AUGUSTA, Maine — It will be mostly business as usual with some pandemic alterations when Maine’s presidential electors get together on Monday.
Four presidential electors will still meet in the chamber of the Maine House of Representatives to officially cast the state’s votes for president and vice president, but they will likely be among the few people in the large room and they must all wear masks.
Observers are typically allowed in the chamber to watch the proceedings, but not this year due to the State House being closed to the public, said Kristen Muszynski, a spokesperson for Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap. Media will be allowed to attend and a livestream will be available for interested parties to watch.
The electors are set to cast three votes for president-elect Joe Biden and vice president-elect Kamala Harris and one for President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence after the Democratic nominee carried the state last month. Trump will be awarded one vote because of his performance in the swing 2nd Congressional District. Maine is one of two states that splits its electoral votes by congressional district, along with Nebraska.
The 2016 vote was historic as one elector, David Bright of Dixmont, initially tried to cast a vote for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders instead of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, but eventually backed Clinton as required by state law. It marked the first time since 1828 that Maine had split its electoral college votes.
The electoral college will meet at 2 p.m. Monday. Bright, who is also a 2020 elector, said Monday he intends to vote for Biden. The other two Democratic electors are high-school senior Jay Philbrick of North Yarmouth and incoming Secretary of State Shenna Bellows, D-Manchester. The Republican elector is former Oxford selectman Peter Laverdiere.