BATH — In order to hang onto his House District 52 seat for another three years, Rep. Sean Paulhus, D-Bath, must fend off a challenge from Republican businesswoman Christina Hughes.

Paulhus was elected to represent Bath in an April 2019 special election to fill the post vacated by Jennifer DeChant, D-Bath.

Hughes and Paulhus discussed Maine’s recovery from the economic pressures caused by the coronavirus pandemic and another issue they would prioritize if elected to Augusta.

Election Day is Nov. 3.

Christina Hughes

Hughes said she is creating a coalition of small businesses around Bath, where she owns and operates the Sea Side Studios tattoo parlor, to help the community emerge from the hardships caused by COVID-19.

“I want to be … the voice for all small businesses,” Hughes said. “We really are the backbone of this country and the backbone of Maine. … I definitely want to listen to the people, because I feel like the people have been ignored.”


Bath’s education program is enough of a concern for Hughes – particularly seeing how some students’ grades have suffered through remote learning – that she also plans to run this year for Regional School Unit 1 Board of Directors.

“If we are collecting $38 million from the taxpayers … we could definitely better our vocational programs,” said Hughes, who also noted the importance of keeping Maine’s graduates in Maine instead of them being forced to move elsewhere in search of higher-paying jobs.

Apprenticeship programs at Bath Iron Works are a means of utilizing local job opportunities, she said.

Sean Paulhus

Helping his constituents “get the services that they need and deserve,” particularly in the wake of COVID-19, has been a key objective for Paulhus. He hopes to turn around delays in those services and ensure businesses and individuals get the funding they require.

“That’s something that we really need to focus on … what worked well and what didn’t work, and make sure that those kind of things are in place for working families and businesses,” he said.

Continuing work to make health care accessible at an affordable level for families is another key priority, as well as ensuring that “the people in our education systems have the support and resources that they need, definitely in a time like now that we’re in,” Paulhus said.

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