Voters in Senate District 20 elected Democrat Ned Claxton over four–term Rep. Eleanor Espling, R-New Glouester, on Election Day. Lakes Region Senate incumbents up for re-election Nov. 6 retained their seats.
Incumbent James Hamper, R-Oxford, defeated Democrat Michael McKinney of Hiram for the District 19 seat. Hamper has held the position since 2012. At the polls, he received 58 percent of the vote.
Senate District 19 covers Bridgton, Brownfield, Denmark, Fryeburg, Harrison, Hiram, Naples, Norway, Otisfield, Oxford, Paris, Porter and Sebago. The tally was 8,999 to 6,475. Hamper took Bridgton (1,367 to 1,145), Sebago (463-434) and Naples (1,149 to 787).
Neither Hamper nor McKinney responded to requests for comment.
In District 20, Democrat Ned Claxton of Auburn defeated Eleanor Espling, a New Gloucester Republican, in a close race. He received 51 percent of the votes, and she received 49 percent.
Senate District 20 includes Auburn, Mechanic Falls, Minot, New Gloucester and Poland. The tally was 8,957 to 8,761. Espling took New Gloucster 1,696 to 1,208.
Espling has served in the Maine House of Representatives for eight years.
“It was a close race, and a lot of people didn’t vote for me, and my job is still to represent all that I can of their concerns, which I understand pretty well from knocking on 9,500 doors and talking to some wonderful, steady, decent Mainers,” Claxton said.
He added, “It’s a real honor and an amazing privilege, and it carries with it significant responsibilities that I am going to live up to.”
Espling did not respond to requests for comment.
Incumbent Cathy Breen, D-Falmouth, won re-election in District 25 against Cathy Nichols, a Falmouth Republican. Breen received 62 percent of the vote.
Senate District 25 covers Chebeague Island, Cumberland, Falmouth, Gray, Long Island, Yarmouth and part of Westbrook. The tally was 15,152 to 9,442. Nichols topped Breen in Gray 2,102 to 2,027.
Breen said she’s “really grateful to the voters and appreciate their faith in me. It’s a great privilege to represent this district.”
In District 26, incumbent Bill Diamond, D-Windham, who ran unopposed for his ninth term in the Senate, said he was impressed by the large voter turnout.
“I’m very proud of everybody making the extra effort in less than ideal weather conditions. People come to the point that they want to make a statement, whatever that may be. What’s important is that they came in. There were people of all ages, all ethnic backgrounds, all genders. It was just amazing,” he continued.
Senate District 26 includes Baldwin, Casco, Frye Island, Raymond, Standish and Windham.
Jane Vaughan can be reached at 780-9103 or at email@example.com. Kate Collins contributed reporting.
Democrat Ned Claxton defeated four-term incumbent Eleanor Espling, R-New Gloucester, for the District 20 seat in the state Senate.