Independent candidate for governor Eliot Cutler faces fundraising challenges, an incumbent Republican with fiercely loyal supporters and Democrats determined not to repeat their mistakes in 2010.

But the 67-year-old Cutler, of Cape Elizabeth, says he’s confident his campaign will gain momentum this fall the way it did when he nearly beat Gov. Paul LePage for the Blaine House four years ago.

Cutler hopes to gain support from voters who are concerned about the direction of the state but are uneasy about returning to Democratic rule under Mike Michaud.

As the campaign enters the final months, political observers say that time is running out for Cutler to overcome his biggest hurdle in the race: convincing anti- LePage voters that he — not Michaud — is the candidate who can win in November.

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