AUGUSTA, Maine — A recount confirmed Mark Holbrook as the winner of the Republican primary in Maine’s 1st Congressional District on Wednesday, putting him on track for a race as a massive underdog against U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree.
Holbrook, a counselor from Brunswick, beat North Yarmouth lawyer Ande Smith by 57 votes after a recount that began Tuesday in Augusta, according to Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap’s office. That was two votes more than unofficial results from Election Day.
After that announcement, Holbrook said he was “relieved” that it was over.
“The one thing that we can be assured of is that the voters of this district had all of their rights protected and the process protected,” Holbrook said.
Holbrook said he has been ramping up fundraising in his bid to unseat Pingree, but he has a gargantuan task ahead of him: As of late May, he raised less than $38,000 to Smith’s $230,000 and Pingree’s $367,000, as reported to the Federal Election Commission for the campaign.
Pingree, a four-term Democrat, is heavily favored. She easily beat two conservative challengers in 2014 — a good Republican year in which Democrats lost 13 House seats nationwide — with 60 percent of votes.
But in a concession statement, Smith said the race showed “that voters are tired of politics-as-usual, and are ready for serious change and reform.”