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RATINGS CHANGE: Maine Governor

Democratic Rep. Michael H. Michaud’s decision to explore a gubernatorial bid in Maine is a good example of competing interests of campaign committees.

Michaud leaves behind a potentially competitive 2nd District, an open seat that could be difficult for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee to hold. But strategists at the Democratic Governors Association are ecstatic. They believe Michaud’s unique appeal can thread the needle in a potentially complicated gubernatorial race.

Michaud not only is taking on Republican Gov. Paul R. LePage, but he must also take votes from independent Eliot Cutler, who finished second in 2010. That year, Cutler and the Democratic nominee divided the vote in such a way that LePage was elected with 38 percent.

Cutler is running again and there is the potential for another three-way race that could allow LePage to get re-elected with less than 40 percent. But this race looks like it is trending away from the GOP.

We’re moving the race from Pure Tossup to Tossup/Tilt Democrat in the Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call ratings.

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