Down East 2013 ©
C-Span now has their complete archives online, in an easily watchable format. Along with hours of boring House and Senate proceedings, there’s also an interesting slice of political life in Maine for the past two decades, everything from John McKernan’s inauguration  as governor in 1991 to a health care panel discussion with Maine health policy director Trish Riley  held last week.
The site allows us to look back at some of Maine’s most important political figures, including footage of Senator Ed Muskie’s funeral in 1996 , tributes to Senators George Mitchell in 1994  and Margaret Chase Smith in 1995 , as well as a lecture given by Senator William Cohen  about his own political life (including accidentally campaigning at an X-rated drive-in movie).
Also available are videos of important political events that happened in Maine. You can watch George H.W. Bush give his first statement on the Soviet coup in 1991  from his porch in Kennebunkport. There’s Hillary Clinton selling President Clinton’s health reform package at a forum in Portland  in 1994, along with Senators Mitchell and Cohen and Congressman Andrews (back then they were aiming to cover 95 percent of Americans by 2000). There’s also an education speech by Bush in Lewiston  from ’91, a joint press conference with British Prime Minister John Major , also in Kennebunkport, and Mitchell’s announcement of his retirement from the Senate . “We are the most fortunate people to have ever lived, to be Americans, the most free the most open society in all of history,” said the then-Majority Leader.
There are also some interesting campaign moments caught on tape. My favorites so far are Vice Presidential candidate Al Gore speaking at a rally in Biddeford in 1992 , and presidential candidate Howard Dean speaking in Bangor in 2004  shortly after his losses in Iowa and New Hampshire. “Maine's a great place to start the turnaround,” said the overly-optimistic Governor.
The best resource on the site for Maine political enthusiasts, however, has to be the archive of political debates. From 1994, there’s the gubernatorial contest (moderated by future Scarcelli campaign manager Patsy Wiggins) and the Senate race  to replace Mitchell . From 1996, there’s a series  of  debates  from the Collins vs. Brennan race to replace Senator Cohen. From 1998 they have the gubernatorial  debates  leading up to Angus King’s successful re-election. From 2000, you can watch a debate from the all-but-forgotten Snowe vs. Lawrence Senate contest . From ’02, there’s Collins vs. Pingree , from ’04 the 2nd CD debate  and from 2006, a debate from our last gubernatorial contest .
There’s also plenty of political errata. You can have Angus King take you on a video tour of the Blaine House , watch Stephen King give his 2005 UMaine commencement speech , or watch years of States of the State speeches delivered by Maine governors.
So, cancel your Netflix subscription, make some popcorn and prepare to geek out thanks to broadband internet and the generosity of America’s cable companies.