Jon Hinck, the at-large Portland city councilor and former state representative who has been stating his intention to run for a Portland-area Senate seat for months, said Wednesday that he missed Tuesday’s deadline to qualify as a candidate. He said he forgot to submit paperwork and petition signatures to the Maine secretary of state’s office.
Hinck’s candidacy would have set up a four-person primary for the District 27 Senate seat, which is currently held by Senate Minority Leader Justin Alfond. Alfond is being forced out of office by term limits.
In response to questions from the BDN on Wednesday, Hinck messaged “Fact is, I failed to get our petitions with 137 signatures, verified two weeks ago, in to the Secretary of State. Ouch.”
Candidates for state Senate are required to collect between 100 and 150 petition signatures to qualify for the ballot. Non-party candidates have until June 1 to file their petitions and must collect between 200 and 300 signatures.
“I do not know what to say,” wrote Hinck to the BDN. “I have already been to a good thousand doors and spoken with 310 Democrats at their homes in Portland. I told them all that I was running and wanted their voteds I almost feel like I have to retrace my steps.”
Also running in the Democratic primary are Reps. Diane Russell and Ben Chipman, as well as Charles Radis. The winner of that contest on June 14 would likely appear on the general election ballot with Green Independent Seth Baker and Republican Mark Lockman.
Candidates who are not enrolled in either the Democratic, Republican or Green Independent parties have until June 1 to submit nomination papers to the secretary of state.