Baker Qualifies To Face Newton In Primary

Board of Education member Andre Baker has qualified for the ballot to challenge party-endorsed Ernie Newton in an August 12 Democratic primary, setting up a contest between two candidates with East End voter bases.

Baker received word Friday afternoon he had secured enough petition signatures to challenge Newton for Connecticut’s 124th State House seat occupied by a retiring Don Clemons. Newton had the seat prior to Clemons.

“Last year Baker promised the people he would serve them on the Board of Education,” says Newton, “now he’s saying he wants to be in the legislature. What’s he running for next?”

Newton seeks a return to the legislature following his conviction on corruption charges nearly 10 years ago that forced his resignation from the State Senate. Two years ago he lost a close State Senate primary to Andres Ayala who’s being challenged by City Librarian Scott Hughes in an August 12 primary.

Two years ago in the State Senate primary Newton performed strong in his East End voter base. The State House district covers the East End of the city and runs north up close to the Beardsley Park area. Baker served the East End on the City Council for several years. He operates a funeral home in the district. Baker will now try to raise $5,000 in small donations to qualify for Connecticut’s Citizens Election Program of publicly financed races to receive a $27,000 grant.

Newton is precluded from the voluntary program as a result of a new law the legislature passed last year. Newton is raising money outside of the program.



  1. This is about who can bring the money to Bridgeport and improve the quality of life for these individuals. I think Andre Baker is the man for the job.

    On a side note: North Main Street has a new Chinese/Japanese Hibachi/sushi buffet. Lunch was excellent at $6.99, place is deceiving from outside. Very large. Double Xing Cuisine. Parking in rear. Food very good. Hibachi excellent. Teppanyaki no longer only buffet in town (for Asian) … Brazilian Pantanel and Terra Brasilia still great deals.

  2. If Andre Baker should win this seat and (I hope) resigns from the BOE, how would his replacement be selected? To clarify my statement, if he wins the seat I don’t think he can then effectively serve on the BOE. For me it is either/or.

  3. Even if you are ticked off at Andre, I fail to see what would be gained by sending Ernie back to the state legislature. Isn’t he still facing campaign finance charges? Ernie is a very likeable person but that doesn’t mean he should be sent back to the legislature. No one there will take him seriously.

    1. I too wish Andre victory at the polls, although I do not live in that district. I am no fan of Moses. I simply meant I do not think he can effectively hold both positions and should he prevail against Ernie, then he should resign his seat on the BOE. That is all.

      1. Auden Grogens and Jack Hennessy are two I have worked with–testified for bills they have sponsored. They both have respect and solid relationships with other legislators.

  4. flubadub, I hear he intends to stay on the BOE if he wins. He’d have too much to chew on and then again, he always changes his mind on a daily basis. Any word on how Charles Hare did?

  5. Father

    He never made a fortune, or a noise
    In the world where men are seeking after fame;
    But he had a healthy brood of girls and boys
    Who loved the very ground on which he trod.
    They thought him just little short of God;
    Oh you should have heard the way they said his name–

    There seemed to be a loving little prayer
    In their voices, even when they called him ‘Dad.’
    Though the man was never heard of anywhere,
    As a hero, yet somehow understood
    He was doing well his part and making good;
    And you knew it, by the way his children had
    Of saying ‘Father.’

    He gave them neither eminence nor wealth,
    But he gave them blood untainted with a vice,
    And opulence of undiluted health.
    He was honest, and unpurchable and kind;
    He was clean in heart, and body, and in mind.
    So he made them heirs to riches without price–
    This father.

    He never preached or scolded; and the rod–
    Well, he used it as a turning pole in play.
    But he showed the tender sympathy of God.
    To his children in their troubles, and their joys.
    He was always chum and comrade with his boys,
    And his daughters–oh, you ought to hear them say

    Now I think of all achievements ’tis the least
    To perpetuate the species; it is done
    By the insect and the serpent, and the beast.
    But the man who keeps his body, and his thought,
    Worth bestowing on an offspring love-begot,
    Then the highest earthly glory he was won,
    When in pride a grown-up daughter or a son
    Says ‘That’s Father.’


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