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Take A Bow, Young Dems

September 14th, 2017 · 19 Comments · City Council, City Politics, News and Events

Young Dems celebrate

Young Dems celebrate victory.

Nice to sniff fresh-brewed enthusiasm from young pols. The Greater Bridgeport Young Dems added flourish to the primary season. Its President Constance Vickers shares insight on the Young Dems Facebook page.

I woke up this morning still exhausted from yesterday, in desperate need of an overdose of caffeine to make up for only a pittance of sleep over the last week- but then it hit me again- all of our endorsed candidates won last night!!

I am so incredibly proud of the candidates, their campaigns, and all of you who rolled up your sleeves and hit the pavement to help elect your fellow young democrats. We are the future of the party and I am so proud that Maria Zambrano ViggianoMarcus Brown Harrigan, and Kyle Langan have claimed our first wins.

It helps to have great candidates- but we cannot forget the masterminds behind the scenes who manage and organize these campaigns. I am proud that three GBYD members spearheaded successful campaigns including Lauren Gray for Marcus Brown and Kyle Langan for City Council, 132nd DistrictAntonio Felipe for Castillo and Viggiano For The 136 and Gage Elliott Frank for Smith and Spain for City Council 130th. GBYD members were also strategists and treasurers including Fabio MazoKarla YanezJosh Dellaquila and Emily Brown. Then there’s Jessica Muniz-Martinez who isn’t on the ballot for Board of Education until November but helped candidates in every district, especially our Young Dems. Thank you as well to State Reps. Christopher Rosario and Steve Stafstrom for their mentoring and constant support of GBYD.

I am also proud of GBYD Vice President Rowan Kane for a tough fight in his first campaign as a candidate. Rowan and I will continue to work towards the goals and objectives we set in April to fortify the structure and sustainability of this organization.

This is only the beginning for us and I hope this has inspired others to step up and run for office over the next few cycles. As we turn to the general in November I want us to refocus on recruiting new members from all communities to ensure that we are providing an inclusive environment for young leaders to grow.

The unofficial primary results can be found on Only in Bridgeport.

It’s a good day to be a Young Dem!

Cheers,

CV

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19 Comments so far ↓

  • Lisa Parziale

    Constance that’s a feel-good commentary, but feel-good anything lasts only as long as it’s nurtured and continues to grow. As one of a group of new, interested, motivated individuals, you all have a responsibility to integrate, with discretion, with those who did the heavy lifting before you. I started my political involvement as a YD, and never blinked. I took the initiative to support two new candidates in my district, with a combination of the experienced and the energy and ability of the new, we were successful. A word of advice, while all of you worked very hard to break the choke-hold on local politics, and in particular the present TC, you’re work has just begun. This impressive new group could not have achieved what happened yesterday without the help of the “old school good ones.” So enjoy the moment, you all deserve it, but stay humble, smart, and most importantly, make friends.

  • Frank Gyure

    I was a Young Democrat once. I have my letter to Abraham Ribicoff to show to anyone. The President that I had to fight was Ronald Reagan. Congratulations to the energy and devotion that all of you brought to this primary season. As Lisa Parziale just said,”We’ve only just begun.” That’s an old “Carpenters” song.Before you’re time but google it or stream it. Some of you may stay in Bridgeport and you may be seeing years of work ahead of you to promote good governance and a “renaissance” of Bridgeport. Not to discourage anyone but the hardest work is still to come.There is an old cliche..”You Reap What You Sow” and that may be a source of reflection. But this moment must feel exhilarating now and have fun and enjoy it. Next week,time to hit the streets again.

  • Bob Halstead

    Long overdue
    None of the powers that be have nurtured a sustainability to bode for the future of the City which is a disservice
    Go you all made it your business to start a revolution on your own. The encouraging part is no WIIFM (What’s In It For Me)
    So it will take a lot of sacrifice for you all to sustain this movement over time. I’m impressed with the commitment I’ve seen. I’ve enjoyed getting to know many of you
    Keep having a good time!

  • The Bridgeport Kid

    Bridgeport City Hall, with the conivance of the City Council, has been giving away the ranch acre by acre, for years. Successive administrations have given out multiple-decade tax abatements to corporate interests, passed ‘em out like party favors. That is corporate welfare, giving them a free ride. The city can’t tax the land owners so Black Rock and the North End property owners are taxed beyond comprehension.

    The city of Bridgeport is stuck with properties contaminated by industrial pollutants and toxic chemicals. A rubber factory has burned, TWICE. An abandoned perfume factory burned. Both buildings were full of barrels of God knows what, leeching into the ground. O & G has been spreading dust over residents for years. City Hall has been apathetic. (Maybe this is due to the fact many of the effected residents are renters.) 

    We have a failing public education system, arguably the worst in the state of Connecticut. The BOE is snarled by lawsuits, pettiness, bickering and a collective inability to focus on the needs of students.  Too many young people in Bridgeport settle differences through violence because they didn’t acquire conflict resolution skills in school. 

    More power to the young Democrats challenging the status quo. New political blood is badly needed. It will be an uphill effort. The DTC under the chairmanship of Mario Testa and his lieutenants will not give up without  a fight. 

  • Lisa Parziale

    Kid that’s a good post. I said I’d step up and I did, however, unless the new blood watches closely, integrates with the sincere old guard willing to guide them, and never forget why they got together to make a difference where they can, they have a chance. But, if for one second they underestimate the cunning, experienced establishment, they will be gone in the time it took them to make an entrance. Bridgeport politics is a “contact sport” with hundreds of years of combined experience. They have to work their way through the weeds, use discretion, and don’t ever be afraid to vote their minds, hearts and conscience. I put my heart in this one, my responsibility is to watch and listen to what my new Councilmen do. And, btw, it was my pleasure.

  • Jennifer Buchanan

    This city fell completely apart under the old guard’s watch. This new generation is the future of this city, they will have to live in what they create. Soon the old guard will be voting from the grave if history repeats itself. Yes, respect your elders, listen to their stories and take what worked for them before and tweek it to make it work for you.

  • Ron Mackey

    Well, looking at this picture it doesn’t look like there are many blacks, I the organization is not like that especially when there are so many black voters in Bridgeport.

  • Donald Day

    Politics are like the Janet Jackson song, What have you done for me lately. To the GBYD don’t start patting yourself on the back just yet, but remember, The race is not given to the swift nor the strong but he who endures until the end. The DTC isn’t going anywhere are you?

  • Lisa Parziale

    Ron and Don I cautioned early on that the group is not diverse, and as a small group do not represent the demographics of our City. With that said, I gave two young men the benefit of my knowledge, experience and hard work. My job regarding that commitment is over and was successful. If the YD’s don’t reach out to other young potential individuals that reflect diversity and inclusiveness, for sure the three of us, and many more will have to make that decision for them. For now, the jury’s out, I will continue to help, assist, give advice, while watching their performance closely. My involvement was not a blanket endorsement by any means, they have to get in touch with the issues of the City, and use their youth and energy to make the difference that’s expected of them.

  • Donald Day

    Lisa, my son’s fiance is a member of GBYD and she ain’t white. There are other Blacks that are member’s, but my best guess is that they’re not in it for the photo op. That’s just my opinion as she and I have never discussed this issue.

    • Lisa Parziale

      Well Don, that’s good. But I’ve spent the past two months, every day, in my family room as their headquarters, and I haven’t seen yet, what you have. I’ll pay better attention, until then, there’s a serious deficit in Bridgeport’s representation.

    • The Bridgeport Kid

      The GBYD is representative of Bridgeport’s melting pot community , much more so than the DTC’s old boy’s choir.

      It would be a cause for celebration if this group of young turks took control of the City Council chamber. They must be resolute, steely confident in their their ambition to make the city of Bridgeport a better place.

  • John Marshall Lee

    Perhaps the YD can currently read for the first time, or re-read the Charter and at least scan the Ordinances as a way of acquainting themselves with the manner in which civic matters are supposed to proceed.
    Often enough exceptions to the rules are found and they matter, but even when things are pointed out (as in SEE SOMETHING, SAY SOMETHING) it does not follow as night follows day that it will happen. Lots of habits have developed that guide things rather than the regulations and it does not lead to “best practices”.

    The other matter that needs attention is money and I enjoy company. Tonight the Budget and Appropriations Committee rescheduled their meeting from last Monday night. Some eye-opening changes in the budget just passed having nothing to do with State revenues not yet approved. Time will tell.

    • Lauren Gray

      Thanks, John Marshall Lee. As you know and have guided us, many of us have read the Charter. A few of us have read it with you. We will continue to do our work and grow to make the city better. And of course we will encourage our members to read the Charter, as well as those in office to do the same. And we’ll continue to do our best to hold officials accountable.

  • Frank Gyure

    I perceive a fault line in the current YD’s situation. The question will be if bridges can be built or will there need to a fissure.

  • Lauren Gray

    I’m very proud of GBYD’s work during the primaries this season to push to get young Democrats elected. Many of our members canvassed, phonebanked, donated and volunteered for many of the campaigns. The picture above is a small portion of our members and the people in that photo, myself included, are a diverse group in many ways. We obviously have a lot of work to continue to do, but this was a great email and statement from President Constance Vickers. We had our deserved celebratory moments and now we will move on to November. Our work has just begun and I’m very proud of this group of diverse members and can’t wait for our group to grow and continue to make a difference in the city.

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