Underdog Ganim Lands Boots Boost From Union Coalition Against Front-Runner Lamont

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Ganim greets union supporters.

Mayor Joe Ganim on Monday culled a gubernatorial campaign boost from organized labor that represents nearly 8,000 union households in Connecticut, a much-needed lift of boots on the ground in the face of party-endorsed Ned Lamont enjoying a majority of union support that helps drive turnout in Democratic primaries, in addition to the millions of his personal wealth he will spend for the August 14 primary. A coalition of unions representing electrical workers, operating engineers and plumbers and pipefitters rallied at a newly configured East End boat yard for Ganim.

Three weeks from the Democratic primary for governor Ganim received the endorsement of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 488 of Monroe, the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 30 in North Stonington, the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 478 in Hamden and the United Association Local 777 Plumbers and Pipefitters in Meriden.

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Union leader Craig Metz.

Operating Engineers leader Craig Metz declared “Bridgeport needs to be first. It’s always Bridgeport that pulls in the Democratic Party … We support Mayor Joe Ganim for the solid commitment that he has made to rebuilding Connecticut one block at a time and, the hard work that he has done promoting employment opportunities and creating the type of economic stability on which our state’s middle class is built. We fully recognize the unprecedented challenges that Joe Ganim has faced and overcome throughout his career in public service.”

These endorsements represent an outlier for Ganim against Lamont. Why go against conventional support? Union leaders cited their history with Ganim, local school construction, Steelpointe Harbor redevelopment work and potentially future work with MGM’s proposed waterfront gaming destination in Bridgeport that Ganim embraces and Lamont generally tiptoes, something that requires support from the next governor and legislative approval. Lamont has recently hardened his support for a casino, pushed there by Bridgeport’s Democratic-rich votes, as reported by the Connecticut Mirror.

“Ned supports an open competitive bidding process as a potential way to bring a casino that will create jobs and economic development in Bridgeport,” the campaign said. “He also wants to explore other economic development opportunities that might serve and meet the needs of Bridgeport residents. Ned would welcome a multi-million dollar investment from a developer that wished to make Bridgeport a resort and destination, providing entertainment venues, local jobs and opportunities to the people of Bridgeport and beyond.”

“Plain and simple, Joe Ganim has helped put food on the table for our members and their families,” said Local 777 Business Manager Michael Rosario. “He recognizes that supporting groups with great training programs in place provides Connecticut residents with a path to a career, not just a job. Careers that provide economic security for men and women through their working years and into retirement. Being a person who connects with people gives Joe Ganim a great insight of the struggles the average worker faces. I believe that this insight better prepares him to make critical decisions as they affect real lives.”

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City Council President Aidee Nieves rallies crowd.

City Council President Aidee Nieves was front and center at the endorsement rallying the crowd to support Ganim. If Ganim shocks Connecticut to become governor she’d replace him as mayor.

“While working with Mayor Ganim on many projects in Bridgeport, I noticed his desire to do the best for the city and its residents,” said IBEW Local 488 Business Manager Peter Carroll. “We feel he can bring the same commitment to the state and the people that live here. He is rebuilding the largest city in the state and he could do the same for Connecticut.”

The union event was well attended by reporters from the Hartford Courant, Hearst Media and Connecticut Mirror, some of the many media outlets who were shocked by Ganim’s return to the mayoralty in 2015, following his 2003 conviction on federal corruption charges.

Ganim will be outspent heavily in the final weeks by Lamont, the Greenwich plutocrat who enjoys many financial and organizational campaign advantages.

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24 comments

    1. Bob Walsh, nothing new here, Frank Carroll RETIRED:

      After more than 50 years of distinguished service to the IBEW, Second District International Vice President Frank J. Carroll retired Jan. 1. International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

      The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Second District today (Sept. 18th, 2011) endorsed the reelection of Mayor Bill Finch.

      “Mayor Finch’s guidance, leadership and ability to make the tough decisions have ushered the City of Bridgeport through one of the worst economies we have ever seen” said Frank Carroll, International Vice President, IBEW second district. “We are proud to endorse Mayor Finch for four more years of moving Bridgeport forward. He believes in good construction jobs for labor unions and will continue to work hard to help create opportunities for our members in his next term.”

      http://onlyinbridgeport.com/wordpress/electrical-workers-endorse-finch/#more-24846

  1. In other news:
    This stupid, poorly though-out, comment by Langston puts legitimacy to the City Attorney’s concern. “One of those, Councilman Kyle Langan, another freshman and a vocal Ganim critic, in an email to Jackson wrote: “I’m deeply troubled to read of the violation experienced by your son and family, though I unfortunately am not surprised. We see examples of our neighbors experiencing things like this regularly and maintain the same (police department) leadership … I’m here to support whatever efforts you want to make to bring attention to the cultural shift necessary in our police.”

    https://www.ctpost.com/local/article/Bridgeport-stun-gun-complaint-draws-City-Hall-s-13098268.php

  2. I watch Ganim’s debate with Lamont over the weekend and he took Ned to the woodshed! I hope no one is underestimating Joe, as retail campaigning and being the underdog work in his favor. If he should get the nomination, he would almost guarantee a republican victory.

  3. *** Again, weather you love or hate Joe, he’s a fighter when it comes to politics & he knows how to play the game,”very well”! Joe will win in Bpt; New Haven & Hartford, along with maybe another urban city or town but it will not be enough in the end. Afterward its back to finish some of his leftover work & promises in Bpt. Sometimes, there’s no place like home Joe, no place like home! ***

    1. Mojo,once Joe loses this primary and realizes his pipedream is over,I think he may go haywire again.He’s not going to take losing easily.

      1. Frank,he isn’t going anywhere,there is too much $$ to be made,besides,whatelse can he do for a paycheck??..He’s finishing his term and taking everything he could get away with..

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