The Bridgeport, Pelto Poach Factor In Malloy’s Reelection

Malloy in Bridgeport Saturday.

Governor Dan Malloy on Saturday visited Bridgeport’s Democratic campaign headquarters Downtown hoping to energize a voter base that delivered a 14,000-vote plurality in his razor-thin win over Republican Tom Foley in 2010. Malloy enters the gut of the campaign season with the specter of Jonathan Pelto poaching votes from him in what is shaping up as another tight general election for a second four-year term.

Pelto says he’s about halfway home in his effort to secure roughly 7500 certified signatures of registered voters in Connecticut to place his name on the statewide ballot in November as a petitioning candidate. Pelto has several campaign operatives on the ground in Bridgeport securing petition signatures. He has until August 6 to submit signatures to elections officials.

Pelto, a political and communications strategist, has become a relevant player in the campaign landscape for his appeal to education voters. Pelto, from his website, has taken long and hard positions against Malloy betraying progressive sensibilities such as his embrace of Common Core education standards and supporting the state takeover of Bridgeport schools that was eventually overturned by the Connecticut Supreme Court.

Pelto, Malloy, and the Republican gubernatorial team of State Senator John McKinney and Bridgeport resident David Walker addressed the Connecticut Working Families Party on Saturday. Malloy is expected to receive the WFP endorsement.

In 2010, Tom Foley received more votes for governor on the Republican line than Malloy received on the Democratic line. The 20,000-vote difference was the Connecticut Working Families Party line where Malloy’s name also appeared for an extra 26,308 votes. Combined with his Democratic vote haul, Malloy was elected governor by roughly 6,000 votes following a grueling election-day ballot shortage in Bridgeport that created chaos and made national headlines.

But Pelto’s presence on the ballot provides a landing spot for education advocates opposed to Malloy, but also suspicious of the eventual Republican nominee. Foley and McKinney will face off in an August 12 primary.



  1. To honest, I Have never heard of the guy. Seriously, never. I never even read the blog with his GQ picture. Does anyone even know who he is? Not to be mean, I have just never heard of him.

    1. As I stated in a previous forum about him last week, I never heard of him either. I’ve asked some friends and they haven’t a clue. He’s throwing his hat in the ring to be a spoiler … a la Ralph Nader.

      1. How strange is it Godiva and Steve have never heard of Jonathan Pelto? Lennie has been posting links to many articles for two years now. It’s time to read sources of news and blog articles other than OIB. Those who have never flipped a coin never see a different side.

        1. Much to your chagrin, Joel, I AM A 24-HOUR NEWS JUNKIE, however there are certain news items not worth reading. Mr. Pelto would be one of them. I agree with Godiva, he is a spoiler. I do not believe Malloy has anything to worry about. Remember, Malloy won without the support of the Mayor.

        2. Joel–is it safe to assume you’ll be on the Pelto campaign bandwagon? Why assume I don’t read other news sources besides OIB? I don’t read every article written by Lennie, only ones that interest me and honestly speaking, Pelto is not in that category.

  2. Pelto is worried about Malloy betraying progressive ideals? I thought Malloy has been wrong on education issues but on other issues Pelto is talking through his rear end.
    Malloy increased the minimum wage, fought for expanded health care for the poor and struggling middle class and signed into law the first mandatory sick-leave policy.
    All Pelto will do is help elect corrupt businessman Tom Foley who as a “management turnaround specialist” specialized in leveraging companies to buy other companies and then leaving the employees high and dry without jobs or the pensions they worked for. How is that progressive? And if you don’t like Malloy’s education policy, Foley is even more likely to expand for-profit schools and will likely institute vouchers for private religious schools, not exactly progressive. And it is no secret Foley is a great fan of Wisconsin governor Scott Walker who has been busy trying to destroy labor unions both private and public.
    Seems the least progressive vote anyone could make would be to waste their vote on Pelto.

    1. “Malloy increased the minimum wage, fought for expanded health care for the poor and struggling middle class and signed into law the first mandatory sick-leave policy.”

      The minimum wage is going to reach the $10.10 level in three years. By that time with inflation and tax increases, minimum-wage workers will still be poor. Employers are cutting working hours to reduce the cause of the wage increase and limiting working hours to 30 in order to avoid having to provide healthcare. Businesses will be passing the buck on to the consumer. How does any of this make things better?

      Did you forget the highest tax increase in state history; the biggest cut to Social Services to the tune of $120,000,000; borrowing $750,000,000? This was just to balance the budget that still isn’t balanced. The Office of Fiscal Analysis is projecting a $1.4 billion deficit for 2016. Malloy disagrees with such projections, yet won’t give us his projection. Why do you think he changed his mind about the $55 to $110 refund to taxpayers? It’s not because we’re on a solid financial footing, that’s for sure!
      You guys don’t have to take my word for it–just ask Bill Finch:

  3. Malloy it is. Let’s not forget Bridgeport has been the recipient of millions under Malloy and considering Finch supported Lamont, that is all the more reason to support Malloy.

  4. And lest we forget, Malloy supported Obamacare and Medicaid expansion that help those who can’t afford decent medical care, something Foley would love to dismantle.

    1. David–the healthcare support may be a key factor. Pres. Obama has praised Malloy’s efforts on healthcare. Factor in Malloys’s support of the minimum wage increase as well, I could see a scenario where he gives Malloy some type of campaign support. We saw the effect a few years ago when he stopped into Bridgeport to support Himes (insert ballot shortage joke–LOL). Obama may not be popular in some parts of the state, but I would think he is popular in the urban areas and he does drive voter activity. Interested to see what happens.

  5. If the people would think in the long term instead of the handout instinct, they would realize Malloy is against the thousands of jobs that could be brought to the city. This is because he is being paid off by the Eastern tribes and the rich from Greenwich, New Canaan and Darien. Malloy is only thinking about his own future. I would love to see for once, what the citizens of the Park City would do for themselves instead of begging Hartford.

    Foley should act like a man instead of a politician and address the issue instead of hiding behind silence.


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