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Wednesday January 04, 2012 | 07:15 AM

Democrat Jon Hinck says he will fight “powerful special interests” like ExxonMobil and Goldman Sachs if Mainers elect him to the U.S. Senate in place of Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe.

Hinck doesn’t mention Snowe in his first web ad, posted on YouTube, but says in a statement accompanying it that, “This ad gives only a glimpse of the long list of large corporate special interest donors to Olympia Snowe, who has spent 33 years as a career politician in Washington. Among those highlighted are big oil's ExxonMobil, Pfizer, the world's largest pharmaceutical company, and Wall Street giant Goldman Sachs.”

Hinck cites his history as a founder of Greenpeace USA and an environmental lawyer in the ad.

Snowe is running for her fourth-term in the Senate, and served in the U.S. House prior to winning the Senate seat in 1994. She won re-election in 2006 with 74 percent of the vote, and had more than $3.2 million in her campaign coffers as of Sept. 30.

Hinck says in a separate release touting the ad that Snowe has raised more than $1.4 million so far this election cycle from political action committees, including those run by ExxonMobil and Goldman Sachs and Pfizer, the pharmaceutical company.

Hinck, a state senator from Portland, also doesn’t mention that he has at least one rival for his party’s U.S. Senate nomination: former Secretary of State Matt Dunlap of Old Town. State Sen. Cynthia Dill, D-Cape Elizabeth, says she is considering getting in the race, as well.

Snowe is being challenged in the GOP primary by two tea party movement affiliated candidates: Scott D’Amboise of Lisbon Falls and Andrew Ian Dodge of Harpswell.

Fundraising totals as of Dec. 31 aren’t due into the Federal Election Commission until Jan. 31, so it isn’t clear yet how much headway Snowe’s rivals are making in raising campaign cash. Hinck’s web ad asks for contributions, saying that he wants to make sure that "Red, White and Blue still stands for Red, White and You."


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Kevin Miller is Washington bureau chief for the Portland Press Herald and MaineToday Media. He has worked as a journalist in Maine for 6 ½ years, covering the environment, politics and the State House. Before arriving in Maine, he wrote about politics, government and education for newspapers in Virginia and Maryland.
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