Bridgeport’s Trifecta Satellite Campaign: Stafstrom, Testa, Caruso, Plus: Public Logistics For Barack’s Visit

In a short time the president of the United States will touch down in Connecticut’s largest city to urge, implore, inspire voters to support the Democratic ticket: governor, U.S. Senate, House of Representatives and so on.

Behind the scenes the Bridgeport Democratic organization has stitched together a funky configuration of supporters, some that get along, some that don’t, but all for a common cause … for now, at least. Sometimes they agree to get along for a few weeks before the fighting starts again, but that’s city politics.

What happens when they don’t get along, but are motivated to help elect Dan Malloy governor, Dick Blumenthal U.S. senator, and reelect Jim Himes to Congress? You create satellite operations. Translation: I’ll do my thing, you do yours, stay out of my way.

Think of the Bridgeport Democratic Party’s election-day turnout broken into thirds. On North Avenue, where LTL Freight used to be, former Dem party chief John Stafstrom, a veteran of numerous city elections, has been a supporter of Dan Malloy for years. Supported him in 2006 for governor and again this cycle. Stafstrom and former State Rep. Americo Santiago hold fort at the city’s mothership operation where most of the usual suspects in the party bang phones, pick up lawn signs and take marching orders for election day.

Over on Madison Avenue Democratic Town Chair Mario Testa operates his unique boiler-room operation out of his restaurant. Mario’s restaurant becomes a magnet for all the pols loyal to Mario including party Vice Chair Dottie Guman, the Mother Goose of the party, and several district leaders paying respect to the chairman. Phone calls go out to targeted city precincts such as the East Side and Mario’s home district, and food is prepared for election day workers. And oh yeah, if you want to drop off a check to the town chair for the DTC he won’t mind.

Now over on upper Main Street across from the Galaxy Diner, State Rep. Chris Caruso and his Big Wave followers operate the “coordinated” campaign. “Hey, Dan Malloy, Jim Himes (State Senator) Anthony Musto you help us with financing a get-out-the-vote effort and we’ll help you.” Caruso, ally State Rep. Jack Hennessy and a couple of dozen supporters are blitzing their respective legislative districts that include the Upper East Side and the North End with mailers, door knocking and phone calling. State Senator Ed Gomes and the spitfire Marilyn Moore, Gomes’ former legislative aide, are part of that coalition. And, who knows, maybe this coalition segues right into the mayoral cycle on the Big Wave’s behalf. Ya never know.

What’s the goal in all of this? If this odd satellite configuration can juice, along with Barack’s Saturday visit, a citywide turnout near 40 percent they feel good about their chances.

Barack’s Saturday Visit

From DNC:

Public Logistics Information for Bridgeport “Moving America Forward” Rally with President Obama

Bridgeport rally is one of four events happening around the country as part of final get-out-the-vote push this weekend

Bridgeport – With a “Moving America Forward” rally with President Obama set for this Saturday in Bridgeport, the following is logistical information for members of the public planning to attend the event at the Arena at Harbor Yard, 600 Main Street in Bridgeport, CT. Doors will open at 1:00 PM and the program will start at 2:00 PM.


Event attendees should use the main entrance for the arena located at 600 Main Street in Bridgeport.


Please visit for directions to the Arena at Harbor Yard.


Parking is available at numerous public and private parking lots in the neighborhood surrounding the Arena at Harbor Yard. Parking is available on a first-come first-served basis. Event attendees are encouraged to take public transportation and car pool.


Use of public transportation is strongly encouraged. The arena is located 2 blocks from the Bridgeport Metro North Train Station which is on the New Haven Line.


ADA entrance is at the arena’s “Premium Seat Entrance” located off Water Street between the Arena and the Baseball Stadium.


The event is free and open to the public. Tickets are not required, but an RSVP is encouraged. Space is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Members of the public wishing to RSVP should visit:


For security reasons, please avoid bringing bags to the rally if at all possible—participants should expect airport-like security. No signs, banners, or laptops are permitted.



  1. They are going to have to be on the ball to come close to 40%, it’s gonna be hard. Lennie you left out Black Rock’s Danny Roach!!! This man gets on the ball and can really help Democrats at Black Rock School and Longfellow School. Roach works hard and I will give him that he went out for Malloy in August and delivered at his precincts. When Black Rock comes in Tuesday night and if Democrats do decent there expect Dems to win big in the rest of the city. My gut feeling is telling me that no Republican for the top 3 seats on the ballot will hit 31% in the city. Vote Row B this Tuesday!!! Can’t wait to see Obama on Saturday!!!

  2. Unemployment is up. Growth is down. Deficits are at a record. What has gone wrong in Washington?

    Congressman Jim Himes voted for the stimulus bill, but he does not think that it went far enough. He admits that he would vote for pork barrel stimulus spending again if we give him the chance.

    Jim Himes voted for the healthcare takeover, but he wants to go further. His only regret is that he had to act incrementally while the voters are watching.

    November 2nd, 2010 will be a referendum on the Himes record. If you think that there is a better way, you can do something about it here: www

      Government spending began to slow, as the effects of the stimulus spending begin to wear off. That was reflected in the unemployment numbers for September. Companies added 64,000 jobs last month, but over all, the economy lost 95,000 nonfarm jobs, the result of a 159,000 decline in government jobs. Local governments were particularly hard hit.
      So private business is already creating jobs but it is government that is losing jobs. So if you cut government spending job losses will increase not decrease. And proportionally more jobs will be lost than created.

      The United States economy grew at an annual rate of 2 percent in the third quarter, the Commerce Department reported Friday, as it struggled to sustain its recovery from a deep recession.
      Growth is up not down. Irrefutable. To say growth is down is a blatant lie.

      “The problematic factor is that consumers remain fundamentally insolvent or worried about becoming so, and too many of the major banks are zombies uninterested in commercial or industrial lending,” said James K. Galbraith, an economics professor at the University of Texas.
      The problematic factor is not the deficit it is the consumer still negatively reacting to the Republican created economic crisis. The stimulus package averted a depression. Yes it is taking longer to recover than everyone would like but the European economies have begun to straighten themselves out, unemployment is not rising and the American consumer has stopped spending. All of this is necessary for a long-term fix.

  3. We all know what the career politicians can do, we are living it right now. These politicians who have served before have screwed us left and right. They come to us weeks and months before the election and promise us the moon and the stars and then produce squat. I am voting against all of the politicians who have served in office before. There is not one candidate who has served before who is a straight talker.
    I wish we were like Nevada and had a None of the Above box to check off. Imagine if none of the above won what would happen? The country would come back, employment would improve and the financial markets would get better.

  4. Lennie,
    Where is Paul Ganim’s satellite these daze or is he just along for the ride? No contest; no sweat …
    Where is Mitchie in all of this???
    Answer, in all of the satellites letting others do the work so that he can take all of the credit.
    If the East Side is being run out of Testo’s then State Rep Andres Ayala must be persona non grata at Mario’s. He is a long-time supporter of Malloy and is camped out on North Ave these days.

  5. And what is with Cernera resigning effective immediately to pursue teaching positions???
    There is a lot more there than the article is alluding to?
    One does not walk away from that job immediately, if it is immediately than he ain’t walking, he’s running away from that job.

  6. Himes will be in the East End after 5pm today to canvass, so maybe let him know about some important issues in Bridgeport before the big Obama day tomorrow. Point out …

    Why has the Congress Street Bridge not been rebuilt yet? Obama is building bridges in other countries but not in our own. Banks had the bailouts but there has not been enough in our city. The streets are full of bumps and broken up. Drive on Park Ave or on State Street from exit 25 on 95. Smooth in Fairfield, and broken in Bridgeport. Why?

    They dropped the Peer-to-Peer program Yale University said was doing good to help students with particular issues. Or was it not successful?

    Why should we vote for anyone Obama backs? Some say there is a long list of how he has let Democrats down. Will our local DEM leaders push hard for these things?

    The poverty rate has increased under Obama’s watch and as you can see from today’s paper, the rich private equity business people are booming and Obama still didn’t bring their tax rate up to the normal business rate, they get a discount reduced rate, subsidizing their acquisition games and many companies go bankrupt.

    The Fairfield Weekly used to be owned by the Chicago Tribune until a private equity took them over, loaded them with debt until they went bankrupt.

    Again, will the Democrats be strong enough to push for what’s right and what Bridgeport deserves? Do the DEMS deserve our votes? Some say vote GOP across the board even though they aren’t any better.

  7. *** With all that’s been going on in the last 10 years it’s obvious you can’t address every problem in America & abroad in 18 months. *** Better to concentrate on local issues first which affect you more in the long run, no? *** If McCain were president right now, America as is, would there be a tea party? *** Hallow’s eve is every day in politics so don’t believe the hype! *** SOS ***

  8. JustMe someone has been telling you lies you and that other person have no sense. As long as you fail to believe that what happened in the previous admin has no continued affects on our current state you have no or make any sense, you are in denial. I am going to say the true reason for blaming PRESIDENT OBAMA for all that is wrong, white America (Republicans, Tea Party) cannot get over the fact there is Black MAN living in the WHITE HOUSE. All these problems occurred prior to his election. Where were all you protesters then? We spend trillions on war with no returns for our investment but you complain about stimulus spent here in own country. Complain about rebuilding cities in countries we bombed into the ground. These are our taxes spend them here.

  9. Bpt Guy You are full of it plain & simple. I knew it would be a matter of time before the race card would be brought up. When all else fails fall back on the race card. You can certainly blame the previous administration for a lot of what is happening now but the Obama administration has not handled it well.
    The stimulus was supposed to slow unemployment and it was never supposed to go over 8.5, well it’s now over 10% and in the construction industry it’s closer to 20%. The housing industry was supposed to be fixed under this administrations plan but foreclosures are still rising. It’s time for a clean sweep get rid of all the incumbents and let’s see what the next 2 years bring. If things change Obama will probably be reelected if not he will be a one-termer. Time will tell and it won’t be racism.

  10. President Obama was a neophyte to world politics when he was elected on the slogan of change. Well, after 18 months of problems, not much has changed for the better!!!

    My solution … be independent for a CHANGE! Vote OUT every incumbent or career politician. Things cannot get much worse. So make a change, as our President campaigned on, and give him the change he asked for. Politics out, people in!!!

  11. TC I am white I hear this all the time from people I did not or could not believe were bigots. TC tell me racism does not live in American listen to the other blogs the Rush people these people are ignorant they are easily led, this is not the race card because you are not a racist or bigot does not change the fact that there are racists and bigots who don’t believe they are. Also independent 18 months is that how long you believe it should have taken to get out of this mess? THIS is the biggest economic downturn in the history of our nation since the depression and you want to give it 18 months? Yes what we need now is to let the Republicans and Tea Party people gain more control so that gridlock continues and nothing gets done because you guess nothing is better than something, anything. You have noticed Mitch McConnell feels the biggest issue to him and his party is to defeat President Obama so that means in the next two years they will do everything in their power to stop progress so as to make the President seem to be failing. Is that for the good of our country or for the good of their party? Is that what you want, change to actually effect no change? I guess you haven’t noticed the obstructions and threats of filibusters. These people who support the continued Bush era tax breaks 99% don’t make $250k yet they in essence support the tax break welfare state for the richest 1% You believe in trickle-down economy nothing trickles down but stuff you don t want to trickle on you like pigeon droppings and what flows down hill, shit. TC I am very well off but I have compassion for my fellow Americans my employees make very very good incomes because I have always felt I’m my brothers’ keeper.

  12. Sadly, I agree with Bpt Guy. I hear racist comments as well directed towards the president. Not so much from my peers but from the older generation (my parents and their friends), TC’s peer group. They can’t stand the fact that a Black man is in office. I, on the other hand, am proud that this happened during my lifetime. Now I take leave to wait in line at the arena.

  13. I have no problem with Obama being president chs and for you to make a blanket generalization about my generation is BS. You had better look at the voting demographics for seniors before you make such a racist statement.
    There are racists on both sides and it’s an easy term to throw around. Disagree with a Black elected official and you are racists that is pure BS disagree with a white elected official and it’s your first amendment right.
    Look no one expected President Obama to wave a magic wand and our problems would go away but show me one program from Tarp through the stimulus that has even made a dent in our problems. He talked about shovel-ready projects when he first took office and a few weeks ago said there is no such thing as shovel ready.
    Was it too much to expect a little improvement in the last 2 years?

  14. *** Obama is also half white too but all I ever hear is he’s Black; wonder why? *** Is the Obama admin. guilty of Americans living beyond their means, poor foreign policy & 2 wars? In 18 months is it possible to repair all the damage done? *** The truth shall set you free. ***


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