Voices & Choices

Why 'try, try again' won’t work for Maine’s 2nd Congressional District race

Why 'try, try again' won’t work for Maine’s 2nd Congressional District race

U.S. Rep Bruce Poliquin has doubled down on his challenge to the Maine’s 2nd Congressional District results, and now wants an entirely new election.

The request comes two weeks after federal district court Judge Lance Walker rejected Poliquin’s request to halt the vote counting in Maine’s CD-2, where polling showed Poliquin likely to lose his seat after the full ranked choice voting count. Poliquin’s loss in court was not surprising, given how weak and farfetched Poliquin’s claims were.

His new request, filed Tuesday, appears to be a response to Judge Walker’s earlier decision, which derided Poliquin for asking him to simply declare Poliquin the winner based on first choices alone. As Walker wrote,

“Perhaps the weakest link in Plaintiffs’ presentation concerns the issue of remedy. Simply stated, Plaintiffs have not provided the Court with any reasoned argumentation, supported by citation to authority, on the specific topic of why the remedy they propose is the remedy they are entitled to.”

Given these statements, it is unsurprising that Poliquin has changed tactics.

Invalidating an entire election and demanding that Maine’s Secretary of State conduct a new one is a drastic remedy. Fortunately, none of this changes the weakness of Poliquin’s substantive arguments, which means Judge Walker is unlikely to need to decide whether to take such an unprecedented step.

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