Scott Milne

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Leahy, Welch cruising to victory

BURLINGTON — Two of the three members of Vermont’s congressional delegation who were seeking re-election cruised to victory Tuesday and will return to Washington, D.C., in January. Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy, 76, the longest-serving member of the Senate, handily defeated Republican challenger Scott Milne. The Associated Press announced Leahy as the projected winner at 6:59 p.m., one minute before the polls closed in Vermont. With just 34 of 276 voting districts reporting results to the AP, Leahy led Milne by a 57 percent to 38 percent margin. Leahy’s win gives him an eighth term in the Senate, making him just the fifth person in U.S. history to be elected to eight, six-year terms.

“I’m here because you’ve honored me with six more years in the Senate,” Leahy told supporters at the Burlington Hilton where the Vermont Democratic Party held its election night event. Continue Reading →

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VPR poll shows tied gubernatorial race

MONTPELIER — Republican Phil Scott and Democrat Sue Minter are locked in a tie race for governor with three weeks to go and 14 percent of voters undecided, according to a Vermont Public Radio poll conducted by the Castleton Polling Institute released Wednesday. According to the poll results, Scott, the incumbent lieutenant governor, has a 1 percentage point lead over Sue Minter, a former secretary of the Agency of Transportation — 39 percent to 38 percent. Liberty Union candidate Bill Lee, a former pitcher for the Boston Red Sox and Montreal Expos, received 2 percent support. But 14 percent of the likely voters polled said they have yet to make up their mind. The poll of 650 likely voters has a 3.8 percent margin of error and includes live interviews from a mix of cell and land line phones. Continue Reading →

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Milne ad: Leahy has a sickness

MONTPELIER — Republican Scott Milne has released his first video ad against longtime U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, but the ad will only run online and not on television. Milne, the Republican who nearly toppled Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin in the 2014 gubernatorial race, has struggled to gain traction against Leahy, who is seeking his eighth term in Washington. Milne’s campaign has largely focused his campaign on attacking Leahy for being a “career politician.” Until this week he did not even have an issues section on his campaign website. In the 30-second video ad, Milne continues his assault on Leahy’s longevity in Washington. “Career Politician Patrick Leahy has caught the bug. Continue Reading →

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Minter, Leahy launch general election ads

Editor’s note: This story was updated at 1:15 p.m.

MONTPELIER — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Sue Minter is on the airwaves with her first general election television ad, while Democratic U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy has launched his first two television ads of the Senate campaign. Minter, a former secretary of the Agency of Transportation, launched an ad Tuesday that looks to highlight her management skills. It focuses on her work helping the state recover from Tropical Storm Irene and and serving on President Barack Obama’s Climate Preparedness and Resilience Task Force. A narrator lays out what Minter’s goals as governor will be. “As Governor, Sue Minter will make sure our children can stay and succeed here in Vermont with affordable education and livable wage jobs, a governor who will put Vermont families first,” the narrator says. Continue Reading →

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Kesha Ram launches bid for lieutenant governor

MONTPELIER — Burlington Democratic Rep. Kesha Ram says she is running for lieutenant governor, creating a Democratic Party primary for the state’s number two office. Ram, 29, joins 28-year-old Brandon Riker in the race, creating a youthful primary. The two are looking to replace Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Scott who is vacating the position and running for governor in 2016 election. Ram has significantly more political experience in Vermont than Riker. She is in her fourth term representing the Chittenden 6-4 district in Burlington after winning her first term at the age of 22. Continue Reading →

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Brock announces bid for lieutenant governor

MONTPELIER — Republican Randy Brock, a former auditor and state senator, said Thursday he is running for lieutenant governor. Brock, the GOP’s 2012 nominee for governor, announced his bid in a statement Thursday afternoon. He had also been considering a run for a Franklin County Senate seat but said the position of lieutenant governor fits his skills. “The lieutenant governor’s job offers the flexibility and the platform to become a catalyst for critical thinking and innovative ideas about how to achieve Vermont’s long-term promise,” he said. “I want to raise issues, generate ideas and get people in business, government and individuals talking with each other – across party and ideological lines.”

The Swanton resident was elected state auditor in 2004 and served one term before he lost his re-election bid to Thomas Salmon following a recount. Continue Reading →

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Potential candidates for governor abound

MONTPELIER — Gov. Peter Shumlin’s surprise announcement Monday that he will not seek re-election throws the 2016 gubernatorial election wide open — and several candidates on both sides of the aisle say they are interested. A potential surprise candidate emerged Monday when former Shumlin Chief of Staff Bill Lofy told the National Journal that Democratic Congressman Peter Welch “would be the prohibitive favorite” if he were to jump into the race. Welch has served as Vermont’s lone representative in the House since 2006, and has handily won re-election every two years. Welch Chief of Staff Bob Rogan said Monday that Welch will consider his options and has not ruled out a run for governor. “It’s likely Congressman Welch will seek re-election to Congress but this news comes as a surprise so he will be taking the time he needs to thoughtfully consider how he can best serve Vermonters,” Rogan said. Continue Reading →

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Shumlin says he will not seek re-election in 2016

MONTPELIER — Gov. Peter Shumlin announced Monday afternoon that he will not seek reelection, and will instead return to his hometown of Putney to resume his role in his student travel business. The announcement was made at the State House Monday, shortly after he informed his staff and cabinet members of his decision. Many of his current and past staff stood behind him as he told reporters of his plans. “I am announcing today that I will not be a candidate for a fourth term in 2016,” Shumlin said, after listing what he considers the successes of his tenure as the state’s chief executive. “I reached this decision after a lot of thought and consideration. Continue Reading →

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Shumlin elected to 3rd term by lawmakers

MONTPELIER — Vermont Lawmakers have re-elected Democratic Gov. Peter Shumlin to a third term, ending months of uncertainty since the mid-term election. Shumlin received 110 votes from the 180 members of the Democratic-led Legislature. Republican Scott Milne tallied 69 votes. The Legislature fulfilled its constitutional duty to elect a governor Thursday morning after no candidate received a majority of the popular vote in November. Shumlin, at the time, edged out Milne by just 2,434 votes, but only garnered about 46 percent of the votes cast. Continue Reading →

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Official tally shows Shumlin wins plurality; Milne has today to challenge

MONTPELIER – An official tally shows Gov. Peter Shumlin received 2,434 more votes than Republican challenger Scott Milne during last week’s election. Wednesday morning, the Canvassing Committee – consisting of representatives from the state Democrat, Liberty Union, progressive and Republican parties – met at the Sec. of State’s Office to sign off on official voter results, which confirmed the unofficial results that have been posted online for the past few days. Shumlin received 89,509 votes, compared with 87,075 for Milne, which gave Shumlin a 1.3-percent edge over his closest competitor. Libertarian candidate Dan Feliciano finished third in a field of seven with 8,428 votes. Continue Reading →

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