November 14, 2018

Has Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine Endorsed Angus King or Not?

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It appears there’s much confusion in the last couple of days as to whether the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine is endorsing independent Angus King for the U.S. Senate or not. I was the recipient of an email that listed some exchanges and a photograph of what appears to be an endorsement of King by David Trahan, Executive Director of SAM. I’ll share those below, including the photo.

October 16, 2012 – The following email was sent to Becky at Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine:

Hi Becky, I received a political card from Angus King with an endorsement from SAM. I find it a little perplexing to learn that David Trahan, as Executive Director of a 14,000 member organization, is supporting an independent instead of a Republican for U.S. Senate when it is imperative to the survival of our country that we have a majority in the U.S. Senate so we can kick Harry Reid out of his majority leadership seat & get our country back under Mitt Romney.

Disappointed ___________

Assuming the above email went to a number of undisclosed recipients, here is a response to this topic by Rep. Jonathan McKane, House District 51:

Not true – SAM did not endorse Angus or any candidate. SAM said that all of the candidates were good candidates. It appears that Angus changed the quote.

And Rep. McKane posted the following news article which can be found in the Kennebec Journal for verification. The Kennebec Journal article is dated September 24, 2012:

Maine sportsman’s group endorses Courtney

September 24, 2012, 1:57 pm

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — The largest hunting and fishing advocacy group in Maine is endorsing Republican Jon Courtney in the 1st Congressional District race, but isn’t endorsing anybody in the 2nd District or Senate races.

The Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine interviewed Democratic U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud and his 2nd District Republican challenger, Kevin Raye, as well as Republican Charlie Summers and independent Angus King in the Senate race.

SAM Executive Director David Trahan said the alliance’s board of directors decided that Michaud, Raye, Summers and King were all “friends” of the alliance and decided to not give an endorsement in those races.

For the 1st District race, the board endorsed GOP candidate Jon Courtney, who is running against Democratic incumbent Chellie Pingree. Trahan said Pingree did not respond to the alliance’s questionnaire.

In addition, on the 17th of October another email goes out asking someone, who’s name I will not show, to seek a retraction of the endorsement by SAM from Angus King, shown in the photo above.

______, please see attached PDF showing SAM endorsement of Angus King. David [Trahan] needs to have Angus do a retraction before the Nov. 6th election. The stakes are too high.

Sportsmen might like to know if, in fact, SAM or David Trahan personally, is endorsing Angus King for U.S. Senate. In addition, did Angus King take liberties with something Trahan might have said, and present it as an endorsement by SAM?

The photo shows other so-called “Outdoor Leader Endorsements”, that I take as personal endorsements, even though who each person might be affiliated with or represent is shown. The question becomes, is this shown endorsement an official endorsing of Angus King by the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine or is it a personal endorsement of David Trahan’s?…..or neither? I think clarification on this would be imperative heading into an election in less than 3 weeks.

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