THIS STORY WILL BE UPDATED
With more than 50 percent of Maine's November 5 votes counted, that state's bear-baiting/hounding/trapping referendum has failed, projects that state's Bangor Daily News late Tuesday night.
The results were gleaned from the newspaper and came from near real-time results. The latest count show that the referendum's "no" votes stands at 53 percent while the percentage of Maine's voters backing the initiative is 47 percent.
It is widely held that the Humane Society of the United States largely bankrolled the voter-initiative, proposal by contributing an oft-quoted figure of $2.5 million, or 97 percent of the movement's entire contribution figure.
This is the second time within 10 years that Maine voters have faced a measure to severely limit the methods the state's resident and non-resident hunters can use to take black bears.
Maine's gubernatorial candidates all came out in opposition to Question 1, believing that bear management rightly belongs in the hands of wildlife professionals.
- Jeffrey L. Frischkorn