Will Hoar is one of two independents seeking the 2nd Congressional District seat held by Republican Bruce Poliquin. The 35-year-old special education teacher from Southwest Harbor plans a somewhat unconventional campaign.
Hoar says he is just starting to do some of the things he needs to do as a candidate — such as being interviewed by reporters. He says a couple of related issues drove him to run for Congress. Hoar says health care is a major issue for Mainers, as it is in his family. His wife has a chronic health condition.
When incumbent U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin voted against the Affordable Care Act, it galvanized Hoar’s thinking that Poliquin is out of touch.
“Beyond that, I believe that a representative should have open doors, open ears and be willing to hear and speak to constituents,” he says.
Hoar says the top issue in his mind is the opioid crisis — part of the broken health care system, and also one intensely personal to him.
“I am, myself, a recovering alcoholic and addict. So, I know firsthand the struggles,” he says.
Hoar says he will be honest with the voters, even if it hurts, and he must talk about his personal struggles. Don’t expect a lot of TV or radio ads, although he would like to raise enough money to put some on the air.
Hoar also says he plans to participate in as many debates and candidate forums as possible, and will rely on social media to get his issues out to the voters.
“With the help of social media, YouTube and Twitter. There are a number of ways of garnering attention and honing your message,” he says.
Hoar acknowledges the party candidates will have all the money they need to get their messages to the voters. He has hired a fundraiser and believes he can garner enough small contributions to get his message to voters through old-fashioned forums and the new forms of social media.
In addition to Poliquin, Hoar faces Democrat Jared Golden and independent Tiffany Bond this fall.
This story was originally published August 6, 2018 at 4: 58 pm ET.