David Sinclair is sworn in as Bath’s state representative by Gov. Janet Mills. Courtesy of Maine Legislature House Democratic Office

Bath Democrat David Sinclair was sworn in as the newest member of the Maine House following a special election last week.

Sinclair, a lawyer and former Bath city councilor, ran unopposed in Tuesday’s election to replace Sean Paulhus, a Democrat representing House District 50. Paulhus resigned in July in the middle of his third two-year term after Gov. Janet Mills appointed him Sagadahoc County register of probate. Mills swore in Sinclair Thursday in Augusta.

David Sinclair is among the Maine House’s Democratic majority, which holds an 80-68 edge over Republicans. Courtesy of Maine Legislature House Democratic Office

“I am thankful to the people of Bath for giving me the honor of representing them in Augusta,” Sinclair said in a statement. “I look forward to working with my new colleagues on a range of issues in the coming months, including our state’s housing crisis.”

During a Democratic caucus in August in which he defeated author and musician Peter Macdonald Blachly, Sinclair said his positions include mitigating climate change and gender- and race-based wage gaps, and promoting women’s reproductive freedom and gender-affirming care.

“We are lucky to now have Rep. Sinclair in the House Democratic Caucus,” said House Majority Leader Mo Terry in a statement. “I look forward to working closely with Rep. Sinclair on affordable housing measures, equity issues and all the other matters that are important to his constituents and the people of Maine.”

Sinclair, 54, lives in North Bath with his wife and two children. He runs a Bath-based law practice and said he focuses on services for the underprivileged. He served two terms on the Bath City Council from 2008–2014. In 2014, he ran for district attorney as a Democrat, losing to Republican Geoffrey Rushlau. He said he has helped run local political campaigns and has served on the boards of the Bath Area Food Bank and Two Bridges Regional Jail Authority.

Democrats hold an 80-68 advantage over Republicans in the House and a 22-13 advantage in the Senate.

Asked why no Republican candidates ran in the special election, Sagadahoc County Republican Chairperson Kelly James cited a short time frame, as the election was announced Aug. 17 and the filing deadline was Sept. 1.

“A special election is always an advantage to the party in power,” James said. “Two weeks was a quick turnaround to advertise a caucus and then hold the meeting to select a candidate. The candidate we talked to who was the most interested in running preferred to run in the next regular election because of commitments this session.”

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