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Harpswell Democratic Rep. Saxton drops out of House District 51 race

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Harpswell Democratic Rep. Saxton drops out of House District 51 race

HARPSWELL — First-term state Rep. Jeremy Saxton, D-Harpswell, will not seek re-election in November.

In an interview Monday, Saxton said he decided to bow out to spend more time with his family and to help run the marina his family owns on Basin Point in South Harpswell. 

In addition, his daughter is will start attending North Yarmouth Academy this year, and Saxton said he wants to be able to be there to spend time with her, he said. 

"I think we all struggle with trying to find the time to do everything," Saxton said, explaining his decision to drop out of the race. 

Saxton was unopposed in the June 10 Democratic primary in House District 51, which covers Harpswell, West Bath and parts of Brunswick. Democrats will caucus to select a new candidate at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, July 14, at the Harpswell Land Trust, 153 Harpswell Neck Road (Route 123).

Their choice will face Brunswick Republican Byron Watson in the general election.

Saxton said he has not decided if he will endorse a candidate at the caucus.

A lifelong Harpswell resident, Saxton was elected to his seat in 2012, when he narrowly defeated incumbent Republican Rep. Kimberly Olsen. 

Saxton sat on the Legislature's Marine Resources Committee and co-sponsored bills aimed at supporting the state's shellfish and lobster industries, among others.

He said he is particularly proud of helping to pass a law establishing a state commission to study ocean acidification and its effects in Maine. 

"I think it is a major concern we all need to look at," Saxton said. "Not just from the marine side, but as a state."

Peter L. McGuire can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 100 or pmcguire@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter @mcguiremidcoast.