Dem District Primaries On Tap For Tuesday–Could This Be Last Term For Testa As Party Leader?

Control of three Democratic Town Committee districts is on the line Tuesday featuring the continuing political saga between City Council President Aidee Nieves and City Clerk Lydia Martinez on the East Side, a battle between two high profile city ministers, State Rep. Charlie Stallworth and City Councilwoman Mary McBride-Lee, in the Whiskey Hill area and contested slates in the South End, Downtown and West End.

Each contest has 18 candidates with the top nine vote producers from the combined slates elected to the 90-member town committee. Long-time leader Mario Testa is expected to receive another two-year term at the next organizational meeting to select party officers.

DTC members comprise the infrastructure that endorses candidates for public office and grinds out work on behalf of the party. The party under Testa, since his return to leadership in 2008, has experienced no fissures to seriously challenge his chairmanship.

Could this be the last term for Testa? Now in his mid 70s, he is talking about scaling back his involvement in politics. Assuming he receives another two years, he’d be involved in one more reelection contest for Mayor Joe Ganim in 2023. Unclear who’ll challenge Ganim.

State Senator Marilyn Moore, who lost a tight primary to Ganim in 2019, is the largest threat to take him out. Moore has her own reelection for state office this cycle, but it appears party leaders are pragmatically averse to putting up a primary challenger against her in the city-suburban district where she’d be an overwhelming favorite.

State Senator Dennis Bradley’s mayoral ambitions are currently on hold because of his pending trial on federal election violations. The trial, delayed multiple times, is now slated for late May at a time delegates to a party convention will endorse a candidate for Connecticut’s 23rd Senate District. No one has stepped up to formally challenge Bradley so it’s possible Bradley could become the default endorsed candidate as potential opposition takes a wait-and-see attitude on his trial outcome.

District 131

District 135

District 137



  1. I’m not sure who Martin Rodriguez is, could He be the ONLY Puerto Rican running in the 131st district out of 18 candidates? This district incorporates State St, the West side etc and only , maybe 1 Puerto Rican…? Border line insulting to the History of the District.

  2. Hector, I was a member of the DTC in 1990 in the 131st district but after the re-districting lawsuit filed and won by the NAACP Legal Defense Fund which is totally different that the NAACP. The district were first changed to put certain people in different districts to put them out of power, Chris Caruso, Ed Gomes and Ralph Ford were a few of the individuals moved. I reside in Seaside Village, which was predominantly white, the city new lines moved Seaside Village from the 131st district into the 130th district, this move did nothing to balance the lines by race. As for the DTC members it moved me and one other person from being a member in the 131st which left them with just 7 DTC members to be a DTC member in the 130th district which now had 11 DTC members.

    The final decision moved Seaside Village back to the 131st and the creation of two predominantly black districts, two predominantly Hispanic districts, two mix districts. The 131st district became a Hispanic district

    Hector, there’s something wrong with Hispanics not seeking seats on the DTC.

    1. Ron I agree, there isn’t a district in the city that shouldn’t have at least 2 Black and 2 Puerto Rican’s on it, Especially those districts that are represented by them on either the Council or the General Assembly.

    1. Hector, I don’t understand why no black or Hispanic ever challenge Maro Testa. Black and Hispanic are more than the majority of the voters and yet they can’t come together and support a candidate of our own or have more political power because Mario isn’t giving up anything, the only way you get power is to take it.

  3. The similarities are incredible !

    Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin is a Russian politician and former intelligence officer who is the president of Russia, a position he has filled since 2012, and previously from 1999 until 2008. He was also the prime minister from 1999 to 2000, and again from 2008 to 2012.Wikipedia
    Born:Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, October 7, 1952, Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
    Political party:Independent (1991–1995, 2001–2008, 2012–present)

    Mario Testa
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    Chairman of the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee
    Mario Testa
    Born Italy
    🏳️ Nationality Italian
    💼 Occupation
    Owner of Testo’s Restaurant
    🏢 Organization Democratic Party of Connecticut
    Predecessor John F. Stafstrom Jr.[1]
    🏛️ Political party Democratic Party
    Mario Testa is the Chairman of the Democratic Town Committee in Bridgeport, Connecticut. He is also the cousin of Thomas Bucci, a former Bridgeport politician. Testa is also the owner of Testo’s, a restaurant in Bridgeport, CT which serves as his business, office, and political headquarters.

    Early life and family
    Mario Testa emigrated to the United States from an area 40-miles above Naples, Italy as a teenager. He was the seventh child born to a family of eight.

    Political career
    Chairman of Democratic Town Committee
    In the 1990s, Testa maintained control of the Democratic party for over a decade. Testa resigned from his position in 2003, but did not disclose the details of his resignation.[6] In 2008, he regained his position from a divided party that voted 5 times. Testa has served as the Chairman of the Democratic Town Committee for 15 of the last 20 years.

    Delegate to Democratic Convention
    The 2012 Democratic National Committee Secretary named Mario Testa as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention along with Ms. Loretta Williams, Ms. Kerry Wood, Mayor Bill Finch, Hon. Thomas C McCarthy, and Ms. Dorothy Guman.
    Mario Testa was the Chairman of John C. Mandanici’s Special Committee between 1981 and 1982.

    Testa is a long-time supporter of former Bridgeport Mayor Joseph Ganim. Upon Ganim’s release from prison, Testa said, “I’m glad he’s back home.” As the chairman, Mario Testa submitted a formal complaint on behalf of Mayor Bill Finch regarding a billboard.

    Absentee ballots
    On several occasions, Mario Testa was accused of playing a role in attempting to rig elections by use of absentee ballots.

    Tax evasion
    In 1994, Mario Testa was questioned about the property taxes he paid on 3 vehicles. The vehicles were registered to him, but Testa used the address of his summer home in Monroe, CT. As a result, his property taxes were reduced by over two thirds. The vehicles were an ’89 BMW, ’85 Cadillac, and an ’84 GMC Station Wagon. Testa replied, “the vehicles are classics and must be stored.

    FBI wiretap
    In an interview, Mario Testa claimed that he had knowledge that he was wiretapped by the FBI in 2001. In response, Michael Sklaire, the former assistant U.S. attorney who prosecuted the Bridgeport corruption case said, “He was very close to some very corrupt people for a very long time” was the reason no charges were ever filed.
    In 2010, Mario Testa prevented Dan Malloy from speaking to the Democratic Town Committee. Malloy believed that it was retribution for refusing to support a casino in Bridgeport in 1995.

  4. Jim Fox, electrifying as you present it and have done the research. Did any source offer content or comment on what Herr Testa believes other than what he has allowed to coalesce, gather, or fester in the City of Bridgeport? He is moved by political activity and as many pols do keeps himself aloof from those whose personal loyalty may be in doubt.
    Actually, shocking, Jim when you think about the fame and fortune he might have shared with folks who grew up in this City? I have been reading about Fiona Hill and Lt. Col Vintman (Ret.) in the latest books they released showing how two more recent immigrants to this country used their opportunity in a democratic way. Energy source. Power. Alternating or Direct Current?. Sparks or sputters? Faulty breaker panel. Time will tell.

  5. Mario will stay in power as long as black folks and puerto ricans keep fighting for crumbs at the table. We bash our leaders and tear them apart before they can ever get started. and you wonder why they stay in power. I hope you can wake up and smell the coffee because it is brewing in your face!


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