Arrivederci Testo’s – For Democrats A New Venue To Endorse Municipal Candidates

For Democratic Town Chair Mario Testa, a new venue for municipal endorsements.

When Democrats gather to endorse candidates for municipal office July 25 they will not do so at Testo’s Restaurant on Madison Avenue, for years the epicenter of city politics where Town Chairman Mario Testa habitually hosted scores of politicians and thousands of others for functions at his large catering hall destination.

It’s like booted from the confessional.

The restaurant was purchased last year by a developer who wants to erect nearly 200 units of market-rate housing opposed by many area neighbors citing density to the detriment of the North End. Municipal lawyers are crafting a legal opinion to determine if the project is a go or a no, per zoning regulations. Either way, it’s likely to end up in court.

Testa searched around the city landscape for a venue that can hold hundreds of gatherers, the town committee alone is 90 members. The former Holiday Inn Downtown had a large catering facility but that building is undergoing a conversion into housing that is expected to open soon.

Klein Memorial, Downtown Cabaret Theater, University of Bridgeport hall are all large enough, but then there’s the logistics of parking and seating, around respective tables, nine members per town committee district.

The chairman settled on Circolo Sportivo (aka the Italian Club) 2500 Park Avenue that checks the boxes for size, access and set up.

The mayoral endorsement is expected to go perfunctory, Joe Ganim poised for overwhelming support, a few outliers here and there. Will his three opponents Lamond Daniels, John Gomes and Marilyn Moore even attend for an obligatory waving of the flag?

The next morning, July 26, opposition teams are expected to hit the streets in a two-week search of more than 2,000 validated signatures of Democratic voters to qualify for a September 12 primary.

Dems on convention night will also endorse candidates for city clerk, town clerk, City Council,  school board and sheriff positions.

Opponents are piecing together slates of candidates for the signature run and primary campaigning.

Team Ganim, taking nothing for granted, is door knocking in earnest in anticipation of a primary. Will one, two or three rivals qualify for the ballot?




  1. More importantly than where the DTC will meet or what they will be up to, is the BREAKING NEWS…….


    Respectfully, and based on my oft repeated values: Open, Accountable, Transparent and Honest….. and assuming today is the correct day Time Will Tell

  2. Circolo Sportivo “The Italian American Club” are you kidding me. The only place these people feel comfortable evidently, is in the swaddling embrace of their Italian American culture. What about everybody else’s culture? I didn’t realize that the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee was an Italian boys club who just lets others in as a gesture of their patriarchal generosity.

  3. I don’t think we talk enough on this page about the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee and how important it is to the health and wellbeing of the overall political process in Bridgeport. The Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee is the Democratic, candidate pipeline to elected office in Bridgeport. Ninety elected members vote to nominate Democrats to run for various positions of elected office. If this organization doesn’t do its job well, we get less than the best qualified candidates to run as Democrats and thus get less qualified leaders, which invariably leads to less than acceptable outcomes for the city of Bridgeport. Leadership matters and leadership in Bridgeport needs to start with the mayor, the city council and the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee, in that order. When voting for mayor this year, let’s ask ourselves which candidate understands that the political process in Bridgeport is broken and needs a plan to fix it. Improving the political process in Bridgeport, to the extent that it can be improved, will lead to better outcomes for everyone involved. Voting is such an easy thing to do compared to the enormous harm a self-serving, elected leader can do to this city. The Democratic Town Committee serves a vital function in a healthy political process and that political process should “always” be focused on things that are in the best overall interest of the City of Bridgeport. All that being said, the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee is a good place for concerned citizens to begin getting involved in community organizing. Which is exactly what we could use a little more of around here. Organizing ourselves and voting together, under the right leadership, with the right organization, can change our lives and the communities we live in, for the better, in a material way, for many years to come. Organize and Vote !!!

  4. Jon,
    a proud at-bat for you! Home run.
    DTC- too little notice or public commentary. CHECK!
    DTC- candidate pipeline ignores ‘public servant’ candidates CHECK!
    DTC- Ready for concerned citizens to organize by district & challenge CHECK!
    DTC – necessary “right leadership” (NOT LOYAL TO ROYALTY) CHECK!
    Time will tell.


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