The rain in Maine falls spainly in the plain.
Maine (a.k.a. the "Deep North" or, more popularly, "Down East") is place full of under-employed Democrats who think like Republicans: run-down, well-armed, distrustful of all outsiders but shopping at Wal-Mart.
Every small town is quirky on some level, and Maine is nothing but small towns. We inspired thousands of Stephen King novels. While many American cities were named after older cities from Europe, Maine names half of their cities after countries. So Poland, Norway, China, Peru etc are all just a short drive away. And no matter where you are, if you ask for directions a helpful local with a thick New England accent will happily inform you that you can't get there from here.
There are actually five seasons in Maine: spring, summer, fall, winter, and mud.
Industry or lack thereof
Maine also used to have a lot of lumberjacks, of which only a few crossdressed, but
got sick of them they left for Michigan and Wisconsin in the 1840s, until they also got sick of them moved on to Oregon and Washington in the 1890s. Luckily, the forests grew back long ago and Maine may yet again become a logger's paradise and hum to the wonderful sound of chainsaws and caulk boot tracks crisscrossing the state, now that the goldurn varmintists (who put varmints like spotted owls ahead of people) won't let anyone log in Oregon and Washington anymore. Tiiimm-ber!
Small-town brain drain is what happens when a singular industry ensures that anyone not involved in it becomes part of a social outgroup. Once the industry leaves, it leaves behind only basic service jobs unless something drastic is done. It's a feedback loop which turns your Lincolns and your Old Towns into Shermans and Pattens over time.
Take Millinocket. It's a fake town built to service a lumber mill which is now defunct. It's wishful thinking to imagine that a town with no secondary industry can survive, yet the locals get out the shotguns any time someone mentions developing the tourism industry. It's a cultural victory for them since they're still licking their wounds over Obergefell v. Hodges. So long as the northern rednecks get what they want (the symbolism of the bubba millworker proudly trouncing an entrepreneur who happens to be a woman from south of Millinocket), they won't care. They'll throw votes and money at anyone who promises to reopen the mills, though. (An open letter to the town has been circulating around for awhile now. Love the barely-contained Mow your lawns, you fucking slobs.)
This is the same group who opposed the three ring binder, expansion of wind power and the east/west corridor. They even resisted expansion of high-speed internet up the (then-disused) Loring pipeline in the nineties. Pretty soon, the only person left in "God's country" will be God himself.
Only 6% of Maine's forests are owned publicly, and 28% are owned by paper companies, sawmills, and other processors of wood. These companies allow public access to their land, and usually manage the forest by selectively logging, replanting and so forth.
Has a city full of hipsters, namely Portland. Really, the only good part of Maine.
It has its own LA:
Sodom and Gomorrah Lewiston-Auburn, another mill town which became partially abandoned due to the mill closing. The state decided it could settle a large number of Somali refugees there, which turned the town into a crime—what's that you say? They are less likely to become criminals than the locals, they open up businesses and improve the local economy? We all know that facts are liberal lies!
Maine also has a lot of lighthouses. People occasionally buy those lighthouses to have a "cool" house, only to forget that most of them are on godforsaken rocks with poor internet service, and requiring a boat means a rather inconvenient commute. Jack Chick has yet to note that lighthouses are phallic statues ("and God hates it!") as he has with obelisks, but
give him time and he'll do a tract condemning those Satanic erections too late now, we'll miss your insanity Jack!
Maine is the northeasternmost state in the contiguous United States, and only borders one other state, New Hampshire. It used to be part of Massachusetts, despite not actually bordering it, but was spun off in order to give the North extra Senators as a result of Missouri joining the Union.
Maine is the only state whose name is just one syllable. Remember it! Pepperidge Farm Remembers.
Official state icons
- The official state soft drink of Maine is something called Moxie, which tastes like a cross between cherry cough syrup and burnt gunpowder. Yet it still gets an annual festival held every June in the town of Lisbon.
Maine is basically two states. The more heavily populated southern Maine, specifically York and Cumberland counties in the extreme southern part of the state, tend to be very blue. The rest of Maine, which is more rural, tends to be a little more red, with a splash of a libertarian/anti-government undercurrent, leading to a surprisingly strong performance by Tea Party candidates between 2010 and 2016, even in localities that tend to lean blue. A prime example is Waterville, a large-ish town in central Maine that is considered to be a bit of a Democratic stronghold[note 2]. Despite this, in recent years the town has spawned at least two nutty Tea Party-style politicians, Paul LePage (see "Other state icons", below) and Nick Isgro, both mayors of the city (Isgro being the current mayor[note 3]).
That being said, Maine loves independent politicians. Maine trended right harder than just about anywhere else in 2016, but that's largely because Mainers really loved Trump saying he wasn't beholden to either party. Mainers eat that shit up. Perot had his best performances in Maine in both 1992 and 1996, and independents do very well here. Bernie's in a better position to appeal to that than LePage, so that gives his candidates an edge, unless the vote is split to the left. Maine's current junior Senator, Angus King, is also an independent[note 4], and was governor from 1995-2003; and an independent barely came in second to LePage in the 2010 gubernatorial race, each beating out the Democrat by a lot.[note 5]
Other state icons
- Paul LePage — Insane Tea Party governor who thinks the only black people in Maine are here to impregnate heroin and inject themselves with white women (though to be fair, it's certainly more fun than what Maine usually has on offer). Since leaving office he's been working as a bartender in a restaurant in Boothbay, and has stated he intends to run for governor again in 2022[note 6].
- Novelist Stephen King was born and raised in Maine, which is why it's the setting for approximately 90% of his work. He and his wife, Tabitha King (also a novelist), still live most of the year in Maine. Anyone who lives in Maine can confirm that most of these novels are documentaries.
- The DeLorme map and atlas company
iswas headquartered in Yarmouth. Now they are owned by the Garmin company[note 7]. But you can still see a massive globe in the front of the building as you drive by on I-295 heading north.
- Maine US Sen. Susan Collins and former Sen. Olympia Snowe are
RepublicansRINOs. Susan Collins has tried to cultivate a reputation for having a conscience and ethics, much like Olympia Snowe actually did; in reality, she's pretty much your bog-standard Republican who only takes a real principled stand when her vote doesn't matter. Her lack of spine almost caught up with her in 2020, as polling in the aftermath of the Kavanaugh fiasco[note 8] and the Trump impeachment[note 9] showed her lagging behind either of the likely Democratic candidates. But Maine Democrats still had time to screw it up.[note 10] Indeed they ultimately did-in a cycle where most Democrats not named Biden did unexpectedly poorly, Collins won re-election by a fair margin against her much hyped Democrat challenger Sara Gideon.
- Jud Crandall — Man who knew not to bury anything in the Indian burial ground. Sometimes, dead is better. Popularized Maine's accent.
- L.L. Bean. The guy who sells outdoorsy clothing. Yes, he exists.
Angela LansburyJessica Fletcher, Cabot Cove's own mystery writer and serial killer.
- No, this is not the Maine penny you might have heard of.
- The town's voting population is about 41% registered Democrats compared to 18% registered Republicans, with 38% undeclared and 3% Green Party.
- Isgro notably made national headlines in 2018 for publicly mocking a survivor of a mass shooting; the backlash led to a recall election, which he just barely survived. He also flirted with a LePage-style run for governor in 2018, but ultimately did not.
- If you break him down by issues and policy stances, he's pretty much a standard boring moderate Democrat. And prior to 1994, he was in fact a registered Democrat.
- LePage got 36.7% of the vote, Cutler (the independent) got 35.9%, and Mitchell (the Dem) got 18.8%. Womp womp.
- Maine has weird term limits- a person can only serve two consecutive terms in a row, otherwise, there's no limits. Serve two terms, take one off, and you're free to come back for two more.
- The acquisition was finalized in 2016. DeLorme still technically exists as a subdivision of Garmin, but the Yarmouth headquarters now bears signs for Garmin rather than DeLorme.
- In short, Collins, who sits on the Judiciary Committee, famously spoke a lot about concerns she had with Kavanaugh, but when it came time for the committee to vote, she ultimately folded and voted in favor- if she had voted against, his nomination would've died in committee.
- Again, she voted Trump's way and when asked about it afterward, claimed she didn't think Trump would retaliate against those who voted against him (which, yeah, he totally did), and curiously claimed that Trump learned "a pretty big lesson" while he was in the midst of a victory tour and the just mentioned retaliations.
- Another quirk of Maine politics is the Democrats have shown a willingness to pointlessly split their ticket. The aforementioned Paul LePage won his 2010 election with only 37.6% of the vote- because a Democrat and a Democrat-like Independent ran against him, and split the vote. This happened again in 2014, although not as dramatically.
- Sambides Jr., Nick, "East Millinocket voters reject national park by wide margin", Bangor Daily News (29 June 2015, 9:27 p.m.).
- "Paul LePage asks Trump to return national monument in Maine to private ownership", Boston Globe via Associated Press 23 Febuary 2017.
- Boston Globe
- Lighthouses for sale
- Maine Governor Paul LePage criticised for 'racist' remarks