UMaine could benefit from Emily Cain’s election to the House of Reps.

Over the years, Senator Susan Collins has done wonders in providing crucial funding for many UMaine projects. Although not a UMaine grad, she has understood the importance to UMaine of federal funds. Interestingly, she has done far more in this regard than Olympia Snowe, a UMaine grad, ever did.
If Emily Cain’s second attempt to be elected to the House of Representatives is successful, she will be in a position to bring federal funds to her alma mater. To be sure, one cannot expect a first-term Representative to have the clout of a by now senior Senator.
But, no less important, Emily Cain understands the need to try to overcome the war on public higher education that has been waged in Maine and elsewhere in recent decades. Where public colleges and universities were traditionally seen by most Americans—and by most state and federal elected officials–as a public good, nowadays that is hardly the case. So many governors and state and national Representatives and Senators have worked overtime to undermine public higher education: not only by vastly reducing state and federal support but also by condemning any and all courses, departments, colleges, and, above all, faculty whose principal purpose is not job creation. Most of those folks are ignorant of the fact that the 1862 Morrill Land-Grant Act that brought about UMaine and other public universities was not hostile toward the liberal arts despite the Act’s principal focus on agriculture and engineering. Far from it: the classics were highly valued and were seen as complementing, not conflicting with, practical pursuits.
Former Second District Representative Mike Michaud lacked this perspective, and not simply because he never attended college. Current Representarive Bruce Poliquin does not appear to have any greater grasp of these issues. His loyalty here and elsewhere is to the private sector.
Consequently, one need not be a Democrat to appreciate that UMaine could benefit in untold ways by electing Emily Cain—a Phi Beta Kappa UMaine graduate, by the way–to the House of Representatives.