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Maine Republicans Elect New Chairman | Shop Talk

Maine Republicans elected Rick Bennett as their new state party chairman last week. The previous chairman, Richard Cebra, abruptly resigned in early July.

Bennett emphasized party unity in a note to supporters.

“I am honored to have Governor Paul LePage’s enthusiastic endorsement as State Party Chairman,” he wrote. “And I have been humbled by the support from Senator Susan Collins, from our Maine House and Senate Leadership, and from many, many grassroots activists from all across our state and all across our party’s broad spectrum.”

He added that his priority would be to win back control of the state legislature.

Bennett unsuccessfully ran for the 2012 GOP nomination to replace retiring Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe.

Additionally, Republican state Rep. Alex Willette’s campaign for the open-seat 2nd District House seat recently named 2012 GOP Senate nominee Charlie Summers as a campaign chairman.

Sevugan Signs On With Spitzer

Two Obama presidential campaign veterans, Hari Sevugan and Lis Smith, recently joined former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer’s campaign for New York City comptroller.

Smith worked on Obama’s 2012 campaign in rapid response. She is also a former spokeswoman for the Democratic Governors Association.

Earlier this month, Sevugan joined Spitzer’s campaign as a spokesman. Sevugan was recently a vice president of communications for StudentsFirst, an education advocacy organization led by the former chancellor of Washington, D.C., public schools, Michelle Rhee.

Sevugan is also a former Democratic National Committee press secretary and spokesman for the Obama 2008 presidential campaign.

Margolies Builds Campaign Team

Former Rep. Marjorie Margolies, D-Pa., signed Don “DA” Jones as a senior adviser for her congressional comeback campaign.

Jones has worked on local, statewide and presidential campaigns for two decades in Pennsylvania — including on Margolies’ first House race. Pennsylvania Democratic operative Dylan McGarry also signed on to the campaign “to put together the district-wide field operation and manage the day-to-day operations of the campaign,” according to a release.

Margolies served a single term in Congress from 1993 to 1995. She lost re-election after casting the deciding vote for President Bill Clinton’s 1993 economic plan.

Margolies is running in the open-seat race to replace Democratic Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz, who is running for governor in 2014.

Located in Montgomery County and the city of Philadelphia, the 13th District is safe Democratic territory; a highly competitive Democratic primary is shaping up.

Action News

The American Action Forum, a center-right nonprofit organization, hired Marisol Garibay as its new deputy communications director. Garibay comes to the AAF from the Organization for International Investment, where she was a communications director. Before that job, she was the communications director for the House Financial Services Committee and a special assistant for banking and finance at the Treasury Department.

Thompson to Bipartisan Policy Center

Former Wisconsin GOP Gov. Tommy Thompson joined the Bipartisan Policy Center as a senior fellow with the group’s health project, which concentrates on bipartisan health care changes. Thompson attempted to make a return to office last year but lost his Senate bid to Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin.

The BPC was created by a group of former Senate majority leaders, including Howard Baker, R-Tenn., Tom Daschle, D-S.D., Bob Dole, R-Kan., and George Mitchell, D-Maine.

Pike’s New Peak

Jill Pike Bolger announced over email last week that she would soon begin work with the Glover Park Group as a vice president in the firm’s strategic communications division. She leaves the moderate think tank the Third Way.

Jameson’s New Shot

Jameson Cunningham announced over email that he signed on as Rep. Randy Hultgren’s, R-Ill., new communications director. He leaves his position as account executive at Shirley & Banister Public Affairs.

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