The Washington Post dropped an interesting story about the Maine Senate race, claiming that President Donald Trump wants the Governor to run. The story, citing White House advisers, claims he intends to call Governor LePage and offer his endorsement if he were to run.
It’s clear to even the most casual of political observers that conservatives are not big fans of Senator Angus King. The problem is that his popularity and name carry a lot of electoral weight. His war chest will not be easily defeated, thus the need for a credible candidate.
It’s been previously reported that Steve Bannon wanted the Governor’s wife, Ann, to run. In either case, Senator Paul LePage or Senator Ann LePage would be welcome by many Republicans across the state.
Will President Trump follow through?
The Governor’s name apparently came up during a White House meeting discussing Senate candidates. President Trump wants to be more involved up and down the ballot and Governor LePage is a friend and ally of his.
The report that President Trump has identified Maine’s race as one of interest is significant. It also speaks a lot about the current state of the race that a new candidate is being sought.
Despite Bannon and the President’s wishes, it is important to note that the Governor has previously said no to running for United States Senate.
But on the other hand, two people with knowledge of discussions told the Washington Post that the President’s team has been in touch with Governor LePage’s political team in recent weeks. It would appear that those connected to both individuals are remaining hopeful and potentially laying the ground work.
If Republicans are to take the Senate seat from Senator King, Governor LePage is likely their best option. He is known statewide and has established himself as a viable political force. He’s more popular than the media often gives him credit for, hence why he won two gubernatorial races, each against popular establishment Democrats.
Without Governor LePage in the race, Senator Angus King is likely headed for another term. This is something that allies of the Governor and President are all aware of.
The only question remaining is whether or not the Governor wants Angus King to serve another term.