Former U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin, a Republican running to return to his former seat in Maine's 2nd District, fields questions from reporters at the Portland International Jetport on Nov. 27, 2018. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Former U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin bought a home in Orrington this fall ahead of a likely 2022 rematch with Rep. Jared Golden.

The Waterville native announced his plans to run in the 2nd Congressional District again earlier this year. He purchased a two-bedroom, 1,600-square-foot home in the Penobscot County town in early October for $310,000, property records show.

Poliquin, a Republican, said this fall that he planned to move to the Bangor area, citing its geographic centrality within the sprawling 2nd District. He previously ran out of Oakland when he was first elected to the seat in 2014 and also owns a waterfront home in the 1st District town of Georgetown.

He was narrowly ousted by Golden, a Democrat, in 2018 in the first general election in Maine decided by ranked-choice voting. But 2022 looks to be a friendlier national environment for Republicans, who have made Golden a top target in their efforts to take back control of the U.S. House. The race has already attracted significant outside spending.

The former congressman first has to make it through a crowded Republican primary, although he remains the solid favorite, having raised nearly $900,000 as of the end of September. State Rep. Mike Perkins, R-Oakland, announced last week that he would drop out of the race due to health challenges following a COVID-19 infection. Caratunk selectman Liz Caruso and political newcomers Garrett Swazey of Bangor and Sean Joyce of Newburgh have also filed to run.