OXFORD – Even after the two big towns in the district had tallied their votes, putting Caldwell Jackson of Oxford in the lead for county commissioner, he couldn’t relax.

At 10:30 p.m., with the noise of the television airing national and state election results behind him, Jackson said by telephone, “I am very tense.”

He wasn’t ready to call it a win. “I’m feeling good, but I never do anything until all the votes are in,” Jackson said.

Jackson, a Republican selectman from Oxford, ran against Wade Rainey, a Democratic selectman from West Paris, for the third seat on the Oxford County Commission. The commissioners cover three districts in the county, and Jackson and Rainey competed for District 3, which includes Albany Township, Buckfield, Greenwood, Hebron, Otisfield, Oxford, Paris, Stoneham, West Paris and Woodstock.

With Oxford, Paris, Woodstock and Stoneham votes in, Caldwell had 2,530 votes and Rainey had 1,620 – a 910 vote difference.

But West Paris, Rainey’s hometown where he has served as selectman for 15 years, had not yet tallied its votes by 11 p.m.

“West Paris is a slow counting, and they do everything by hand,” Rainey said. “They had a big turnout. At this point, it depends on the small towns that come in.”

Rainey said he does not think he campaigned as much as Jackson, a factor Jackson acknowledged, too.

“Wade Rainey is a real nice person, I had nothing bad to say about him, he had nothing bad to say about me,” Jackson said. “I did the calling and knocking on doors, going to a lot of functions,” he said, as well as a mailing and media advertisement.

Rainey wished Jackson luck.

“People vote the way they want to, for whatever reason,” Rainey said. “If Caldie wins, he will make a very good county commissioner.”


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