Recent University alum Jeremy Fischer upset long-time Republican incumbent Richard Duncan in the race for representative in the state House of Maine last Tuesday. The 22-year-old Democrat said he will greatly contrast the 70-year-old Duncan in his representation of his hometown of Presque Isle, the 145th district of Maine.

Graduating just this past spring from the University of Michigan, Fischer majored in political science and was a semi-finalist for the Rhodes Scholarship Trust. While he was never involved in student government at the University, he said he always planned to run as a state representative. The variety of perspectives he encountered and opportunities he experienced at the University influenced the approach he will take as representative, he said.

Fischer spent summers working in Washington, where he established a connection with the current governor of Maine, Angus Spring, who aided him in his political endeavors. While many students spent their Spring Break on vacation, Fischer went home to pursue his campaign.

“I went to every door twice. It was a lot of houses and a lot of time, but I met lots of people and it was a great opportunity,” he said.

Going to more than 6,000 houses in five months, Fischer attributes his victory to hard work.

“Voters liked my energy and my work effort,” Fischer said.

He said that by interacting with the people in his district he not only increased his popularity, but he also increased his awareness of issues relevant to his district. As a result, he gained a powerful perspective on their problems.

“I had some idea of their problems, but didn’t have a personal side to it. When a person tells you that they must choose between heating oil, food and prescription drugs, you get a perspective you don’t have when simply leading a normal life,” Fischer said.

Moreover, the young Democrat is one of the youngest representatives in the history of the Maine House and the legislation he plans to implement will be new to his traditionally Republican district.

He said that Maine has a $240 million deficit that must be amended. Concurrently, Fischer intends to improve health care by establishing universal coverage in Maine. He also said he wants to pursue legislation to establish a system of community colleges, which Maine does not have.

As for the future, Fischer does not have defined plans.

“I’m taking it one day at a time. I’m just taking advantage of what I have right now,” he said.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.