall.

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“Why not just be assured that my vote is going to be counted,” Hanley said.

Hanley said he voted for Gideon.

“I’m not able to vote for Collins anymore after the Brett Kavanaugh vote; it just really turned me off,” Hanley said.

Voter Heather Newman, who said she was switching from Collins to Gideon.

“She’s gonna be new, so that’s gonna a detriment, but I really think she has a strong voice and really good ideas,” Newman said.

Gideon on Monday pushed back on Collins’ argument that her seniority and experience steering federal funds to Maine deserves six more years.

“Somebody who has seniority should be able to use that seniority to protect our health care, to protect people with pre-existing conditions, to lower the cost of drugs, to get more COVID-relief,” Gideon said.

While Gideon met with military veterans at the Mid Coast Resource Center, Collins announced an expansion of a Veterans Administration caregiver program resulting from her legislation.

Gideon also touted her record as Speaker of the House in Augusta in addressing the opioid epidemic with state funding for medication assisted treatment, such as at the Two Bridges Regional Jail, where Lincoln County’s sheriff said 80% of inmates have substance use disorder.

“We need help from the federal government thinking about how we meet people when they are ready for treatment whether it through diversion programs or whether it is treatment within jails.,” Gideon said.

Gideon argued that Collins has not stood up to President Donald Trump when it has mattered most, and that’s reflected in groups for abortion rights and gun control, conservation voters and unions that once endorsed Collins now endorsing her.