Longtime legislator John Martin isn’t throwing in the towel just yet. For about sixteen months now, he’s been out of the House of Representatives – and he wants that to change.
“The end of February, I made the decision that I would run again,” said Martin.
A well-known name in Maine politics, the democrat spent nearly five decades as a Maine lawmaker. He served as Speaker of the House for an unprecedented ten terms. He then spent eight years in the Senate before returning to the House. Republican Mike Nadeau’s defeat over him in 2012 shocked a lot of people – Martin says since then, the phone calls from Mainers everywhere haven’t stopped.
Martin said, “probably 4 or 5 a day..and say..Are you running? how come? what can we do to get you to run?”
His phone rang during his interview with NewsSource 8. He hears the same thing from other legislators.
“Every day…democrat and republican,” said Martin.
Governor LePage even chimed in to say he misses Martin’s experience, this in response to his frustrations with term limits. First elected into the house in 1964, Martin says is knowledge makes a difference.
“You’ve got to know the process, you’ve gotta know the rules..you’ve gotta know how its done..you’ve gotta know how it works..and if you do that you can get things accomplished..otherwise than that, its not gonna happen,” said Martin.
Martin’s opponent Republican Mike Nadeau told NewsSource 8 that while Martin has the political experience, he himself has the business experience that will help make Maine a better state.
“I think it’s a matter of what kind of experience you have. I think most folks regardless of party would agree that for years or even decades, politicians in Augusta have not let Maine live up to its potential. My experience is not with that policymaking, but with working hard to start a business and earn my own way like so many folks are trying to do here in the County,” said Nadeau.
Nadeau added that the people made a decision to change direction after forty years and he says he’s working hard every day to do that. Martin plans to campaign this year and set up a debate with Republican Nadeau so that people can see where both of them stand on the issues. Both are looking forward to the race.