Newcomer Nicholas McGee, 28, said he decided to run for the Senate District 9 seat because he loves the state and wants to make a difference.

A stay-at-home dad for 14-month-old Madison, Republican McGee is originally from Wells and lives in Portland’s North Deering neighborhood with his wife, Vanessa. McGee graduated from Providence College in 2001 with a double major in history and political science.

He said his passion for politics started in high school. During college, he was an intern for the Rhode Island state Senate and later worked for a nonprofit, the American Arbitration Association. Before his daughter was born, McGee worked for a Portland law firm as a paralegal and then as the manager for the firm, where he still does some consulting.

McGee believes his wide range of experiences, coupled with his caring personality, would be valuable in the Senate.

One experience he had has driven his desire to get into politics. As a young graduate, he saw first-hand how difficult it is to get a decent-paying job in Maine.

“Middle-class jobs are kind of scarce,” he said.

An opportunity he sees for creating more jobs in the state is through offering incentives for companies that produce energy-efficient products or develop renewable energies to locate in Maine.

McGee said he thinks it’s still too early to tell whether the school consolidation law is “going to produce the results we were told it would,” and he would be interested in revisiting the legislation in a year or two.

It’s clear to McGee, however, that Dirigo Health is not working as a program.

“I don’t think Dirigo should be funded,” said McGee, who is opposed to the beverage tax both because it funds Dirigo Health and because it was passed without the public getting the opportunity to speak about it.

“(Dirigo has) had five years, It’s not working, and I don’t see anyone fixing it,” he said.

McGee said he’s not opposed to having casinos in Maine, but believes the one being considered for Oxford County “hasn’t been a fair proposal” because the company that would run it would have a 10-year monoploy and because of the question to lower the gambling age.

“We’ve got to make sure it’s done right,” he said.

Nicholas McGee

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