Letter to the Editor: Mainers put community before politics

Re: Sen. Susan Collins’ re-election victory: Many outside of our state interpret think that  Mainers are neutral in politics and this could not be further from the truth. I live in Kittery and identify as a liberal Democrat. I live amongst like minded liberals, independents, libertarian and there is no shortage of die-hard conservative Trump supporters. We are all passionate and unwavering in our political ideals. We are not neutral nor are we individually nuanced when it comes to our political affiliations.

I grew up in Maine and have lived here since the age of 5 with no plans of leaving. Having been born in Louisiana and connected to my father’s Chicago roots, I have experienced political interactions in other places. What truly sets us Mainers apart as a “moderate state” is our ability to put one another before politics. Maine is distinguishably different than many places when it comes to the loyalty of our community over politics

My mechanic hates Harris, my snow plow dons Trump flags and my favorite customer would leave Trump pamphlets under my windshield to tease. When I was divorced and bought a gun to protect myself, it was NRA die hards neighbors who graciously volunteered to help me learn how to load and shoot it – with of course, some jesting at my expense for being a liberal who can’t shoot.

I’m a liberal, Black Lives Matter supporting, pro LGBTQI registered Democrat who enthusiastically voted for both Joe Biden and Susan Collins. As a Mainer, this is not odd nor does it stand out. I am one of those who cares about “Putting Maine first” which means both my neighbors and Maine’s prosperity. I do not agree with everything Collins has done, but I voted for her proven loyalty to Maine over all else, and those are values core to our state’s character and what decided my vote.

Kelly Garver

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