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Democrat candidate race heats up in Maine

Published:Thursday | June 7, 2012 | 12:00 AM


With big names like Chellie Pingree, John Baldacci and Mike Michaud bowing out, the four Democrats seeking the party's nomination in the United States Senate race in Maine are battling to show they can take on both the Republican nominee and independent former Governor Angus King in November.

The Senate candidates include the state's former top election official, a pair of current state lawmakers, and a homebuilder.

University of Maine political science professor Mark Brewer says the Democratic field is contending with criticism that it's light on experience.

Former Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap said it's up to the Democratic primary winner to create excitement and demonstrate a viable alternative.

Dunlap, along with state Senator Cynthia Dill, Rep Jon Hinck and Portland homebuilder Ben Pollard, are facing off on Tuesday's primary ballot.