MOUNT DESERT ISLAND — Voters here largely agreed with voters statewide on Tuesday, confirming primary frontrunners and voting in favor of implementing ranked-choice voting sooner rather than later.
About 34 percent of the registered voters in the four Mount Desert Island towns, Swans Island, Trenton, the Cranberry Isles and Frenchboro took to the polls in their respective towns. That’s more than 3,700 people. Voters reported lines in many polling places but no problematic long waits. Most were pleased to see the high turnout.
The MDI-area voting population was about 68 percent in favor of Question 1, the people’s veto of a new law delaying the implementation of ranked-choice voting. Voters statewide were less sure, with 55 percent approving the question.
Two towns, Swans Island and Frenchboro, voted against Question 1.
Ian Schwartz of Mount Desert had a strong showing in the Democratic primary, earning 883 votes, or 44 percent of the MDI-area party vote, but incumbent Louie Luchini pulled ahead. At press time, Luchini leads Schwartz by more than 1,000 votes overall.
For the primary races, which were the first to use RCV, preliminary results here were in line with the overall state results.
Shawn Moody, who already has been called as the winner in the Republican gubernatorial primary with more than 50 percent of first-choice votes, won 52 percent of the first-choice votes in MDI-area towns.
On the Democratic side, voters identified the three leaders in the gubernatorial race, Adam Cote, Janet Mills and Elizabeth Sweet. Cote won the first-choice vote here with 29 percent, but he trails Mills slightly statewide, with Sweet behind them in third.
Sweet and Mills both received about 26 percent of the votes here, with Mills beating Sweet by eight first-choice votes.
Democrat Zak Ringelstein and Republican Eric Brakey ran unopposed in their primaries and will challenge Angus King for his U.S. Senate seat.