Hosting Interior Secretary at Acadia National Park


As Chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on National Parks – and as a frequent visitor to national park sites across the country – I’ve always taken a special pride in Maine’s one-of-a-kind gem, Acadia National Park. That is why it was a pleasure to welcome Secretary of the Department of Interior, Deb Haaland to the Schoodic Peninsula this month to get a first-hand look at our state's unparalleled natural treasures. I joined Governor Mills, Senator Susan Collins, and Representatives Chellie Pingree and Jared Golden for a tour of Acadia's maintenance projects, and for a sunrise ceremony with leaders of the Wabanaki tribes.


We visited a number of locations throughout Acadia National Park to see proposed, ongoing, and completed maintenance projects that will improve visitor experiences. Among the projects discussed during the events was the rehabilitation of Schoodic Point’s water and wastewater systems, which will receive $7.6 million in funding through the National Parks and Public Land Legacy Restoration Fund. The newly-created fund was established by the Great American Outdoors Act – which I was key sponsor of – and was signed into law last year.

Last week, I also held a hearing as Chairman of the Subcommittee on National Parks on a range of bills, including my legislation to finalize the York River designation as part of the National Park System's Wild and Scenic Program, and provide federal funds to the region. Jennifer Hunter, Coordinator of the York River Wild and Scenic Study, spoke during the hearing to highlight the extensive work done in the local community to build consensus around a potential designation. 

Advocating for Bath Iron Works, DDG 51 Flight III Destroyers


The DDG-51s are the workhorses of the Navy and play a vital role in our national defense, but President Biden's budget request for fiscal year 2022 only included one of the two previously projected vessels under the current multiyear procurement contract. Since this budget possibility was proposed, I've repeatedly challenged the Administration's thinking, and urged top Defense Department officials to reverse this move. 

Bath Iron Works is one of the two large surface combatant shipyards in the nation that can build DDG-51s, and I remain deeply concerned about the adverse impacts that this decision could have on the defense industrial base. Unexpected cuts will harm BIW’s ability to train and retain workers, making it harder for them to sustain their capabilities for moments of need. After all, you can’t turn these shipyards on and off like a light switch – if welders move out of town for another job, they’re gone. 


Hosting Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Admiral Mike Gilday at Bath Iron Works last month

Most recently, I advocated for the inclusion of the second DDG-51 in the Senate Armed Services Committee, and the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower.

The BRIDGE Act Can Connect us to the Future


The coronavirus pandemic has made clear what many in Maine already knew: broadband is essential infrastructure. Over the last year-plus, Americans of all backgrounds have relied on high-speed connections to work, learn, shop, and stay connected to their loved ones – but over that time, we also saw far too many of our citizens unable to access these opportunities. 

The American Rescue Plan included a historic down payment on broadband infrastructure to confront this challenge, but a larger investment is needed to ensure that no Americans are left behind in our increasingly digital society. This month, I joined Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) to introduce major bipartisan legislation to provide $40 billion in flexible funding to states, tribal governments, U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia to bridge the digital divide. The BRIDGE Act will fund resilient, future-proof broadband infrastructure that connects every corner of our country to the internet’s possibilities and enables all American communities to take part in the 21st century economy.

In a significant step forward for the BRIDGE Act, I worked to make sure that most of its key provisions and funding made it into the bipartisan infrastructure bill that my fellow Senate colleagues worked on for weeks and released last week, receiving the President’s endorsement. It’s a great step forward, but I won’t stop making this a priority in my conversations in Congress until we get it over the finish line!

Supporting the Confirmation of First-Ever National Cyber Director Chris Inglis


Cyberattacks are becoming a weapon of choice for nation-states and criminals alike in the 21st century – and as an open, widely-connected society, the United States has asymmetrical vulnerabilities that it must work to address. In recent weeks, America has been hit by a number of disruptive cyberattacks, and the only thing more chilling than the steady stream of attacks is the knowledge that in the wrong hands, the effects could be far more devastating. We are receiving wake-up call after wake-up call that America needs to bolster its cyberdefenses. As Co-Chair of the Cyberspace Solarium Commission, I’m advocating for action – now.  

This month, the Senate took a historic step toward confronting this challenge by confirming Chris Inglis as the country’s first-ever National Cyber Director; this was one of the most important recommendations the Solarium got put into law last year. Chris is an intelligent and talented leader, who possesses both the experience and the disposition to lead a government-wide effort to strengthen our cybersecurity. I was proud to introduce Chris at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC). I thank President Biden for selecting him – after working beside him for years in the Cyberspace Solarium Commission, I believe he is the best person for the job, and I look forward to our continued partnership on this urgent issue.

In the months ahead, I will continue working with my Congressional colleagues to ensure Chris has the resources he needs to succeed in this vital task – including providing adequate funding to build out the Office of the National Cyber Director and giving him a talented partner in this fight by confirming Jen Easterly to serve as Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.

Fighting to Ensure Safety of Afghans Who Aided U.S. Mission

We are leaving Afghanistan after 20 years, the longest war in this country's history. During the entirety of that 20 years, there were brave people in Afghanistan who helped us – aiding our mission in the struggle against terrorism as translators and guides. The United States plans to withdraw troops from Afghanistan on September 11, 2021, and as we leave, these Afghan partners are in grave danger.

If we leave without providing a path to safety for these Afghan friends, it will be a stain on this country that will exist for generations. Not only does our nation have a moral and ethical obligation to ensure their safety, we also have a national security obligation. If we don't take care of the people who took care of us, who is going to come to our aid the next time? Who is going to come to the aid of the Americans who turned their backs on those who risked their lives on behalf of this country? 

This month, I've been aggressively highlighting the need to protect Afghan partners to raise awareness and pressure for needed action. In a column for the Military Times, I cited that continued delays in the special immigrant visa (SIV) process “could very well be a death sentence for those who put their lives on the line to help the United States,” in addition to potentially discouraging future allies from working with American military efforts.

I've also been raising this important issue as a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, pressing a top Defense Department nominee for his commitment to prioritize efforts to bring America’s Afghan partners to safety. Last month, I joined a bipartisan group of my colleagues to urge President Joe Biden to streamline the SIV program for Afghan nationals who worked for or on behalf of the United States.

If you would like further information:

Legislative Update


As a reminder, you can read more on my regularly updated press release page at Here are some other priorities I’ve been working on:

  • Reforming charitable donations. I introduced the bipartisan Accelerating Charitable Efforts (ACE) Act to make sure that more charitable funds go towards the causes they are donated for.  My bill would establish a timeline for donations to working charities from donor-advised funds (DAFs), which currently have more than $140 billion set aside for future charitable gifts, but no requirement to distribute these funds. Read more HERE.
  • Empowering seniors to age comfortably in their own homes. I introduced the Wellness and Education for Longer Lives (WELL) for Seniors Act, which would expand the services provided during the Annual Wellness Visit, and the Medicare Preventive Home Visits Act, to create a new Medicare home visit benefit to identify in-home prevention interventions. Read more about both bills HERE.
  • Introduced bipartisan legislation to close the digital divide. The Digital Equity Act of 2021 would create new federal investments targeted toward a diverse array of projects at the state and local level that promote “digital equity”. Read more HERE.

Sights from a Working Roadtrip through Northern Maine


A serene moment at the Katahdin overlook

(via @anguskingmaine on Instagram)


Crossed the East Branch of the Penobscot

(via @anguskingmaine on Instagram)


Finally, l'm live from Millinocket on CNN to talk cybersecurity

(via @anguskingmaine on Instagram)

A Maine Legend Signs Off 

Long-time Maine Public Reporter Mal Leary announced that he’s retiring tomorrow after 45 great years in journalism, and that's why I decided to honor his work in a statement to the Congressional Record.  The speech was several paragraphs long, as he deserves, and I closed it by saying:


Mal working the story with me at UMA, August 2019

I’ve long believed that journalists are people we, the public, hire to tell us about priorities that we don’t have time to attend to ourselves; instead, we rely on friends to give us the scoop. That’s exactly who Mal was for thousands across Maine – a friend, who filled them in on the latest goings-on in Augusta, Washington, and everywhere in between. As our friend rides off into the beautiful sunsets of Maine, I want to express to him my best wishes, and Maine’s enormous gratitude for his work to make our state better.

In the News



A calm moonrise over Reid State Park

(Via @anguskingmaine on Instagram)

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