Three weeks left to Democratic Town Committee primaries. It can mean only one thing. Absentee ballots become available on Tuesday. The Town Clerk’s Office is processing stacks and stacks of applications for Democratic electors in six districts, giving new meaning to a winter blizzard. The actual absentee ballots become available three weeks out after candidates are certified for the ballot.
When it comes to absentee ballots, there’s a score-keeping element in these DTC races. Political operatives sign out applications from the Town Clerk’s Office and then the race is on to keep tabs on what is returned after elections officials mail them to voters. Gamesmanship along the way is also a rite of passage such as trying to poach opponents’ intended absentee voters. Seasoned political operatives know most of their serial absentee voters, especially those in senior centers and housing projects, but a well-placed phone call or visit by a candidate to make a persuadable pitch to a would-be voter could add an extra handful of votes.
“Mr. Haystacks said I should vote for his line.”
“Oh, you can vote for Mr. Haystacks, but you can also vote for me right below his line.”
Each of the districts with primaries have two opposing slates of nine candidates, totaling 18, but electors can fill in the ovals of any nine candidates.
“I don’t like that person running on your slate!”
“It’s okay, you can still vote for me.”
And so it sometimes goes in these ultra retail races where some electors split their vote just for the pure sinister pleasure or throwing together pols who cannot stand one another. Nothing like a mischievous voter causing disharmony in the ranks. It’s the perfect way to get even with politicians, a reverse form of “Let the people suffer.”
What’s at stake in these races? Essentially, the future leadership direction of the party. Bridgeport’s 90-member DTC endorse candidates for public office and choose party officers. The results of the March 6th vote determines if party leader Mario Testa receives another two-year term. Mario and Mayor Joe Ganim desire another two years for the chairman because 1. Mario influences the delegate selection process for gubernatorial candidate Ganim seeking a primary ballot spot and 2. Ganim wants Mario in charge of the party for Joe’s 2019 reelection for mayor if his long-shot for governor fails and 3. Mario not in charge could impact Ganim’s fundraising strength. There are other reasons but those are three keys.
District candidates follow listed by Slate B and C. No Slate A because no party endorsements in this process. Democratic electors in the respective districts are eligible to vote.
130th District, Black Rock/West End:
Slate B: Eric M. Amado Jr., Scott Burns, Joy A. Cline, Anne H. Larcheveque, JoAnn Manzo, Michael S. Meehan, Thomas A. Mulligan Jr., Daniel S. Roach, Shaquana Shaw.
Slate C: Shaurice Bacon, Gregory Blake, Lynda Bluestein, Donna M. Curran, Dione T. Dwyer, JoAnn R. Kennedy, Michael R. Raleigh, Jenny Valencia, Diane M. Vulcano.
131st District, South End/Downtown/West End:
Slate B: Jack O. Banta, Paul R. Boucher, Tommika Leak, Genoveva Miranda-Torres, Jose A. Negron Sr., Glenn Pettway, Mitchell Robles, Eric M. Simmons, Denese Taylor-Moye.
Slate C: Mdsufian Ahmed, Mary L. Bruce, Jorge Cruz Sr., Shavonne Davis, Frances Demery, Travis M. Harden, Scott Hughes, Omari O. McPherson, Melody Thergood.
132nd District, West Side:
Slate B: Carolyn D. Askew, M. Evette Brantley, Julian T. Brown, Michael D. Freddino Jr., Anthony J. Lancia Sr., John W. Olson, Elaine Pivirotto, Rolanda Smith, Reginald F. Walker.
Slate C: Lillian M. Alves, Marcus A. Brown, Rosie A. Clarke-Jones, Robert F. Distasi, Braxton T. Gardner, Antoinette Giles, Robert Halstead, Eva J. McLeod, Lisa Parziale.
133rd District, North End:
Slate B: Albertina Baptista, Michael A. DeFilippo, Patrick Gorrell, Jeanette Herron, Hernan F. Illingworth, Sabrine Kuczo, Thomas C. McCarthy, Samantha R. Nelson, Wayne Rodriguez.
Slate C: Jessica R. Allen, Sandra J. Carolina, Vincent DiPalma, Joseph Goldberg, Gail Janensch, Robert T. Keeley, Claire Mastromonaco, Anne Pappa-Phillips, Leighton O. Reynolds.
135th District: Whiskey Hill/North End:
Slate B: Robert A. Anderson Sr., Harry A. Bell, Darrett Evans Moss, Linda G. Jones, Wilfred E. Murphy, Doris R. Nelson, Stephen M. Nelson, Carmen D. Roman-Hatton, Arnold L. Whitaker Sr.
Slate C: Lisa Anderson, Audrey M. Barr, Keisha Burks, Tomeekha Gee, Warren Godbolt, Mary McBride-Lee, Waith K. Mitchell, Charlie L. Stallworth, Ruth M. Vines.
138th District, Upper East Side:
Slate B: Jacqueline Abrams, Timothy L. Bassey, Daniel C. Faber, Charles E. Hare, Sarah Lewis (not this Sarah Lewis), Helen Olga Losak, Maria H. Pereira, Michele L. Small, Samia G. Suliman.
Slate C: Tony Barr, Tyreke Bird, Abraham Duque, Dolores Fonseca, Rafael Fonseca Jr., Kevin Monks, Anthony Robert Paoletto, Martha Santiago, Nessah Smith.