PORTLAND, Maine — Outspoken Republican Governor Paul LePage narrowly won reelection, with openly gay Democrat Mike Michaud conceding defeat early Wednesday morning in Maine’s heated three-way race.
LePage faced Michaud, a six-term Democratic representative, and independent attorney Eliot Culter in a race dominated by debates on such issues as health care and the economy.
As LePage and Michaud remained neck and neck in the polls for months, observers believed the outcome would hinge on Cutler’s impact on the race.
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With 82 percent of the returns in, LePage had 48 percent of the vote, Michaud 44 percent, and Cutler 8 percent.
Had he been victorious, Michaud would have become the nation’s first ever out gay person elected governor.
Michaud came out as gay one year ago in an op-ed, saying he didn’t want his campaign for governor to be undermined by “whisper campaigns.”