When it comes to gun issues, many commentators claim, only gun rights activists vote with their convictions. They say anyone seeking statewide office better kowtow to the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine and the National Rifle Association.

I say, “Phooey.” John Baldacci, Olympia Snowe, Angus King and Susan Collins all won statewide races after supporting tighter gun laws.

I always investigate where candidates stand on gun issues. I strongly support restrictions like requiring universal background checks – and I consider these issues to be a litmus test of politicians’ character. Do they listen to the majority of voters who support gun-safety measures? Or do they cater to the loud minority of gun rights activists?

When the gubernatorial race began, I was on the fence. Rep. Mike Michaud’s decision to support universal background checks convinced me that he has Maine voters’ best interests at heart. I support Michaud for governor.

Shoshana Hoose