Ryan Fecteau

BIDDEFORD — Incumbent Democratic State Rep. Ryan Fecteau handily beat his Republican challenger Emily Rousseau for the Maine House District 11 seat in Tuesday’s election.

The vote in the district, which includes part of Biddeford, was 2,391 to 1,464.

Fecteau has been in office since 2014 when he beat Debi Davis. The Biddeford native was reelected in 2016.

In a pre-election email survey, Fecteau said about the ongoing gun control debate and what should be done about it here in Maine, that “there is no question that gun violence is an epidemic in our country. Each time I see the breaking news headlines concerning a mass shooting, whether at a concert, a school, or a nightclub, my heart sinks into my stomach.”

Fecteau believes the implementation of universal background checks is the first step to solving the problem of mass shootings and school gun violence.

He also said “This public policy debate has devolved in such a way that reasonable, common sense interventions have been drowned out by assertions that all guns are going to be taken away. The seriousness of gun violence should not be left unaddressed, because extreme convictions on both sides of the issue have paralyzed political courage.”

Fecteau also addressed the rising costs of health care in Maine.

“I remain immensely concerned about the rising costs of health care, particularly how it has burdened seniors in our community. The health care system is completely broken. Drug companies exploit those who are reliant on medications to survive and insurance companies require customers to leap through hoops before they cover medications or procedures,” Fecteau said.

The Biddeford Democrat believes the first step to solving the problem is expanding MaineCare.

When it comes to luring high-paying jobs to Maine, Fecteau believes it starts with investing in Maine-based businesses.

“I believe our best opportunity to add high paying jobs is to grow Maine-based businesses.” He said the state could provide  grants to small businesses to train staff, provide low-interest loans to businesses so they can take risks and invest in trade schools to insure there are enough workers in Maine.

“We need to double down our efforts to train and retain our young people. I’ve sponsored legislation to send a bond to voters that would invest $40 million in our vocational schools,” Fecteau said.

He said he wanted to return to the Legislature because, “I love our state and our city. The opportunity to serve in the Legislature, representing my hometown, has been an immense privilege. He said he ran for re-election, because I know the challenges ahead will require persistence and new perspectives to solve.”

“I am the right choice for voters in this election, because I will continue to press the issue of attracting and retaining young people,” Fecteau said. “I will not give up on ensuring our seniors can enjoy the retirements that they worked hard to earn. I am more motivated than ever before to challenge the status quo and offer new ideas concerning looming barriers to our state’s success.”

— Associate Editor Dina Mendros can be reached at [email protected] or at 780-9014.

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