Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6

This diary is the seventh and last of a seven-part series on Maine’s political geography. In this diary, I will present a hypothetical Democratic gerrymander of the Maine State Senate, using the information I have presented in the first six diaries in this series. This map is designed to take into account not just general partisanship but also incumbents’ hometowns and factors such as economies and ethnicities. With this, I show that Democrats could draw themselves a pretty solid majority in the State Senate if they had the opportunity to do so.

Color code for the maps below (and for all other maps like this that I draw):

Darkest blue: 80%+ for Democrats
Dark blue: 70-79.99% for Democrats
Normal blue: 60-69.99% for Democrats
Lighter blue: 55-59.99% for Democrats
Lightest blue: 50-54.99% for Democrats
Yellow: No candidate received an absolute majority of votes
Pink: 50-54.99% for Republicans
Normal red: 55-59.99% for Republicans
Brown: 60-69.99% for Republicans
Dark red: 70-79.99% for Republicans
Darkest red: 80%+ for Republicans
Gray on the State Senate map represents towns won by independent candidates. White represents towns where no one voted. Green represents uninhabited townships.

Here is a map of Obama’s performance by town in 2012:

ME 2012 town map of results

Here is a map of Maine’s Question 1 (gay marriage) in 2012:

ME 2012 gay marriage ques 1 town map

Here is a map of Maine’s State Senate results in 2012:

ME 2012 StSen results town map

Follow me over the fold to take a look at the map!

Here is a map of the whole state:

ME StSen whole state

Here is a map of Southwestern Maine:

ME StSen southwest

District 1 (blue): Dawn Hill (D-York)
Prez 2012: 58-40 Obama

This district contains the southwestern tip of Maine, including the towns of York and Kittery. It is very similar to Hill’s current district, except that to reach population equity it takes in part of Wells rather than part of Berwick. This was done since Ronald Collins (whom you will hear of just below) is from Wells, and he performed very well there last year, and so I wanted to take some of Wells away from him in order to increase his chances of losing. As for Hill, she won 63 percent last year in a very similar district, so she is pretty safe. SAFE D.

District 2 (green): Ronald Collins (R-Wells)
Prez 2012: 52-46 Obama

This district is quite similar to Collins’ new district (but not the one that he ran in last year). Some of the more conservative and rural towns are removed, and lean-Democratic Kennebunk is added. Collins won 46% in a three-way race last year, and only got above 50 percent in Wells, so that’s why I removed some of it. With the addition of Kennebunk (which is bigger than Wells), Collins has a much greater chance of being defeated. I’d say that at this point this race is a TOSSUP.

District 3 (purple): John Tuttle (D-Sanford)
Prez 2012: 55-42 Obama

This district is based in Sanford, and is quite similar to Tuttle’s current district (where he won 62 percent in 2012). Based on that result, and the Presidential numbers, I’d be surprised if Republicans seriously contested this district, when they would have so many more marginal ones to choose from. LIKELY/SAFE D.

District 4 (red): David Dutremble (D-Biddeford)
Prez 2012: 60-37 Obama

This district is based in Biddeford, and extends north to Lyman and Hollis. Dutremble won only 53 percent last year against an independent, but he loses Kennebunk, where he did badly, and gains some moderate towns. However, he will always be favored as long as Biddeford is in the district. LIKELY D, but with the potential to be safe.

District 5 (gold): Linda Valentino (D-Saco)
Prez 2012: 60-38 Obama

This district contains solidly-Democratic Saco and Old Orchard Beach, as well as moderate Dayton and Buxton. Valentino seems to be more popular than Dutremble, since she won 60 percent last year in a very similar district. SAFE D.

District 6 (teal): James Boyle (D-Gorham)
Prez 2012: 56-42 Obama

This district contains all of Gorham, most of Scarborough, and a portion of Westbrook. Boyle won 55 percent in an open seat that was very similar to this. His strong win, despite the fact that he lost the portion of Scarborough, shows that it would take an extremely strong effort by the Republicans to unseat him. LIKELY D.

District 7 (gray): Rebecca Millett (D-Cape Elizabeth)
Prez 2012: 66-32 Obama

This district is essentially unchanged from its current version. Millett won 64 percent last year, so she is very safe. SAFE D.

District 8 (slate blue): Justin Alfond (D-Portland)
Prez 2012: 76-21 Obama

This district is also basically unchanged from its current version, and no Republican is ever going to win in Portland. Alfond has more to worry about from a liberal independent or a Green than from a Republican. SAFE D.

District 9 (cyan): Anne Haskell (D-Portland)
Prez 2012: 73-24 Obama

This is another basically unchanged, extremely Democratic Portland district. SAFE D.

District 10 (pink): Richard Woodbury (I-Yarmouth)
Prez 2012: 56-42 Obama

This district is very similar to its current version, just losing a small slice of Gray and gaining a small slice of Westbrook. Woodbury, a left-leaning independent, beat a Republican with only 53 percent in this Democratic-leaning district. Woodbury is not likely to be defeated here, and when term limits force him to retire, Democrats will have an excellent chance of picking up this seat. Interestingly, in this seat, Question 1 outperformed Obama by a significant margin last year, showing that the dominant political belief here is social liberalism. LIKELY I for now, LIKELY D when Woodbury retires.

District 11 (chartreuse): Stanley Gerzofsky (D-Brunswick, Garrett Mason (R-Lisbon)
Prez 2012: 60-37 Obama

This district contains Brunswick and Harpswell, and then goes north into Androscoggin County to pick up Durham and Lisbon. Gerzofsky would be strongly favored here, since he is very popular in Brunswick, and an evangelical right-winger like Mason is not likely to play well in Brunswick. This is the first of several districts that contain parts of Mason’s current district. LIKELY/SAFE D.

Here is a map of central Maine:

ME StSen central

District 12 (cornflower blue): Eloise Vitelli (D-Arrowsic)
Prez 2012: 57-41 Obama

This district is unchanged from the current version. As I explained in my diaries, each of the mid-coast counties has about the population of one district, and so there’s not much any redistricter can do with these districts. Luckily, this one, in Sagadahoc County, favors Democrats, and Vitelli (who won a special election recently to replace Seth Goodall, who had resigned) will probably do better in a higher-turnout regularly-scheduled election. No one can be safe here, but I’d say this seat is LIKELY D.

District 13 (dark salmon): Margaret Craven (D-Lewiston)
Prez 2012: 61-36 Obama

This seat is unchanged and continues to consist solely of the city of Lewiston. Craven is very popular here, winning 67 percent in 2012, and thus this seat is SAFE D.

District 14 (olive): John Cleveland (D-Auburn), James Hamper (R-Oxford)
Prez 2012: 55-42 Obama

This seat is similar to John Cleveland’s current district, in that it contains Auburn and Poland. This district also contains Mechanic Falls, Minot, Oxford, and Otisfield. Hamper’s home base in his district is Oxford and Otisfield, so if he tried to run here he’d do very well in those two towns, but Cleveland would probably win everywhere else. Auburn is, after all, more than half the district. Thus I’d say this seat is LEAN/LIKELY D.

District 15 (orange): Gary Plummer (R-Windham)
Prez 2012: 55-43 Obama

This district is shaped like a tilted L, and contains Windham, Raymond, New Gloucester, and Freeport. Plummer won 61 percent here in 2012 against only an independent, and thus he’s never faced a Democrat yet. This district is several points more Democratic than his current district due to Freeport, and the people here outside of Windham and Raymond don’t know Plummer. Therefore, I’d say this district is a TOSSUP.

District 16 (lime): Open
Prez 2012: 51-46 Obama

This district takes in portions of Collins’, Hamper’s, and Plummer’s districts, but contains none of their homes. This district is pretty even in its partisanship, with all but two towns between 50 and 55 percent Obama in 2012. Due to the fact that it’s an open seat in very swingy territory, it’s hard to call this district anything but a TOSSUP.

District 17 (dark slate blue): Open
Prez 2012: 56-41 Obama

This district lies directly north of the 16th, and takes in a swath of some moderate and some liberal-leaning towns. Every town here voted for Obama, but some not by much. Again, no incumbents live here, since this district lies between Hamper’s and Patrick’s bases, but since this district voted 56 percent for Obama, Democrats are favored here. LEAN D.

District 18 (yellow): John Patrick (D-Rumford), Tom Saviello (R-Wilton)
Prez 2012: 58-39 Obama

This district, containing northern Oxford County and western Franklin County, showcases Maine’s parochial nature very well. Both Patrick and Saviello are popular incumbents in their districts, and so if they both ran here, Patrick would destroy Saviello in Oxford County and Saviello would destroy Patrick in Franklin County. However, the district contains 11,200 Oxford residents and only 7,400 Franklin residents, so Oxford would outvote Franklin, and thus keep Patrick in office. In theory, at least. LEAN D with Saviello, SAFE D without Saviello.

District 19 (yellow-green): Rodney Whittemore (R-Skowhegan)
Prez 2012: 55-41 Obama

This district contains the remainder of Franklin County and some more Democratic areas of Somerset County. It also contains the two Democratic-leaning towns of Farmington and Skowhegan. Whittemore is popular in Skowhegan, and would likely win this district until he retired, but once that happens the Democrats would have a pretty good chance of winning this seat. A good candidate would be House Majority Whip Jeff McCabe of Skowhegan. LIKELY R with Whittemore, LEAN D if open.

District 20 (pink): Colleen Lachowicz (D-Waterville)
Prez 2012: 59-38 Obama

This district contains the four towns of the Waterville area (Waterville, Winslow, Oakland, and Fairfield), as well as Smithfield. This district is much more Waterville-centric than Lachowicz’s current district, which should be to her advantage. This district is probably only vulnerable in a year like 2010. LIKELY D.

District 21 (maroon): Open
Prez 2012: 53-44 Obama

This district contains all the river towns south of Augusta, and then takes in a small chunk of Mason’s old district in Androscoggin County. A good candidate for us would be David Bustin, who narrowly lost to Patrick Flood last year but won all the towns that are also in this district. The swingy nature of this area as well as the fact that no incumbent lives here means that this district is a TOSSUP.

District 22 (sienna): Patrick Flood (R-Winthrop), Roger Katz (R-Augusta)
Prez 2012: 54-43 Obama

Despite the Presidential numbers here, this district is intended as a Republican vote sink, since it contains the hometowns of two very popular Republicans here. However, obviously only one can survive the primary, and so it is possible that the eventual nominee will be damaged enough to defeat them. However, the sheer popularity of these Republicans (Flood won 70 percent in Winthrop last year, Katz won 66 percent in Augusta) means that this seat is LIKELY R.

District 23 (aquamarine): Open
Prez 2012: 49-48 Obama

This is an open seat that stretches from Readfield in Kennebec County, around the Waterville area, to Plymouth in Penobscot County. Most of the towns here are moderate, and Obama narrowly won this district, but it’s still a relatively conservative area. I’d have to say this district is LEAN R.

District 24 (indigo): Christopher Johnson (D-Somerville)
Prez 2012: 54-43 Obama

This district, another mid-coast one in Lincoln County, is unchanged from the current version. Last year, Johnson won an extremely close re-election against a sitting state representative. However, now the only Republican state representative in this district is a freshman who would probably be defeated if she tried to move up that quickly. Hopefully, Johnson will manage to entrench himself here, however until he does that, this district is only LEAN D.

District 25 (pale violet red): Edward Mazurek (D-Rockland)
Prez 2012: 60-37 Obama

This is Knox County’s district. Mazurek defeated a Republican incumbent in 2012 by a 53.5-46.5 margin, and the district is unchanged. I’d be surprised if Mazurek had any difficulty here; this district actually swung toward Obama last year. LIKELY D.

District 26 (gray): Michael Thibodeau (R-Winterport)
Prez 2012: 54-43 Obama

This is the Waldo County district, although for population equity I removed Burnham from the district. Thibodeau is the Senate Minority Leader, and he won with 53.6 percent last year. It would take one heck of a challenge to knock off Thibodeau, and Dems have many more enticing opportunities in other seats. However, when the district is open, Democrats should strongly target this district. LIKELY R with Thibodeau, TOSSUP if open.

District 27 (spring green): Geoffrey Gratwick (D-Bangor)
Prez 2012: 57-41 Obama

This is the Bangor district. The current district also contains Hermon, a strongly Republican town, so I removed Hermon and added Glenburn, which has just the right population and is not as Republican as Hermon. Gratwick, who defeated a one-term incumbent last year, should be safer here, but not completely safe. LIKELY D.

District 28 (plum): Troy Dale Jackson (D-Allagash)
Prez 2012: 60-38 Obama

This district is one of the two Aroostook districts. I mentioned in my most recent diary that the districts in Aroostook were less than ideal because they split up the most populous part of the county. However, the fact is, there’s really no way around it, and both parties support the status quo because each party gets a (relatively) safe district. So therefore, my map doesn’t change the Aroostook districts much. This is the northern Aroostook district, and is generally Democratic, however Jackson isn’t entirely safe, since he got only 51.5 percent last year. However, when he retires, Democrats are very likely to retain this seat. LEAN/LIKELY D with Jackson, LIKELY D if open.

District 29 (dark sea green): Roger Sherman (R-Hodgdon)
Prez 2012: 54-44 Romney

This is the other Aroostook district. It is strongly Republican, and relatively unchanged from its current version. Sherman is completely safe. SAFE R.

District 30 (light coral): David Burns (R-Perry)
Prez 2012: 49-47 Obama

This district contains all of Washington County and parts of eastern Hancock County. It has only minor changes from the current version. Despite the face that Obama won it by only two points, Burns had a competitive race last year, winning with 43 percent in a three-way race. Also, this area barely swung at all from 2008 to 2012. Therefore, I’d say that Burns is slightly favored, but a strong Democrat could defeat him. LEAN R.

District 31 (khaki): Open
Prez 2012: 60-37 Obama

This district is entirely in Hancock County, and contains the most Democratic parts of the county. Ellsworth, home to Brian Langley, is removed (since after all, Langley would have lost last year if not for Ellsworth), and Democratic towns such as Bucksport, Orland, and Penobscot are added. There’s really no Republican base here, and a Democrat should win this district with relative ease. LIKELY D.

District 32 (orange red): Brian Langley (R-Ellsworth), Edward Youngblood (R-Brewer)
Prez 2012: 51-46 Romney

This district is basically Youngblood’s current district, minus the portions of Hancock County in it, plus Ellsworth and a few other small towns. The district is still based in the Brewer area, however, and Youngblood’s dominating win in the Brewer area in 2012 shows that he’d be quite safe here. Youngblood would probably defeat Langley in a Republican primary with ease. SAFE R.

District 33 (royal blue): Emily Cain (D-Orono)
Prez 2012: 59-38 Obama

This district is relatively unchanged from the new, redistricted version. It goes up the Penobscot River all the way up to Millinocket, but it is still based in Orono and Old Town. Cain, and her successor (since she’s running for Congress), are quite safe here, since there are fewer swing voters here than in the 32nd. SAFE D.

District 34 (lime green): Andre Cushing (R-Hampden)
Prez 2012: 56-42 Romney

This district is based in the areas of Penobscot County west of Bangor. As you can tell from the Presidential results, this district is a strong Republican vote sink, and thus is completely safe for Andre Cushing. SAFE R.

District 35 (dark orchid): Douglas Thomas (R-Ripley)
Prez 2012: 52-45 Romney

This district contains the most Republican parts of Somerset County, a small portion of Penobscot County, and all of Piscataquis County. Douglas Thomas would be very happy with this district, because the area where he did poorly last time, the Millinocket area, is moved to a different district. Thomas is safe here. SAFE R.

So that leaves…


This concludes my series on the political geography of Maine. I hope you enjoyed reading, and I welcome any feedback or questions!


Does this diary adequately explain my hypothetical Democratic gerrymander of the Maine State Senate?

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