Since the election on Nov. 6, Jared Golden’s behavior has been a model of civility. He beat Bruce Poliquin fair and square. The courts have upheld Maine’s ranked-choice voting system through several challenges and one judge even said RCV improves citizens’ First Amendment rights by allowing them to state their opinions of all candidates, not being forced into “strategic voting.”

Poliquin has used every lame argument imaginable to try to overturn ranked-choice voting and regain his seat in Congress, but has failed each time. His one concession was based on practicality, not civility: he stopped the recount after several weeks when it became clear that he will have to pay for it since the result isn’t changing and it was clear that he would lose (again).

Golden’s behavior has been just what anyone would expect from a gentleman. He has not uttered a bad word about his defeated opponent. He has continued to say that Poliquin is within his rights to make all his challenges. He has said exactly what anyone would expect from an elected official who wants to stop the partisan gridlock that is keeping the government from doing what it is supposed to do.

I am proud of Golden and I am proud of the state of Maine for electing him.

Poliquin could learn a lesson from Golden by participating in a smooth transition and not challenging the election in the Supreme Court.

Ben Lounsbury, Auburn

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