“How we do things matters,” Independent candidate Terry Hayes said in a recent campaign video as she continues to push to become Maine’s next governor. How we do things does matter, but in order to dictate if Hayes has the ability to become and prosper as governor, we must look at her credentials.
Hayes’ campaign website can be found here. In bold, on the front page, a simple message reads, “Terry is one of us, for us.” This is not a unique message and, matter of fact, it’s a message we hear far too often, usually followed by regret after voting for someone that is “one of us”… whatever that tends to mean.
“I’m running for Governor to create opportunity and prosperity for every man, woman, and child in the State of Maine,” says Terry.1 “We have everything that we need to succeed. Now, it’s time to put partisanship aside, roll up our sleeves, and get the job done.”
Hayes is yet another individual entering the political world with a firm belief that partisanship must be discarded. This is music to any moderate or independent’s ears. We want someone who throws a wrench in the rusted-out machine we call our government. Stop the machine, oil it up with some new ideas, and get it back up-and-running. With an independent presence, even as governor, we would start to see a shift from hyper-partisanship dialogue to more meet-in-the-middle discussions; something the country desperately needs if we want to accomplish anything besides analyzing tweets and bashing someone for being a liberal or a conservative.
Hayes is also running a “Clean Money Campaign” which is exactly what it sounds like, organic donations from supporters. She’s not taking the usual money from big corporations or enterprises that could influence her decisions, but donations from the people, in which she would be indebted to during her term(s). This is the ideal political competition Americans should want: a government official should be indebted and work for the people that elected them. A Clean Money Campaign ensures the people’s influence on the candidate, and hopefully, the future incumbent.
What has Hayes done in the past?
Before becoming a politician, Hayes was a public school teacher, an adult education administrator, a state employee, and an owner of two small businesses.3 Hayes served four terms under the Democratic party in the Maine House of Representatives from Oxford County, but was unseated by Democrat Mark Eves for House speaker.2 Her next step was to become treasurer of the state, which she accomplished by reaching out to the moderates of each party. When it comes to policy, Hayes has been a progressive pusher, but little is known as to how she would impact Maine if she is indeed elected governor.
Hayes has stiff competition from the likes of Libertarian Richard Light, Republican Deril Stubenrod, progressive activist and lobbyist Betsy Sweet, Democrat Patrick Eisenhart, and Portland lawyer and Army veteran Adam Cote.4 Yet, with Hayes’ recent political successes, these competitors should have no impact on how Hayes runs her campaign.
Terry Hayes realistically has a chance to become Maine’s next governor. Maine has been on the front lines of establishing Independents as government officials since Angus King was elected governor in 1995, finished his terms in 2003, then went on to become a member of the Senate for Maine as an Independent. If there is any state an Independent candidate can win, that state is Maine.