Joseph E. Brennan

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For other people named Joseph Brennan, see Joseph Brennan (disambiguation).
Joseph Brennan
Former Maine Governor Joe Brennan cropped.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Maine's 1st district
In office
January 7, 1987[1] – January 3, 1991
Preceded by Jock McKernan
Succeeded by Thomas Andrews
70th Governor of Maine
In office
January 3, 1979 – January 7, 1987
Preceded by Jim Longley
Succeeded by Jock McKernan
Attorney General of Maine
In office
January 2, 1975 – January 3, 1979
Governor Jim Longley
Preceded by Jon Lund
Succeeded by Richard Cohen
Personal details
Born Joseph Edward Brennan
(1934-11-02) November 2, 1934 (age 82)
Portland, Maine, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Constance Brennan
Children Two
Alma mater Boston College
University of Maine

Joseph Edward Brennan (born November 2, 1934) is an American Democratic Party politician from Maine. He served as the 70th Governor of Maine from 1979 to 1987. He is a former commissioner on the Federal Maritime Commission.

Born in 1934 in Portland, Maine, Brennan lived on Kellogg Street on Munjoy Hill.[2] Brennan attended Boston College and the University of Maine School of Law, and became Cumberland County District Attorney before winning election to the Maine House of Representatives (1965–1971) and the Maine Senate (1973–1975). His first statewide candidacy was for Governor in 1974; he lost the Democratic nomination to George J. Mitchell, who he would later appoint to the U.S. Senate. Appointed State Attorney General in 1975, Brennan ran for Governor again in 1978, winning the primary and general elections. Brennan was reelected in 1982, serving as Governor from 1979 to 1987. In 1986 he ran for the U.S. House in Maine's First Congressional District and won with 53% of the vote.

After two terms in the House, Brennan ran for Governor again in 1990, losing to Republican John McKernan. He ran again in 1994, losing to Independent Angus King, but placing second, ahead of Republican Susan Collins. He would face Collins in another statewide election in 1996, running for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Bill Cohen, a race which Collins won.

In 1999, President Bill Clinton nominated Brennan to serve as a commissioner on the Federal Maritime Commission, a small independent agency that regulates shipping between the U.S. and foreign countries. He was renominated (by President Bush) and confirmed for a second term at the FMC in 2004.

Electoral history[edit]

Maine U.S. Senate Election 1996
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Susan Collins 298,422 49.2
Democratic Joe Brennan 266,226 43.9
Green John Rensenbrink 23,441 3.9
Maine Gubernatorial Election 1994
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Independent Angus King 180,829 35
Democratic Joe Brennan 172,951 34
Republican Susan Collins 117,990 23
Maine Gubernatorial Election 1990
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican John R. McKernan 243,766 47% -
Democratic Joe Brennan 230,038 44% -
Independent Andrew Adam 48,377 9% -
Maine Gubernatorial Election 1982
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Joe Brennan 281,066 61% -
Republican Charles Cragin 172,949 38% -
Maine Gubernatorial Election 1978
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Joe Brennan 176,493 48% -
Republican Linwood E. Palmer, Jr. 126,862 34% -
Independent Herman Frankland 65,889 18% -


External links[edit]

Legal offices
Preceded by
Jon Lund
Attorney General of Maine
Succeeded by
Richard Cohen
Party political offices
Preceded by
George Mitchell
Democratic nominee for Governor of Maine
1978, 1982
Succeeded by
James Tierney
Preceded by
James Tierney
Democratic nominee for Governor of Maine
1990, 1994
Succeeded by
Tom Connolly
Political offices
Preceded by
Jim Longley
Governor of Maine
Succeeded by
Jock McKernan
United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Jock McKernan
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Maine's 2nd congressional district

Succeeded by
Thomas Andrews