Urban warrior Helen Losak has worked in the campaign trenches for many years including on behalf of City Councilwoman Maria Pereira with whom she has had a political falling-out. Pereira’s adventurous campaign work on behalf of State Rep. Jack Hennessy helped persuade a state judge to call for a new primary because four absentee ballot applications were signed by family members.
The campaign of City Councilman Marcus Brown, Hennessy’s primary opponent, is challenging that legal order with the Connecticut Supreme Court asserting “We strongly disagree with Judge Steven’s ruling that four legitimate Democratic electors that cast free and fair ballots without interference should be disenfranchised because a relative signed their absentee ballot application.”
Pereira was an aggressive pursuer of absentee ballot voting during the August 9 primary that kept the outcome razor thin. Brown defeated Hennessy with the walk-in vote handily. No doubt she will make absentee voting a priority for the primary redo Oct. 18.
In the commentary that follows, Losak claims Pereira utilizes her own chicanery to harvest absentee ballot applications.
I directly worked with Maria Pereira during her two campaigns for the City Council. She boasts herself as an Expert in getting hundreds of AB Applications. Concentration for Absentee Ballot Applications was mainly focused on seniors at the Fire Side Apartments and Augustana Homes located on Palisade Avenue in Bridgeport. While visiting seniors, a Primary Absentee Ballot Application was completed on them and dated for the appropriate Primary taking place in August during both elections years.
At the same time, a second Absentee Ballot Application was also completed on them but not dated for the November election coming up. The senior would sign this second Absentee Ballot Application but no date would be affixed to their signature. No date would be written in for the November election. This second Absentee Ballot Application would be held by Maria and dated (written in) as the November election date approached. Maria logged in all her Absentee Ballot Applications to track them before turning them into the Town Clerk Office. She was able to get hundreds of AB Applications completed at both senior complexes in one visit for both the August Primary and the November election. She held various meet and greet events with food and entertainment in order for the seniors to be familiar with her and her campaign workers to revisit them when their AB Ballots would be mailed by the Town Clerk Office.
On several occasions during both campaigns she asked me and candidate Michelle Small to “steal” Absentee Ballot Applications that the opposing campaign to her already filed with the Bridgeport Town Clerk Office. She told us the most recent date on the AB Application would be honored by the Town Clerk Office. Maria told us to tell the seniors that the Town Clerk Office sent us to redo their AB Application because there was a mistake with their birthday on the first AB Application. I refused to do this several times and likewise Michelle Small also refused to do this since the Town Clerk Office did not send us.
I want the public and especially seniors if they need an Absentee Ballot Application due to the six valid reasons for obtaining one, they should call the Bridgeport Town Clerk Office directly and request their AB Application. This would prevent any “Hanky Panky” of their Absentee Ballot Application from Maria Pereira.