Kevin Raye moves up to ‘Young Gun’ status

Maine Senate President Kevin Raye, who is challenging Democratic Congressman Mike Michaud in the state’s Second District, has moved up two rungs on the National Republican Congressional Committee’s “Young Guns” ladder.

Raye, 51, is now considered a “Young Gun” in the Republican campaign committee’s program that identifies and supports candidates the committee sees as promising. Raye was previously a “Contender” in the program. The Young Gun label is the top rung of the ladder

Raye’s move to Young Gun status follows a poll released this week by Critical Insights and MaineToday Media that shows he’s trailing Michaud by a 47-35 margin. Raye also was trailing Michaud in fundraising at the end of May, but the National Republican Congressional Committee’s focus on his race could make a difference in narrowing that gap.

The announcement that he’s moved into the top tier of Republican challengers is good news for Raye, but the announcement makes no mention of Maine Senate Majority leader Jon Courtney, who’s challenging Congresswoman Chellie Pingree in the state’s First District.