Tuesday is the deadline for all petitioning candidates for state office to submit signatures to the respective local registrar offices. The magic number for Democratic petitioners for governor is 15,458. For Republicans 9,081. Those numbers represent two percent of major party affiliation in Connecticut. Signature gathering is a long, hard, expensive slog. Meanwhile, Mayor Joe Ganim jiggling a narrative that Democratic-endorsed Ned Lamont is out of touch with regular folks because of the number of toilets in his Greenwich mansion has some legs. And Ned, refreshingly an inexperienced spinner, looks like a deer in the headlights when asked by News 8’s Mark Davis if he ever cleaned one of those toilets. See video above. Ned’s running partner Susan Bysiewicz rescued Ned on this one.
As someone who’s cleaned his share of toilets (yes, I sanitized them when I was in the joint, and still do a free man) it’s striking that Ned had to be plunged out by SuBy on the question from Davis.
Ganim and Guy Smith are trying to qualify for an August gubernatorial primary against Lamont. Republicans David Stemerman, Bob Stefanowski and Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti are attempting to forge a primary against party endorsed Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton, as well as former Trumbull First Selectman Tim Herbst and retired Navy veteran Steve Obsitnik, both of whom qualified at the GOP convention via delegate support.
Primary petitions are verified by local election officials and then shipped to the Connecticut Secretary of the State’s office for tabulation, a process that is already under review. The Ganim campaign has been submitting its signatures to registrars in an on-going basis to both gauge the cushion it needs to account for invalidated signatures as well as accelerate the approval process. While it needs 15,458 for ballot access, the Ganim campaign has amassed more than 25,000 signatures, most of them from Connecticut cities. Registrars must complete review of petitions by June 19.
As of 4 p.m. Friday, the number of primary petition signatures tabulated by the Connecticut Secretary of the State’s office is as follows:
Ganim – 4,761
Stemerman – 20
Stefanowski – 191
Lauretti – 11
Why is Ganim’s number dwarfing others and nothing from Smith? A combination of factors.
Ganim is submitting signatures as he goes while the Smith campaign is waiting until near deadline. In addition the state cannot tabulate until it receives the verified number from local registrars. The state is releasing tabulation numbers on a week day basis so those numbers above will grow. Stemerman announced Monday morning he plans to submit 20,000 signatures before the deadline.
Since Connecticut’s direct primary process for statewide office was instituted 15 years ago, no candidate has successfully petitioned for governor.