The race in the Democratic primary for state House of Representatives District 88 pits a Harvard-educated grassroots organizer from Nobleboro against a former Army soldier and current teacher from Chelsea educated at the University of Maine at Farmington and Thomas College.

Either Chloe Maxmin, 25, of Nobleboro, or Alan Plummer, 51, of Chelsea, will square off against Michael Lemelin, of Chelsea, the only Republican who has declared as a candidate for the District 88 spot. The spot was previously held by Republican Deb Sanderson, who is stepping down because she has reached the term limit.

District 88 includes Chelsea, Jefferson, Whitefield and part of Nobleboro. The primary elections are June 12.

Maxmin said she’s been involved in politics since she was 12 and has the skills to get elected and help transform the political system to work for the people she hopes to represent.

“It’s pretty clear politics as usual is failing us, and not just in District 88,” said Maxmin, a grassroots organizer who has worked on campaigns for Bernie Sanders and other candidates and is a graduate of Emerge Maine, an organization which seeks to train Democratic women for political office. “I will work with people to pressure our political system so it works for us. There is so much energy behind this campaign and that is the kind of energy we need in November.”

Plummer said he is a regular guy who wants to represent and help the regular people of the district.

“I know the day-to-day struggles of life in the district, I watch my (adult) children struggle to pay student loans back and still contribute to the community,” said Plummer, who teaches math, yoga and mindfulness at Stepping Stones Montessori School in Chelsea, and who served six years in the Army. “I have an elderly mom and stepdad and they struggle with health and finances and life in general and it’s not easy. I know the struggles of regular people young and old and I want to focus on making their lives better.”

Plummer said he sees key issues, for the district and state, as affordable health care and medications, protecting children and staff in schools, protecting the environment by working toward “green” energy alternatives to petroleum products, and strengthening the economy. He said steps to improve Maine’s economy could include tax breaks for middle and lower income residents and overhauling the whole tax system so it brings in more revenues from tourists visiting the state.

“Trickle down economics does not work,” he said. “I believe strengthening local communities, small and medium businesses, helping the middle class and below the middle class, is how we’d thrive. Looking at the tax system overall, how people are taxed for their land, and the sales tax, all those things are up for grabs.”

Maxmin said key issues for the district and state include restoring faith and hope to the political system, the lack of affordable health care, taking care of elders, a lack of educational resources, protecting the environment by transitioning to more renewable forms of energy, and seeking to make sure jobs in Maine provide a livable wage.

“First we need to be standing strong on the minimum wage and make sure it’s a living wage, so everyone who lives here can afford to live, and invest back in the community,” she said. “There are so many incentives in Maine for the most profitable in our state to continue to make their profit at the expense of everybody else. I think a lot of those loopholes can be closed to fund what’s most important for this state. Make sure we’re incentivizing companies to bring skilled jobs to Maine. A big part of that could be the renewable energy industry.”

Both Maxmin and Plummer have social media sites for their campaigns.

Maxmin said she’s running for the House seat because she loves the community where she grew up and wants to fight for it.

Plummer said he’s running because he found himself, after the 2016 presidential election, complaining about the situation and decided he needed to do something about it, and he wants to represent the people of the district.

Keith Edwards — 621-5647

[email protected]

Twitter: @kedwardskj

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