For the first time in recent memory, our fundamental rights rest not on the Supreme Court or Congress but on the people we choose to represent us in our state legislature. Bedrock principles of our democracy — the integrity of the process by which public officials are elected and the freedom to live our lives without government interference — will be decided by the candidates we choose for the Maine State House and Senate.

It is imperative that we elect state representatives who will ensure that all eligible voters are able to vote, that all votes will be counted, and that the will of the majority of voters will be respected and upheld. Because Maine’s Legislature makes the laws governing our elections and appoints the Secretary of State who safeguards the electoral process, it is critical that we elect candidates who will protect voting and election integrity.

The Maine Republican Platform lays out the Republicans’ intentions to limit voting and outlaw personal freedoms held dear by many Mainers. Maine Republicans have expressly revealed their intention to limit or outlaw reproductive services including abortion and certain forms of birth control, outlaw gay marriage, and repeal Maine’s Death with Dignity law. (The Maine Republican Platform states, “We believe in the sanctity of human life from conception to natural death.”)

To ensure that we live in a representative democracy and to keep the government from meddling in intimate aspects of our personal lives, we must elect representatives who have made it clear that they support these fundamental values.

Pinny Beebe-Center has a long track record of public service — in education, as a Knox Count commissioner, as a member of the Maine House Representatives, and working on issues as broad ranging as criminal justice, addiction, homelessness and marine resources. Her lifetime of commitment to justice demonstrates that she will represent us faithfully in the Maine State Senate.

Ann Matlack currently represents our district in the Maine House. She is chair of the state and local government committee and on the taxation committee. She is deeply committed to addressing the effects of climate change on the Maine economy, PFAs in our water and soil, and economic development.

Both have openly pledged to support election integrity, and to protect individual freedoms and privacy, and have earned my votes.

Jane Conrad

Tenants Harbor