What a difference a day makes. Monday night former State Senator Ernie Newton turned the political establishment upside-down following his unlikely endorsement in an effort to reclaim his old seat. Tuesday night there was political peace in the city for a bunch of other seats up for grabs. All were endorsed uncontested.
You could call this a family affair in the collective Ayala households. Christina Ayala, daughter of Democratic Registrar Santa Ayala and former City Councilman Tito Ayala, was endorsed for the 128th State House seat occupied by Andres Ayala who’s challenging Newton in a primary. Tito is Andres’ uncle. Santa herself was endorsed for another two-year term. It’s been a wild ride for the city registrar the past two years following the November 2010 ballot shortage that made national headlines. Christina Ayala is a supervisor for the Head Start Program at the city’s anti-poverty agency Advancement for Bridgeport Community Development.
The Democratic Town Committee endorsed the three members of the reconstituted Board of Education–Jacqui Kelleher, a professor at Sacred Heart University, Ken Moales, a minister and Hernan Illingworth, long active with the city’s PTA. They will be on the ballot for the September 4 special election, per order of the Connecticut Supreme Court following its reversal of state takeover of city schools. There does not appear to be any primary challengers, leaving the special general election the hot ticket. Four seats are up for grabs including one reserved for minority party representation. Will it go to a Republican or a candidate running on the Working Families Party line?
In addition to the endorsement of Christina Ayala, every incumbent member of the city’s State House delegation was endorsed: Auden Grogins, Jack Hennessy, Charlie Stallworth, Don Clemons and Ezequiel Santiago.