|102nd Speaker of the Maine House of Representatives|
December 7, 2016 – December 2, 2020
|Preceded by||Mark Eves|
|Succeeded by||Ryan Fecteau|
|Member of the Maine House of Representatives|
from the 48th district
December 5, 2012 – December 2, 2020
|Preceded by||Charles Kruger|
|Succeeded by||Melanie Sachs|
|Born||December 4, 1971|
Rhode Island, U.S.
Benjamin Rogoff Gideon
|Education||George Washington University (BA)|
Sara I. Gideon (born December 4, 1971) is an American politician who served as the Speaker of the Maine House of Representatives. A member of the Democratic Party from Freeport, she represented the 48th district in the Maine House of Representatives, which includes part of Freeport and Pownal in Cumberland County.
Early life and education
Gideon is the youngest of four siblings, one of whom, Melanie, is a novelist. She graduated from East Greenwich High School in East Greenwich, Rhode Island, in 1989. In 1994, she earned a Bachelor of Arts in international affairs from George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs in Washington, D.C.
Maine House of Representatives
First elected to the Maine House of Representatives in 2012, Gideon was reelected in 2014 and chosen as Assistant Majority Leader. In 2016, she was elected as Speaker by the House. As speaker, Gideon also supported Medicaid expansion in Maine, including the 2017 referendum on the topic, and helped override Governor Paul LePage's veto of a bill to make the anti-overdose drug naloxone (Narcan) available over-the-counter, aimed at preventing deaths from the opioid epidemic.
Gideon was a member of the Legislature's Joint Standing Committee on Energy, Utilities and Technology. According to India Abroad, "she worked to lower energy costs, encourage increased energy efficiency and promote clean and renewable energy to capitalize on Maine's natural resources and build a clean-energy economy."
After Democratic Governor Janet Mills was elected in 2018, the Maine Legislature under Gideon's speakership passed several key climate change bills, including a measure requiring Maine to achieve 80 percent renewable energy by 2030 and 100 percent by 2050. As speaker in 2019 and 2020, Gideon also sponsored legislation to expand abortion access by allowing physician assistants and advanced practice registered nurses to perform the procedure. She sponsored legislation to block the Quebec power company Hydro-Québec from spending money to influence a referendum of a controversial proposed power line project in Maine.
In 2019, Gideon faced an election ethics complaint for accepting reimbursements for her personal political donations from her own PAC. A spokesperson said, "The contributions were within the legal limit and fully disclosed, but the committee was given incorrect guidance on how to process them." The campaign said that it had reimbursed the federal government $3,250 for the violations and closed the PAC. In October 2019, the Maine Ethics Commission voted unanimously to fine the closed PAC $500.
2020 U.S. Senate campaign
On June 24, 2019, Gideon announced her candidacy in the 2020 Senate election to challenge incumbent Republican Susan Collins. In the first week of her campaign, she raised more than $1 million. Gideon ran against Betsy Sweet and Bre Kidman in the ranked-choice Democratic primary election. In the primary, Gideon received support from the mainstream of the Democratic Party, while Sweet and Kidman drew support from the party's insurgent progressive wing. Before the July 14 primary, Gideon was endorsed by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee as well as labor unions and women's groups. Gideon led in primary election polling, and won the primary with roughly 70% of the vote. By the time of the primary election, she had raised $23 million.
In 2019, the League of Conservation Voters Action Fund endorsed Gideon. Following her Democratic primary win in June, Gideon received endorsements from NARAL, EMILY's List, Progressive Democrats of America, Brand New Congress, and Our Revolution. In August, former President Barack Obama endorsed Gideon. In 2020, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the country's largest LGBTQ rights advocacy organization, opposed the reelection of Susan Collins and instead endorsed Gideon. It is the first time that the HRC has opposed Collins, who has been seen as a key Republican vote on LGBTQ rights.
Gideon states that she has made affordable drugs and health care her primary campaign issues. She supports the Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare"). She also supports a public health insurance option, which would allow Americans to buy into Medicare while also retaining a private health insurance market. She supports allowing Medicare to negotiate lower prices for prescription drugs, and a prohibition on pharmaceutical company "pay to delay" agreements.
In the state House, Gideon sponsored legislation to expand abortion access and extend benefits to families in poverty. She states she will fight any attempts to attack or defund Planned Parenthood; will work to roll back the Title X gag rule, which has impacted Maine Family Planning and Planned Parenthood clinics. Gideon has been endorsed by Planned Parenthood Action Fund and NARAL. Gideon opposed the Trump tax bill. Gideon supports the U.S. rejoining the Paris Agreement to combat climate change; the U.S. entered the agreement under Barack Obama, but withdrew under Donald Trump. She supports government funding for the development of renewable energy (e.g. solar, wind, geo-thermal) and the federal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions. Gideon supports universal background checks and red flag laws, and has expressed support for high-capacity magazine restrictions. Gideon supports various police reforms, including a police misconduct registry and requirements for the use of body cameras and vehicle cameras.
|Democratic||Melanie F. Sachs||470||44.30%|
|Democratic||Patrick T. Norton||46||4.34%|
|Democratic||Sara Gideon (incumbent)||3,226||63.93%|
|Democratic||Sara Gideon (incumbent)||3,994||66.08%|
|Democratic||Sara Gideon (incumbent)||4,003||71.85%|
|Republican||Susan Collins (incumbent)||417,645||50.98%|
- "2020 Maine Sample Ballot" (PDF). maine.gov.
- "Maine House of Representatives: Sara Gideon". maine.gov. Retrieved December 15, 2014.
- Gardner, Kate (November 5, 2014). "Democrats Cooper, Gideon retain southern Maine House seats". The Forecaster. Bangor Daily News. Retrieved December 15, 2014.
- Porter, Steven (August 25, 2020). "Sara Gideon talks health care priorities with York Hospital staff". seacoastonline.com. Retrieved October 10, 2020.
- "Indian-American Sara Gideon announces bid to unseat longtime Maine Senator Susan Collins". IndiaAbroad.com. June 25, 2019. Retrieved November 15, 2019.
- Collins, Steve (September 21, 2020). "Sister's book offers a glimpse into Sara Gideon's past". Lewiston Sun Journal.
- "Who is Sara Gideon, Indian-origin Politician and Mom That Obama is Endorsing for US Senate?". News18. August 6, 2020. Retrieved October 10, 2020.
- McNamara, Elizabeth (June 25, 2019). "EGHS Alum Sara Gideon ('89) In Race for U.S. Senate in Maine". East Greenwich News. Retrieved February 22, 2020.
- "2014 Maine Elections: Sara Gideon". Portland Press Herald. Portland, ME. 2014.
- Touchberry, Ramsey (June 24, 2019). "Who Is Sara Gideon? Democrat Challenges Susan Collins, Cites Senator's Vote for Brett Kavanaugh". Newsweek.com. Retrieved June 24, 2019.
- "Sara Gideon". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved December 15, 2014.
- Andrade, Jane Carroll (June 6, 2018). "Maine House Speaker Sara Gideon". The Final Word. National Conference of State Legislatures. Retrieved June 24, 2019.
- Anderson, Amy (October 6, 2009). "Freeport Sewer District election draws 5 candidates; Town Council race uncontested". Portland Press Herald. Portland, ME.
- Cousins, Christopher (November 12, 2014). "Maine Democrats fill legislative leadership posts". Bangor Daily News. Bangor, ME.
- Scott Thistle (November 18, 2016). "Democrats pick Freeport's Rep. Sara Gideon to be next speaker of Maine House". Press Herald. Retrieved June 24, 2019.
- Jones, Sarah (June 24, 2019). "Susan Collins Has a New Democratic Challenger". The Cut. Retrieved August 5, 2019.
- Kamp, Jon (April 16, 2018). "Maine Lawmakers Clash With Governor Over Naloxone Access". Wall Street Journal.
- Piper, Jessica (June 28, 2020). "How the 3 Maine Democrats running for US Senate differ on voters' top priorities". Bangor Daily News.
- Wright, Patty (May 21, 2019). "Bill To Expand Abortion Providers In Maine Gets Ok In House". Maine Public Radio.
- Mistler, Steve (March 5, 2020). "Maine Bill Would Prevent Hydro-Quebec From Spending To Influence Referendum On Powerline". Maine Public Radio.
- Bowden, John (August 23, 2019). "Susan Collins challenger hit with ethics complaints over reimbursements". The Hill. Retrieved July 16, 2020.
- Andrews, Caitlin (October 30, 2019). "Maine ethics watchdog fines Sara Gideon's political committee over reimbursed contributions". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved August 24, 2020.
- Pindell, James (June 24, 2019). "Sara Gideon, speaker of the Maine House, to challenge Susan Collins". The Boston Globe. Retrieved June 24, 2019.
- "Sara Gideon touts early fundraising success in run for Senate seat". WABI-TV. Associated Press. July 3, 2019. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
- Everett, Burgess (August 26, 2019). "Inside Susan Collins' reelection fight in the age of Trump". Politico.
- Ackley, Kate (July 14, 2020). "DSCC-backed Sara Gideon wins primary to face Sen. Susan Collins in Maine". Roll Call.
- Cochrane, Emily (July 14, 2020). "Sara Gideon Wins Nomination to Challenge Susan Collins in Maine". The New York Times.
- Rich, Aliyah (November 14, 2019). "LCV Action Fund Endorsers Sara Gideon for Senate". LCV (Press release). Retrieved August 20, 2020.
- "Sara Gideon". Ballotpedia. Retrieved July 30, 2020.
- Fink, Jenni (August 7, 2020). "Trump-Backed Collins Trails Obama-Endorsed Gideon in Maine Senate Race". Newsweek. Retrieved August 8, 2020.
- Weigel, David (July 15, 2020). "Major LGBTQ rights group breaks with Sen. Susan Collins, endorses Democratic opponent Sara Gideon". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 20, 2020.
- press release. "Bangor Daily News Editorial Board: "Sara Gideon is the strongest choice in Democratic US Senate Primary"". Bangor Daily News. Retrieved October 30, 2020.
- Leary, Mal (December 2, 2019). "Sara Gideon On The Issues That Are Most Important To Maine Democrats". Maine Public Radio.
- Prignano, Christina (July 15, 2020). "Who is Sara Gideon? A look at the Democratic challenger to Maine's Susan Collins". Boston Globe.
- Saul, Stephanie (June 24, 2019). "Sara Gideon to Challenge Susan Collins for Maine Senate Seat". The New York Times. Retrieved August 5, 2019.
- "Sara Gideon's Issue Positions". Vote Smart. Retrieved July 30, 2020.
- Troutman, Caitlin (August 20, 2019). "Maine 'Moms Demand Action' Advocates For Gun Control Legislation". Maine Public Radio.
- Casale, Mary-Erin (March 1, 2018). "Gideon Remarks at Maine Gun Safety Coalition Event". Maine Legislature. Retrieved August 8, 2020.
- "Ben Gideon".
- Albair, Rebecca (July 2, 2012). "6-12-2012 Primary Election Representative to Legislature - Democratic" (XLSX). Maine Bureau of Corporations, Elections & Commissions. Retrieved March 15, 2020.
- "November 6, 2012 General Election Tabulations State Representative by District and Town". Maine Bureau of Corporations, Elections & Commissions. November 2012. Retrieved March 15, 2020.
- Albair, Rebecca (November 13, 2014). "Representative to the Legislature" (XLSX). Maine Bureau of Corporations, Elections & Commissions. Retrieved March 15, 2020.
- Packard, Melissa (November 18, 2016). "Representative to the Legislature" (XLSX). Maine Bureau of Corporations, Elections & Commissions. Retrieved March 15, 2020.
- Lajoie, Louisa (November 30, 2018). "State Representative" (XLSX). Maine Bureau of Corporations, Elections & Commissions. Retrieved March 15, 2020.
- "Maine U.S. Senate Democratic Primary". Maine Secretary of State. August 8, 2020. Retrieved August 8, 2020.
- "November 3, 2020 General Election". Maine Department of Secretary of State. Retrieved December 24, 2020.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sara Gideon.|
- Sara Gideon for Maine official campaign website
- Sara Gideon government website
- Sara Gideon at Ballotpedia