(1955- ), a U.S. Representative was born in Bangor on January 30, 1955. He graduated Bangor High School, 1973 and received a B.A. from the University of Maine, Orono in 1986.
A restaurant operator, he was a member of the Bangor City Council from 1978 to 1981.
After serving as a member of Maine State Senate (1982-1994), Baldacci was elected as a Democrat to the One Hundred Fourth through One Hundred Seventh Congresses, serving from 1995 through 2002 with membership on the Committee on Agriculture and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
In 2002 John Elias Baldacci was elected Governor with 47% of the vote, the first Democrat to win that office in twenty years. Inaugurated on January 8, 2003, his inaugural address was printed in the Legislative Record of that day. He was reelected in 2006 and presented his second inaugural address on January 2, 2007.
His wife Karan has been a public school teacher and took a special interest in educational issues as an active First Lady.
On May 6, 2009, Baldacci signed a law making gay marriage legal in Maine. He had previously supported only civil unions for gay and lesbian couples. The laws was suspended and ultimately defeated in a “People”s Veto” referendum on November 3, 2009. Three years later, November 6, 2012, the law was passed in a popular referendum.
Faced with a huge looming budget deficit, his major challenge was to insure a balanced budget, which he did. His primary policy initiative was the Dirigo health plan – an attempt to control rising health care costs and to provide basic coverage to more Maine residents.
*Biographical Dictionary of the United States Congress, 1774-2005. Washington: Government Printing Office, 2005, p.600.
*Cited in Friends of the Blaine House at http://blainehouse.org/governors(accessed April 25, 2011) (accessed April 25, 2011)