Republicans submit two names to governor for Midcoast D.A.
Wiscasset — Republicans from four Midcoast counties have agreed on two names to submit to Gov. Paul LePage to succeed veteran District Attorney Geoffrey Rushlau.
Deputy District Attorney Jonathan Liberman of West Bath and Deputy District Attorney Paul Cavanaugh of Wiscasset are the two names being offered to the governor. Representatives of municipal GOP committees gathered April 10 in Wiscasset to make their recommendations.
Kim Pettengill said she presented the names to the governor's office after the meeting, which attracted 40 representatives who unanimously voted for the pair.
Rushlau has been nominated by the governor to serve as a Maine District Court judge. The Legislature's Judiciary Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing on Rushlau's nomination at 1 p.m. Tuesday, April 25.
When a vacancy occurs for a district attorney, the party of which the prosecutor is a member is responsible for recommending his replacement to the governor who then makes the appointment. Rushlau is a Republican.
Liberman serves as deputy district attorney for Knox, Lincoln, Waldo and Sagadahoc counties. He has held that post since July 2016. From May 2011 until his appointment as deputy district attorney, he served as assistant district attorney — first in Knox and then Lincoln and Sagadahoc counties.
He grew up in Bath, graduated from Chevrus High School in Portland, then attended Syracuse University and later the University of Maine School of Law.
He is married with an 18-month-old son.
Cavanaugh is the deputy district attorney for Kennebec and Somerset Counties, a position he has held since January 2015. From 1993 through 2014, he served as assistant district attorney in Hancock and Washington counties. Before that, he served as an assistant attorney general.
He has four children from his first wife, who died in 2006. His partner is former Five-Town Community School District/SAD 28 Superintendent Patricia Hopkins.
He graduated from the University of Maine in 1987 and Vermont Law School in 2001.
Once the Judiciary Committee holds its hearing and votes on Rushlau's nomination, the full Senate will then vote on Rushlau's confirmation.
Rushlau was appointed district attorney for the four Midcoast counties in June 1993 by Republican Gov. John McKernan after then District Attorney William Anderson was appointed to a judgeship. He has since been elected and re-elected six times. Rushlau's current four-year term was set to expire at the end of 2018.