The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Wednesday, June 02, 2004  

All Politics is Local -- Especially in Maine

The details of my impending trip to Portland, Maine, which I’ve discussed here in the past, are being finalized.

As you know, the purpose of the trip is to help my friend and fellow blogger, Mary Beth Williams of Wampum, with last-minute electioneering and such in her Democratic Party primary campaign for a seat representing Portland in the Maine House of Representatives.

(This trip would not have been possible without the kind and generous gifts of Rittenhouse readers, who I again thank profusely.)

I’m pretty excited. It’s been years since I’ve done ground level campaigning, and I can’t think of a better place to rewet my feet than Maine. (Last visit to the Pine Tree State: 1986.)

I’ll tell you one thing, though: Traveling on a tight budget, circumstances that are new to me, presents some unique challenges. Instead of going directly to Portland, I will be flying from Philadelphia to Boston, taking a subway from Logan International Airport to the Boston North train station, and subsequently riding Amtrak to Portland. And then doing the same thing on the way back. (The trip from Boston to Portland is surprisingly long: roughly two and one-half hours. It’s a good thing I like riding trains.)

I am leaving Philadelphia on Friday and returning from Portland on Wednesday -- after the victory party, of course.

What excites me more is that I feel privileged to call Mary Beth a friend and knowing she will make an outstanding legislator: a progressive Democrat, intelligent, thoughtful, dedicated, hardworking, and principled.

You can learn an awful lot about Mary Beth from a profile published in the Portland Phoenix, “Candidate Blog,” by Alex Irvine, and from her self-authored profile at the campaign web site.

And you can learn all too much about the sleazy desperation tactics of her opponent, Charlie Harlow, or at least some of his supporters, by clicking here.

By the way, did you know that the city of Portland is represented in the state capital, Augusta, by 10 men and no women?

It’s not too late to contribute to Williams’s campaign. In fact, now is the very best time to do so. You know, if 100 Rittenhouse readers ponied up $5.00 each, M.B. would have another $500 heading into the crucial final days before the primary. To contribute to the Williams campaign, follow the link at the bottom of this page.

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