Independent candidate Max Linn strays off topic during the Decision Maine debate in Portland on Sept. 11, 2020. Credit: Gabrielle Mannino / NEWS CENTER Maine

Former Maine U.S. Senate candidate Max Linn died of an apparent heart attack on Saturday, his lawyer confirmed.

Linn, 62, a retired financial planner who spent the core of his business career in Florida before emerging four years ago on the fringes of Maine politics, had a heart condition and died this weekend in a hot tub, Steven Juskewitch, his Ellsworth-based attorney, said on Monday.

A Bar Harbor resident, Linn most recently ran as a conservative independent in the 2020 Maine U.S. race, finishing in last place. He ran for several offices in the past, including Florida governor on the Reform Party ticket in 2006. Linn entered Maine politics in 2018, when he sought to face U.S. Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, but was disqualified from the Republican primary after his nominating petitions were found to have fraudulent signatures. 

He was facing legal issues after Matt McDonald, a former campaign staffer, accused Linn in October of pulling a gun on him in a dispute about cryptocurrency investment. The staffer requested a protection order. The case was supposed to go before an Ellsworth court in November, but it was postponed at that time. McDonald withdrew the protection order request earlier this month. Through attorneys, Linn denied the allegations and vowed to fight them in court.

Linn represented views from across the political spectrum during his time in politics. He ran for office both as a Democrat and independent in Florida and was firmly behind President Donald Trump, attending the rally at the U.S. Capitol that devolved into a riot on Jan. 6, 2021. 

He made headlines last year for his attention-grabbing debate theatrics. In the first debate of the race, he largely refused to answer pertinent questions, telling a moderator “request denied” when she asked him to stay on topic. He later cut up a mask during a debate as he ran a campaign calling for a hard line on immigration and backing student loan forgiveness.

He had visited Mount Desert Island for many years and spent his first winter on the island about five years ago.

Michael Shepherd

Michael Shepherd joined the Bangor Daily News in 2015 after three years as a reporter at the Kennebec Journal. A Hallowell native who now lives in Augusta, he graduated from the University of Maine in...