AUGUSTA — Maine’s political parties are making an all-out push to find replacements for 48 candidates who have dropped out of House and Senate races, to ensure that no legislative seat goes uncontested this fall.

Both major parties said Tuesday that they’re committed to competing for all 186 legislative seats in the November elections.

Republicans are determined to retain the House and Senate majorities they won for the first time in decades two years ago. Democrats have set their sights on getting majorities so they can reverse a GOP agenda that has taken hold in the past two years.

“We are going to be campaigning statewide and the Legislature is our top priority,” said Democratic Party spokeswoman Lizzy Reinholt.

GOP Executive Director Mike Quatrano said holding on to State House majorities “is absolutely our No. 1 priority.”

It’s up to local party committees to hold caucuses to nominate candidates in districts where there are vacancies. The process, which is well under way, involves coordination with the state parties.

As of Monday’s deadline for withdrawing, five state Senate candidates – three Republicans and two Democrats – had dropped out.

Of the House candidates, 21 Democrats, 20 Republicans and two Green Independents had decided not to run. The parties have until July 23 to nominate replacements.

On Monday, Augusta Republicans nominated Matthew Pouliot as their candidate in District 57, where Andrew Worcester dropped out after winning the primary June 12.

District 57’s Democratic primary winner, Rep. Maeghan Maloney, withdrew her candidacy for district attorney for Kennebec and Somerset counties. The local Democratic committee will meet today to choose her replacement.

One of the most closely watched caucuses will be held Monday in Senate District 21, where three-term incumbent Republican Earle McCormick of West Gardiner withdrew.

Local party activists must choose between Patrick Flood of Winthrop, a four-term House member from the party’s mainstream, and Ryan Wheaton of Pittston, a teacher who is backed by Ron Paul supporters and represents the more conservative wing of the party.

In Brunswick, Democrat Matthea Daughtry is a candidate for the District 66 seat, now that Rep. Alexander Cornell du Houx has withdrawn.

Cornell du Houx dropped out under pressure from party leaders who said a legal issue had become a “distraction” in the campaign. Du Houx’s former girlfriend, who is also a legislator, filed a temporary protection order against him this spring. The case has since been settled.

Brunswick’s Democrats will hold their caucus Saturday.