‘A Bold Champion For Progressive Change’: State Representative Mike Sylvester (D-39) Endorses Betsy Sweet For U.S. Senate

Rep. Sylvester  joins a list of prominent activists and national organizations endorsing Sweet, including Susan Sarandon, Blue America, Our Revolution, Marianne Williamson, Justice Democrats, Brand New Congress, Friends of Earth Action, Democracy for America, and Progressive Democrats of America

AUGUSTA, MAINE — State Representative Mike Sylvester of Portland announced his endorsement of Betsy Sweet for U.S. Senate in Maine. Sweet is a longtime progressive advocate who is leading the fight for Medicare for All and a Green New Deal. She seeks to unseat Maine’s long-time U.S. Senator, Republican Susan Collins.

Sylvester is a two-term state representative and the only Democratic Socialist in the Maine Legislature. Sylvester is the House Chair of the Joint Committee on Labor and Housing. In this role, he helped to pass workers’ compensation reform, statewide paid time off, and a bill to legalize the rights of loggers to organize unions. Sylvester joins a list of other prominent advocates and national organizations endorsing Sweet, including: Justice Democrats, Susan Sarandon, Our Revolution, Brand New Congress, Marianne Williamson, Democracy for America, Progressive Democrats for America, and Blue America.

Statement from Rep. Michael Sylvester on his endorsement of Betsy Sweet for U.S. Senate:

“I am endorsing Betsy Sweet for Senator because, in this time of crisis, everyone can see our current system struggle to take care of the basic needs of its citizens. We need a Senator who puts the well being of everyday Mainers above the profits of the insurance and pharmaceutical companies, or the convenient politics of the moment. If you can’t see a doctor without someone having to make a profit on their stock dividends, then there is a problem. Betsy and I have both fought for a public system where everyone is in and nobody is out. Every Mainer deserves healthcare. That’s why I am voting for Betsy Sweet.”

In her announcement speech, Sweet described protecting women’s reproductive rights, passing Medicare For All, barring corporate money from state and federal elections, and taking bold action on the climate crisis as central in her decision to run for the Democratic nomination against Senator Collins. She argued that Maine voters are not seeing their demands met in Washington, pointing to Senator Collins’ perceived allegiance with President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as a key reason why. 

Sweet has pledged to refuse dark money, federal lobbying, and corporate PAC money.

A former director of the Maine Women’s Lobby and the Maine Commission for Women, as well as a small business owner, Sweet has spent her career advocating for people with disabilities, the elderly, women, children, and low-income individuals and families. Sweet helped write and pass the first Family Medical Leave Act in the nation. Ten years later, she was instrumental in writing and passing Maine’s Clean Elections Act, another first for the country.  She gained statewide prominence in 2018, when she ran in the Democratic primary for Governor as the only clean elections candidate.