Crunch time for candidates trying to qualify for public financing. Sly Salcedo, candidate for state representative challenging Democratic-endorsed Eze Santiago and Chico Rivera in the 130th State Assembly District, filed his paperwork and expects formal authorization from state election officials, as others do, next week.
The paperwork involved to qualify for the taxpayer dough is a real stick in the eye, but the payoff is worth it, especially for candidates lacking ability to raise money through traditional methods.
Democrat Marilyn Moore, former legislative aide to State Sen. Ed Gomes, also has her paperwork in as the deadline looms. She’s challenging Trumbull Town Treasurer Anthony Musto. The winner faces Republican State Sen. Rob Russo.
State Rep. Rapid Robert Keeley, fighting Auden Grogins, the blonde banshee from Black Rock, received word that he’ll get the free dough as well, minus 500 bucks or so because his use of lawn signs from previous campaigns violates the rigid public finance laws. Grogins has already secured the free loot, so both will have a total of $30,000 to spend. We’re hoping they both set aside a few bucks to stage that mud-wrestling match at Ellsworth Field. Yeah, baby! Keeley supporter Tom Kelly and Grogins fan The Bridgeport Kid will serve as special guest referees. That should ensure a complete mud riot. Lookout, everyone, poise your hoses!
Hey, what’s the deal with Rick Porto placing a lien on Congressman Chris Shay’s home in Black Rock for non-payment of a paint job? Rick says his boys did lots of work and wants $6,000. Shays says they painted two rooms and should receive half that amount. Funny thing about it, the Republicans are neighbors. Maybe they can have a paint-bomb fight from across the street. We might need Bridgeport GOP Chair Marc Delmonico to settle this. It’s always good to have a guy dealing in concrete to resolve these kinds of disputes. Maybe former GOP Chair Ricky Torres, the genial proprietor of Harborview Market, can persuade Porto not to start Republicans For Jim Himes. Oops, paging Chris Caruso. I understand the mechanics lien Porto filed says “Red, White and Screw You!”
Speaking of Himes, Shays’ November opponent (yeah, yeah, I know Himes faces a primary from that spunky Greenwich witch Lee Whitnum, but he’s going to drive a stake through her heart) has announced he’s reached the $2 million fundraising mark. Shays also has raised more than $2 million, and $3 million isn’t far behind. (God I wish I had the media buy for those guys. Let’s see now, $2 million for television at a 15 percent commission…)
The state gubernatorial election is two years away but why wait for the last minute? Former State Senate Majority Leader George Jepsen has been making the political rounds testing support for state attorney general provided Richard Blumenthal does something else like maybe run for governor or take a job with Barack or a federal judgeship, or maybe Chris Dodd doesn’t run again, or this or that. (Don’t hold your breath.) But all of this sets up intrigue. Nimble-minded George would make a terrific AG. Let’s suppose Dick does something else, but not governor, Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz, campaigner extraordinaire, runs for governor. That leaves her seat open. Hey, Mayor Bill Finch would be the perfect replacement. Bill always wanted to be Connecticut secretary of state. It provides an ideal platform for all the feel-good things he loves to talk about: voter rights, child adoption issues, educating school kids on the election process.
It also gets Birdie out of Bridgeport a year earlier! Hey, Woody, file the papers! Bird Man for CT secretary of state. I’ll lead the fan club.