Lincoln County Democrats held their annual lobster bake Aug. 13 in Waldoboro, and got the coming campaign season off to a rousing start with speeches from three candidates for the Democratic Party’s gubernatorial nomination: former Maine House Speaker Mark Eves, of North Berwick, progressive lobbyist Betsy Sweet, of Hallowell, and lawyer and Army National Guard veteran Adam Cote, of Sanford, according to a news release from the committee. All three candidates talked about the importance of bringing Democratic Party leadership back to the governorship and the legislature, to advance those policies that Democrats know are essential to the wellbeing of all Mainers, whether speaking of the economy and jobs, healthcare, the environment and renewable energy, or other policy areas.

According to the release, Eves said he is motivated to pursue the governorship out of concern over what the state’s future will offer to his children. The key to his success, he said, will be to listen to what the people are saying, warning that some politicians “are not doing any listening at all.” The conversations he had with voters informed his work during his eight years in the legislature, he said, and will inform his work as governor.

Sweet said the goal of her 35 years of advocacy in Maine has been “to make sure ordinary Mainers are at the table in Augusta,” because “if we’re not at the table we’re often on the menu, and that has never been more clear than in the past six years.” She emphasized that one of the major things getting in the way of policy progress is money in politics, and she spoke of her role in helping write Maine’s Clean Elections law, the first in the nation.

Cote said his and his wife’s decision to run came down to “loving our state and talking about what it will look like 10 years from now.” There is no reason, he said, not to have the best public schools in the country in 10 years, healthcare for everybody, an end to the opioid crisis through addiction treatment, and Maine become the first state in the country to achieve 100 percent renewable energy.

The event was held at Cider Hill Farm on West Main Street in Waldoboro and attended by an estimated 100 people. Jeff Hurd of The Narrows Tavern was the caterer. Raw oysters were provided by Jeff “Smokey” McKeen’s Pemaquid Oyster Co. McKeen also joined with Carter Newell to perform as The Oystermen musical duo. Oyster sauces were provided by Waldstone Farm and served by Kayli McKeen and Jan Curran, according to the release.

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