WASHINGTON – There could be a Baldacci running for Congress again in 2014, but his first name isn’t John.
Joe Baldacci, the Bangor city councilor and brother of former Democratic Gov. John Baldacci, said Wednesday that he “definitely would be interested” in running for Maine’s 2nd Congressional District as a Democrat if U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud decides to run for governor next year.
Baldacci, an attorney who also served as Bangor’s mayor, said he is “fully supportive of Mike Michaud for whatever position he runs for.” But Baldacci added his name to the growing list of people eager to succeed Michaud – not to mention John Baldacci, who represented the 2nd District – in Washington.
“I would be interested,” said Baldacci, a well-known figure in his home city where he has been elected three times to the Bangor City Council. “I think the people want somebody who will be a fighter for Maine’s interests . . . and considering the current atmosphere in Washington, I think it is absolutely essential that we elect somebody who is a fighter.”
Michaud, who was first elected to Congress in 2002, said earlier this week that he was seriously looking at jumping into the 2014 gubernatorial race on the Democratic ticket. Democrats are desperately seeking a strong contender who will be able to win in what is expected to be at least a three-way race with Republican Gov. Paul LePage and independent Eliot Cutler.
John Baldacci, who served in the Blaine House from January 2003 to January 2011, has also said that he is considering seeking another term as governor. Joe Baldacci dismissed reports that his brother might re-seek his old congressional seat if Michaud runs for governor, calling such suggestions “pure speculation.”
State Sen. Emily Cain, D-Orono, has also made clear that she would likely consider running for the 2nd District seat but only if Michaud steps down. Other names are also mentioned in political circles however none have confirmed their interest.