Robert Daigle

ARUNDEL — Former legislator Robert Daigle, who left the political scene back in 2006 to concentrate on his business, is in the running for the Republican nod in Senate District 32.

If successful in the June Republican primary and in the Nov. 3 election, the Arundel resident would represent a district made up of the towns of Alfred, Arundel, Dayton, Kennebunkport and Lyman and the city of Biddeford, the latter traditionally a Democratic stronghold.

The current sitting senator, Democrat Susan Deschambault of Biddeford, earned nearly three times as many votes in Biddeford as her Republican counterpart, Scott Normandeau, in the 2018 contest, but Daigle sees change among the voters.

“Biddeford has changed and is changing,” said Daigle by telephone in a recent interview. “People are not locked into party voting as they perhaps were in the past; they’re open-minded.”

Daigle, 66, said he is running because he believes there needs to be strong Republican voices in Augusta.

“In the last election the Democrats took control of both houses and the governor’s office, and they’re going a little crazy with all that authority,” said Daigle. “(Former governor Paul) LePage left us with a strong balance sheet by saying ‘no’ when it was time to say no … all the money that comes in now goes out faster than ever.”

Proposed programs need stronger scrutiny to determine how the state will pay for them, if the state can afford them, and whether the initiative under consideration is the right thing to do, he said.

“I don’t think people of Maine are as wildly to the left as the governor and Legislature have been pulling the state’s agenda so far,” he said.

Daigle is an engineer and small business owner, operating CCR (Complete, Consistent and Resilient) Compliance LLC, a safety and environmental compliance consulting business.

He served in the Maine House of Representatives from 1998 to 2006. He then concentrated on his business, but now that his daughter is off on her own, he said he feels like it is time to cut back a bit and make a run for the Maine Senate.

“I always missed it; I loved the intellectual connection,” in the Legislature, said Daigle.

He said he is a listener, knows how to communicate and will tell people in advance how he feels about issues.

During his stint in the Legislature, Daigle served as House lead on the Environment and Natural Resources Committee and served a chair of Maine’s Pollution Prevention Advisory Committee, to which he was appointed by Governor John McKernan, according to a news release issued by Maine Senate Republicans announcing his candidacy.

Daigle served on active duty and in the reserves with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from 1975 to 1989.

He and his wife Mary Jo have lived in Arundel for 35 years.

“My goal is to provide my neighbors and my community with strong representation in the Maine Legislature where decisions are made that so strongly affect their lives,” said Daigle in the news release. “I will always be an advocate for policies that address the concrete needs of Mainers and not the fashionable political theories of the day.”

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