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Wow. Democrat Shenna Bellows seems to have launched a great campaign this past week, reminding me of the campaigns of Paul Wellstone and Elizabeth Warren as she zooms to every county in Maine and speaks out against spying and in favor of LGBT equality. She looks like she would be an excellent US Senator:

* Former Executive Director of the Maine ACLU and a leader in the battle to legalize same-sex marriage.

* Former PeaceCorps volunteer.

* Formerly a Program Associate at Community IMPACT! in Nashville, TN, launching neighborhood-based, youth-centered programming in economically and racially diverse neighborhoods.

* Daughter of a carpenter and nurse; grew up without electricity or running water until she was in 5th grade.

* Graduated magna cum laude from Middlebury College with a degree in international politics and economics.

* Worked as a research assistant for several summers during high school and college at the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory and for the campus recycling program at Middlebury College.

* Worked as a researcher and recruiter for Economists Incorporated, a privately held economic consulting firm specializing in microeconomic analysis in antitrust, regulatory, and legal contexts in Washington, DC.

* Strong opponent of the Patriot Act, voter restrictions, NSA spying, etc.

* Supports women's health and reproductive choice, campaign finance reform, universal single-payer health-care (Medicare for All), decriminalization or legalization of marijuana, and the end of the "drug war".

Here is an excellent interview in the Portland Phoenix. And good articles in the Bangor Daily News, Portland Press Herald, and Maine Talk. From the Huffington Post:

[Republican Senator Susan]... Collins has received a significant amount of credit recently for reaching across the aisle to work on a compromise to reopen the government and raise the debt ceiling.

Bellows, however, faulted Collins for her position on the issue.

"I would not have voted with [Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas)] for the shutdown three times," she said when asked what she would have done differently. "I would not have waited three weeks to do what decent human beings do all the time and have a conversation across party lines about how to move forward." ...

From her kickoff speech in Portland:
...I was married on September 21. ... Brandon and I made the decision to spend our lives together in 2010.

But we had made a vow that we wouldn’t get married until every loving committed couple could do the same, including our gay and lesbian friends and family members could be legally married....

From the Associated Press article:
... If elected, she said she would work to repeal the Patriot Act and Real ID, stop the National Security Administration’s electronic spying program and place limits on the use of drones. She said the government needs to stop spending billions of dollars on surveillance and start investing that money on entrepreneurs.

Bellows said she has raised more than $100,000 in two weeks and plans to visit all 16 counties in the next five days. ...

Her campaign launch.

Campaign website.

ActBlue page.

Earlier diaries by maineprogressiveswarehouse and slakn1.

Her husband Brandon Baldwin, is a schools and curriculum coordinator for the Civil Rights Team Project for the office of the Attorney General in Maine.

Originally posted to RandomNonviolence on Sun Oct 27, 2013 at 09:02 AM PDT.

Also republished by BellowsforSenate.

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