PORTLAND — City primary voters Tuesday chose the slate of candidates to represent their parties in the November election.

In total, 19,962, or 33.5% of voters participated in the July 14 primary, including more than 14,750, or close to 74% doing so via absentee ballot.

In the House District 37 race, Grayson Lookner defeated fellow Democrat James Cloutier by pulling in 52% of the 1,816 votes. The seat is being vacated by Richard Farnsworth, who is retiring after 10 non-consecutive terms in the statehouse.

Lookner faces Jane Frey, who won the Republican nomination, and John Warren Safarik, a Green Party member, who is staging a write-in campaign.

Barbara Wood was victorious in a three-way race with Charles Skold and Michael Flaherty in the Democratic primary for the House District 38 seat. Wood captured close to 54% of the 2,426 votes cast, followed by Skold  with 36% and Flaherty, 10%. The seat is being vacated by House Majority Leader Matt Moonen, who is being termed out of office.

The result of the House District 41 primary between Democrats Laurie Davis, Benjamin Grant and Samuel Zager is still up in the air. Zager, receiving 49.5% of the 2,519 votes cast, is the leader thus far over Grant with 36% and Davis with 14.5%. However, because none of the candidates received a majorityvotge  the race now needs to go through the ranked choice process in Augusta. Zager does not know how long that process might take. The winner will replace Erik Jorgensen, who is being termed out of office.


In the House District 43 Democratic primary, incumbent Edward Crockett fended off challenger Bob Mentzinger. District 43 represents parts of Portland and Falmouth. Crockett won  with 62% of the 1,870 votes cast in the two communities.

With no competition in November, Wood is expected to earn her first term in the statehouse and Crockett is expected to be returned for his second.

A number of  incumbents, including state Reps. Michael Brennan (House District 36), Michael Sylvester (House District 39), Rachel Talbot Ross (House District 40) Benjamin Collings (House District 42) and state Sens. Heather Sanborn (District 28) Benjamin Chipman (District 27), ran unopposed in the Democratic primary. Only Collings is faces competition in November, as Republican Susan Abercrombie and Green Party member Carolyn Silvius are also running for the House District 42 seat.

Aside from choosing legislative party nominations, Portland voters also overwhelmingly passed the $119.9 million school budget with 86% of the 18,756 voters supporting it and the creation of a charter commission, with close to 73% of the 18,218 voters supporting it.


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