Polls indicate high Maine voter turnout

Posted Nov. 05, 2012, at 5:31 a.m.
Last modified Nov. 06, 2012, at 7:15 a.m.

PORTLAND, Maine — Officials estimate 65 to 75 percent of the state’s voting-age population will cast ballots Tuesday. Four years ago, 70 percent of Maine’s voting-age population cast ballots.

President Barack Obama has a comfortable lead in the state, according to most recent polls. However, Republicans in the 2nd Congressional District still are hoping to steal one of the state’s four electoral votes away from Obama. Maine is one of only two states that employ the congressional district method of distributing electoral votes. Nebraska is the other.

Although there’s a slim possibility of this occurring, Maine never has split its electoral votes since enacting the system in 1972. Polls indicate Obama has roughly a seven-point edge in the district.

In 2008, slightly more than 731,000 votes were cast. Obama ultimately won 57 percent of these votes to Republican challenger John McCain’s 40 percent.

Maine’s turnout Tuesday also may be buoyed by a same-sex marriage referendum shaping up for a close finish. Several recent polls indicate turnout in Maine likely will be high — driven largely by interests in both the presidential race and the same-sex referendum.

Despite tight competitions in these races, several of the state’s other contests appear largely decided even before tomorrow’s vote. Former Gov. Angus King leads Republican Charlie Summers despite a steady stream of Republican-backed advertisements aimed at destabilizing the independent.

Further, both of Maine’s incumbent members of Congress — Chellie Pingree and Mike Michaud — are maintaining sizable leads in their re-election bids.

(c)2012 the Foster’s Daily Democrat (Dover, N.H.)

Visit the Foster’s Daily Democrat (Dover, N.H.) at www.fosters.com

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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