McKinney Disses Walker, Endorses Herbst For Governor

McKinney, Walker
Four years ago John McKinney, left, and David Walker formed a campaign team. Not this year. CT mirror photo.

In 2014, former State Senator John McKinney and Bridgeport resident David Walker formed a campaign team when the candidates ran for governor and lieutenant governor respectively. Most political observers believe McKinney would have defeated incumbent Democrat Dan Malloy had he been victorious over Tom Foley in the GOP primary. This cycle McKinney bowed out of a run while Walker, the former U.S. comptroller general, is running for the state’s top spot. McKinney on Monday, however, endorsed former Trumbull First Selectman Tim Herbst for governor. The GOP convention is May 12. An August primary is expected.

Herbst snags McKinney endorsement.

McKinney endorsement letter:

As a kid growing up in Fairfield, I would often spend time during campaign season stuffing envelopes, passing out palm cards at the train station or putting up lawn signs for Fairfield Republicans, people like my father Stew McKinney, Carl Dickman, Jacky Durrell, Dan Caruso and so many more. In 1998, I was honored to receive the endorsement of the Fairfield RTC as your candidate for the State Senate and for 16 years I had the privilege of representing you in Hartford. Although I was unsuccessful in my bid for Governor in 2014, the Fairfield Republicans came through for me, delivering more votes in the primary than any other town in the state. I am forever thankful and grateful for your incredible support.

While not a candidate in this current election cycle, I remain passionate about the difficult issues facing our state and to that end, am fully committed to electing a Republican governor and Republican majorities in the legislature. Recently I was asked by two prominent members of the Walker team to remain neutral during the gubernatorial primary, to not get involved or share my thoughts on the race. I simply cannot do that. This is too important.

We all know that our state is in trouble. If we are going to save Connecticut, reverse the damage done by Dan Malloy and the Democrats in Hartford and restore prosperity, then we must nominate a Republican candidate for Governor who can win in November and who will fight fearlessly for hardworking taxpayers once in office.

I believe that candidate is Tim Herbst.

Tim is a battle-tested leader with a track record of winning tough fights. At age 29, he defeated a popular Democrat incumbent to become the First Selectman of Trumbull, he then went on to become the first Republican re-elected in Trumbull in over 40 years. Not only did Tim win four straight elections, he carried a supermajority of Republicans on the town council every time he was on the ballot.

In 2014, as our Republican nominee for State Treasurer, Tim outperformed the entire GOP ticket; a feat even more impressive considering that his opponent was a 15 year incumbent and the Democrats top vote getter in the previous election.

In short, Tim is a proven winner and vote getter.

Under Tim’s leadership, Trumbull made a remarkable turnaround:

• Tim reversed an unfunded pension crisis by reforming town benefits and saving taxpayers millions of dollars. Tim led by example, refusing to take a pension, reducing the number of pension-eligible political appointees and entering all new hires into a defined contribution plan.

• Tim balanced eight straight budgets, and cut taxes twice. Tim’s strong fiscal management resulted in an upgrade in the town’s bond rating, creating further savings for taxpayers.

• Tim developed a pro-business climate that spurred economic growth for each of the eight years he was in office allowing him to make important investments in the public school system and town infrastructure.

• Under Tim’s stewardship, Trumbull gained national recognition as Family Circle magazine ranked Trumbull as the 7th best place in the country to raise a family and ranked Trumbull’s school system in the top 10 nationally.

The reality is that in my lifetime, Connecticut has not elected a candidate for Governor who has not previously held elected office. We have seen our party nominate candidates in recent elections who had never won an election and who had no prior political experience, only to see them lose time and time again. We cannot afford to make that mistake again in 2018.

Tim Herbst has what it takes to govern, and it is my sincere belief that he is our best hope for victory in 2018.

Please join me in supporting Tim Herbst for Governor.



  1. In 2014, John McKinney chose a running mate who had plenty of political experience but never held elected office. It didn’t bother him then, why now? His endorsement is overrated.
    Democrats for David Walker continue to gain momentum.

  2. McKinney’s reasoning is too retro. President Trump never held elective office, either.
    Besides, Walker didn’t have to win elected office. He received two Presidential appointments and was awarded several private sector jobs.

  3. McKinney has been endorsed by The Sour Grapes Party.
    Some people think it’s a political curse to be endorsed by the biggest loser in the race you seek to enter.
    They got that idea from me.

  4. Walker is the fixer, the machinists just what this State needs, someone like Dave to roll up his sleeves and straighten this mess out! Enough of these photo op clowns!

  5. Mckinney spreading LIES about Tim Herbst.
    ” Tim balanced eight straight budgets”
    Tim left Trumbull with a budget that was not balanced. It had $2.4 million in holes. He added in $1MIllion for a tipping fee at the dump that was never approved by the Town Council. He counted on $1.4 Million in non-existen state aid.
    Tim sent out tax bills that had the 3rd and 4th quarter payments marked ‘TBD’ to be determined…hoping to force his successor to raise taxes.
    Herbst raided the general fund year after year to balance his budget.

    Anyone BUT Herbst!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Wow, that’s messed up, Dave Walker saved McKinney run for governor the last time because Walker had raised the funds​ needed for McKinney’s run because he didn’t have enough money. I guess being loyal doesn’t work with McKinney.

    1. Couldn’t have said it better Ron. I’ve received more than a few state wide calls and emails, the best message thus far is they hoped McKinney at least sharpened the knife before he plunged it into Dave’s back.
      This is the part of party politics that absolutely makes my hair hurt.

  7. Tim Herbst will never win in the general election. He may be a favorite of a few old time party boys but, he has nothing to offer the public. Lets face it, he is running for Governor because he had no chance in hell at winning in Trumbull again, although he tells it the other way around. As a lifetime politician where do you go from there. McKinney should have listened to the “prominent Walker supporters” this just made him look like a sore LOSER!

  8. Was Dave Walker ever a viable candidate for governor? If he was I must have missed his ascension to the governorship of Connecticut candidates. Ron Mackey told OIB years ago that Dave Walker would never be a viable candidate for office in Connecticut and now you think, feel or believe that his candidacy took a hit by McKinley not endorsing him? Was this a diss, NAH. Would Dave be a viable candidate with this endorsement, NAH.

    1. Don, you notice how Jeff Kohut keeps avoiding my question to him about who he’s supporting for governor. He writes these long book reports telling telling everybody why Ned Lamont won’t win. I’ve been asking him for Jeff for days the same for three days on different topics and he can’t answer my question. All he wants do is to write about the gold coast of Connecticut.

    2. Donald, with all due respect i dont think anyone believes this article hurt Daves campaign at all. This type of written attack is typical of little Timmy when he feels threatened. Kets face it, all the years of Timmys “hard work” resulted in a now blue Trumbull. Nothing else needs to be said about his time running Mayberry. He is no whete near qualified to handle the problems of the state and it doesnt matter which party he belongs too. He is still at an elementary level in Government. It is however surprising that McKinney who didnt even have the courage to run would write an article like this about a man that jumped in the ring to help him out last go around. This is an article written by two men who have felt a sense of entittlement their whole lives yet, never really figureed out how to make a success of what was given to them. I am willing to bet that between the two if them, it took the help of 3 others to just kick this article out. Sad and shameful.

  9. Stewart McKinney’s now-tormented spirit (ghost) will have to get involved in this race in order to counter his politically-wayward son’s bizarre endorsement of Trumbull’s mini-Donald Trump gubernatorial candidate…

    The Connecticut Republican Party’s only hope for a respectable turnout in November is to put David Walker in the lead spot on their ticket…

    David Walker is the only credible, viable Republican candidate in this race…

    Now it seems a good thing that John McKinney is out of elected office… I used to think that he could have made a decent governor… Guess he won’t be David Walker’s running mate…

    This state’s politics gets more bizarre by the day (in step with the country, it would seem…)

    1. Ron Mackey // Apr 28, 2018 at 12:48 pm

      Jeff Kohut, after telling us about your fairy tale about the governors race now maybe you can tell us who you think will win?

  10. Ron: I think that at this point in a very lack-luster, Connecticut political season, of notable lack of gubernatorial-hopeful campaign-platform power, originality and substance, the best answer that I can give to your question “Jeff Kohut, after telling us about your fairy tale about the governors race now maybe you can tell us who you think will win?” my answer would have to be: New York and Massachusetts…

  11. High office, be it mayor, first selectman, county executive, governor or president, is a position of power not to be taken lightly or used to settle old scores. We’ve seen how vindictive and spiteful individuals have done just that. Take a look at Donald Trump. He’s threatening to shut down the federal government if Congress doesn’t allot money for his precious border wall. Joe Ganim and his Madison Avenue goomba have been using City Hall for personal enrichment, for years. Let’s not forget Ganim went to prison for such behavior. Tim Herbst used the power of office to spy on political opponents.

  12. Mary Filo, I never insinuated nor intimated that this article, Tim nor McKinney hurt Dave’s campaign in any way. I questioned whether Dave Walker’s campaign was a viable campaign from the beginning. As a Lifetime Democrat who has vote in every city, State and Federal election since I turned 18 in 1969, I vote Republican in the last two gubernatorial elections because I couldn’t and wouldn’t vote for Malloy. Dave Walker or the other Republicans running will break my streak at two.


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