Maine House of Representatives
The Maine House of Representatives is the lower house of the Maine Legislature. The House consists of 151 members (excluding three nonvoting members) representing an equal number of districts across the state. Each voting member of the House represents around 8,800 citizens of the state. Because it is a part-time position, members of the Maine House of Representatives usually have outside employment as well. Members are limited to four consecutive terms of two years each, but may run again after two years.
Maine House of Representatives
|Maine State Legislature|
|4 Terms (8 years)|
New session started
|December 5, 2018|
|Seats||151 (and 1 non-voting)|
Length of term
|Authority||Article IV, Part First, Maine Constitution|
|Salary||Session 1: $13,526/year|
Session 2: $9,661/year + per diem
|November 6, 2018|
|November 3, 2020|
|House of Representatives Chamber|
Maine State House
|Maine House of Representatives|
Leadership of the HouseEdit
The Speaker of the House presides over the House of Representatives. The Speaker is elected by the majority party caucus followed by confirmation of the full House through the passage of a House Resolution. In addition to presiding over the body, the Speaker is also the chief leadership position, and controls the flow of legislation and committee assignments. Other House leaders, such as the majority and minority leaders, are elected by their respective party caucuses relative to their party's strength in the chamber.
Composition of the 129th Maine House of RepresentativesEdit
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
|Begin 126th Legislature||58||89||0||4||151||0|
|End 126th Legislature||57||150||1|
|Begin 127th Legislature||68||79||0||4||151||0|
|End 127th Legislature||69||78|
|Begin 128th Legislature||72||77||0||2||151||0|
|End 128th Legislature||70||73||1||6||150||1|
|Begin 129th Legislature||57||89||0||5||151||0|
|December 5, 2018||88||150||1|
|January 4, 2018||56||6|
|February 2, 2019||87||149||2|
|March 12, 2019||88||150||1|
|Latest voting share||37.3%||58.7%||0%||4%|
Nonvoting members of the HouseEdit
The three nonvoting members within the House represent the Penobscot Nation, the Passamaquoddy Tribe and the Maliseet Tribe. The special Representatives can sponsor legislation relating specifically to the Tribes or in relation to Tribal - State land claims, as well as co-sponsor any other legislation brought before the House, but do not cast a legislative vote due to their unique tribal status representing their tribal members only. The Penobscot, Passamaquoddy and Maliseet tribal representatives are also entitled to sit as members of joint standing committees during hearings and deliberations, where they do cast votes, which can be very important with respect to specific legislative proposals.
Starting with the 126th Legislature, the Houlton Band of Maliseets was given a legislative seat in the House of Representatives. The first elected occupant of the seat is Henry John Bear. After being sworn in by Governor Paul LePage, Bear stated he would introduce legislation to give the Micmac people of Maine a nonvoting seat.
The Passamaquoddy and Penobscots announced at a State House rally on May 26, 2015 that they would withdraw their representatives from the Legislature, citing disputes over tribal fishing rights, jurisdictional issues, and a lack of respect for tribal sovereignty. They further cited an executive order by Governor Paul LePage that rescinded a prior order requiring consultation with the tribes on state issues that affected them as a reason for their decision. Subsequently, Matthew Dana II of the Passamaquoddy and Wayne Mitchell of the Penobscot left the legislature leaving Henry John Bear of the Maliseet the only non-voting tribal representative. In response, Speaker Eves said that the tribal representatives are always welcome in the House. Matthew Dana II returned to the House from the Passamaquoddy Tribe in the 2016 elections.
The Maliseets chose not to send a Representative to the 129th Legislature, elected in 2018. As of the 2018 election, the Penobscots haven't returned to the House, leaving just the Passamaquoddy Representative, Rena Newell.
Independents and other partiesEdit
Due to the independent political tradition in the state, the Maine House of Representatives has been an entry ground for several of the state's prominent Independent politicians. From 2002 to 2006, Representative John Eder of Portland (District 118), belonging to the Maine Green Independent Party, served in the Legislature, the highest elected Green politician in U.S. politics at that time. Eder secured recognition as a one-member Green Party caucus in the House, receiving a dedicated staff person, which is unusual for individual legislators in the Maine House. In the 2006 elections, Eder lost his seat to a Democratic challenger.
On September 21st, 2017, Ralph Chapman, previously registered as an independent, switched his registration to the Maine Green Independent Party, the first time in over a decade that the Maine Green Independent Party was represented at the state level.
|Speaker of the House||Sara Gideon||Democratic||Freeport|
|Majority Leader||Matt Moonen||Democratic||Portland|
|Majority Whip||Ryan Fecteau||Democratic||Biddeford|
|Minority Leader||Kathleen Dillingham||Republican||Oxford|
|Minority Whip||Harold "Trey" L. Stewart III||Republican||Presque Isle|
Members of the Maine House of RepresentativesEdit
Districts are currently numbered starting with 1 from south to north. This is reversed after each decennial redistricting, which will next occur in 2021 and will go into effect beginning with the 2022 primary and general elections. The current district lines, which were drawn in 2013 and were first used in the 2014 primary and general elections, will only be in effect for 8 years rather than the usual 10 as Maine adjusts its legislative redistricting cycle to conform with most other states.
↑ denotes that the Representative first won in a special election
|Passamaquoddy Tribe||Rena Newell||Dem||Princeton||2026|
|Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians||Vacant|
Past composition of the House of RepresentativesEdit
- The Houlton Band of Maliseets and Penobscot Nation have both withdrawn their non-voting Representatives to the Maine House of Representatives. The other vacancy is the seat of Jennifer DeChant, who resigned to take a position in the private sector.
- Elected under the party label "Common Sense Independent"
- Rep. Aaron Frey (D-124) resigns after being elected Attorney General of Maine.
- Rep. Don Marean (R-16) resigns the Republican caucus to become an independent.
- Rep. Jennifer DeChant (D-52) resigns to take a position in the private sector.
- Joe Perry (D) elected to replace Aaron Frey (D-124).
- Bayly, Julia (January 26, 2012). "Houlton Maliseet, first elected tribal representative to Maine House, looking forward to session". Bangor Daily News.
- Moretto, Mario (May 26, 2015). "Passamaquoddy, Penobscot tribes withdraw from Maine Legislature". Bangor Daily News.
- "Tribal Representatives to the Maine Legislature, 1823 -".
- House Leadership Links