2013-04-08 / Front Page

Richardson preps another run for Congress

Navy veteran, 62, lost GOP primary handily in 2012
By LARRY GRARD, Times Record Staff

BELFAST

Encouraged by his support in 2012, U.S. Navy veteran Blaine Richardson said he is taking another run at Maine’s 2nd District congressional seat.

Richardson was a virtual unknown in the state’s political world when he lost a bid to win his party’s nomination for the seat last year to state Sen. Kevin Raye, who garnered 60 percent of the vote to Richardson’s 40 percent.

“Nobody knew who Blaine Richardson was,” Richardson told The Times Record in announcing his candidacy. “That’s a great showing for a complete unknown.”

Richardson decided to run again “right after” U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud, D-2nd District, handily defeated Raye last November. He said he kept his paperwork in place with the Federal Elections Commission and has a campaign committee in place.

Richardson said he told Michaud just that when he saw the congressman at a victory celebration in Hermon.

For his part, Michaud has not made his 2014 intentions known. There is speculation he will run for governor.

Richardson refers to Michaud as “a gentleman.” But the Democrat’s support for Obamacare and immigration reform are chief among the reasons he should be replaced, Richardson said.

“Obamacare cuts Medicare by over half a million dollars, puts health care for our veterans at risk and puts health care for our seniors at risk,” Richardson said. “It leaves everyone’s health care at risk in Maine.”

Liberalized immigration laws would compound the problem, he said.

“That puts the health care of illegal aliens before our veterans,” Richardson said.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has burdened Maine’s small farmers by restricting the production and sale of whole milk, Richardson said.

The state of the economy, he said, is in shambles.

“We’re broke,” he said. “We have to stop the fiscal hemorrhaging.”

Richardson, 62, is aligned with the liberterian/conservative wing of the Republican Party. He has been a visible proponent of Second Amendment rights this year, having helped organize last month’s gun rights rally in Wiscasset.

He said he is not planning on “a career” in Washington.

“I’d be a shoo-in for the Armed Services Committee, if I won,” he said.

Richardson, who retired as a captain after having serving in the Navy for 30 years through four conflicts, graduated from the Naval flight program in 1974 during the Vietnam War, and was an aviator on active duty until 1979. He served as a liaison officer during the Iraq War in 2003.

He and his wife, Laura, own Laura Swift LTD Interior Design, a company that does interior design, builds and renovates homes.
lgrard@timesrecord.com

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