Death Penalty Politics, Plus: SuBy’s Guber Mission

You know how I feel about the death penalty?

Big waste of court time, posturing and money by wimpy pols fearful of the soft-on-crime tag. Barack is for the death penalty, you say? Well, Barack’s wimpy too on the issue and I love Barack. New Jersey and New York have abolished it and most of New England doesn’t have the death penalty.

Connecticut spends $100k per year per death-row inmate, and execution has only been used once in 50 years for a guy that wanted to die. That’s the irony of the whole death penalty argument. Costs more to fry a man than isolate him in a cell. For me the best form of incarceration for a killer is a long, slow, lonely lifetime in a super max. Plus, I don’t trust the government to decide who should live or die. Me, I say don’t kill babies and don’t kill adults. (Isn’t that the Catholic thing to do?) From Chris Keating of the Hartford Courant:

The state House of Representatives voted Wednesday night, the fourth anniversary of the execution of serial killer Michael Ross, to abolish the death penalty in Connecticut and instead impose life in prison without the possibility of release.

The historic vote, by 90 to 56, came at about 7:45 p.m. after more than five hours of emotional and passionate debate on both sides of the issue as lawmakers said either the death penalty remains necessary for justice or is a punishment that should never be rendered by the state government.

Despite the vote, the chances of the penalty being eliminated in Connecticut are slim. Republican Gov. M. Jodi Rell repeated her support for the penalty this week as the House was preparing for the debate.

“I have always said that I support the death penalty because I do believe that there are some crimes that are so heinous that the death penalty is the only option,” Rell told reporters at the state Capitol complex. “I believe in the death penalty.”

Bridgeport’s legislative delegation in the House all voted for repeal. From Ken Dixon’s piece in the Connecticut Post:

“Is it indeed just to kill a human being who has killed others?” asked Rep. Christopher L. Caruso, D-Bridgeport, a former supporter of the death penalty who voted for the repeal. “The death by lethal injection is just as wrong as the murder of an individual. Don’t confuse justice with murder.”

Our fearless  governor says it’s not revenge, it’s justice. Baloney. Call it what it is … revenge. And, of course, Rell will veto the death penalty reversal should it pass the State Senate, even though her prisons have recently freed a couple of DNA-aided inmates for a near lifetime of crimes they didn’t commit.

SuBy’s Strategy

I love the power of incumbency, especially when it’s used as a platform for higher office. Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz makes no apology for moving around the state to talk about jobs, education and business growth in the context of her official position.

You want to form a business in Connecticut? Well, you do it through SuBy’s office. So it allows SuBy, locked in a battle for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, to move around the state for roundtable discussions about this and that. Am I complaining? No way. If I’m advising her I’d do the same thing. See SuBy news releae below:

Bysiewicz To Lead Latino Small Business Roundtable in Bridgeport

Secretary of the State to Connect Latino entrepreneurs in Growing Market with Federal & State Resources, Business Tools, how to get Stimulus Funds

Bridgeport: Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz will host a Latino Small Business Roundtable on Friday, May 15, 2009 at 9:00 a.m. at the Bridgeport City Hall Annex in partnership with the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Greater Bridgeport, Inc. and the federal Small Business Administration. Moderated by Secretary Bysiewicz, the roundtable will feature short presentations by Mr. Hector Bauza, President of Bauza Associates Hispanic Marketing; Mr. Julio Casiano, Business Development Specialist with the Connecticut Small Business Administration; Mr. Nelson Merchan, President of, and Mrs. Raquel Santiago-Martinez, Director of Lending with the Greater new Haven Community Loan Fund. A discussion with all the panelists will follow the presentations.

“Despite our current economic climate, the Latino marketplace is still growing substantially in Connecticut , and we will do whatever we can to encourage the growth and sustainability of Latino-owned businesses,” said Secretary Bysiewicz, Connecticut ‘s chief Business Registrar. “We also have a responsibility to make sure minority-owned businesses get an appropriate share of federal stimulus dollars from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, since we know unemployment has hit the minority population especially hard.”

Among the topics to be discussed are: how Latino small businesses can utilize the internet as a resource to expand their visibility and client base, new SBA loan criteria and opportunities under the Connecticut Four Point Plan and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, essential aspects of a good business plan to secure a commercial loan, and how some Latino small businesses can position themselves to join the State of Connecticut vendor system. This event is free and open to the general public. Representatives of various Latino chamber and small business groups, legislators, and small business owners will be in attendance.

According to data issued by the Small Business Administration (SBA), in 2007 there were close to 13,000 Latino small businesses in Connecticut, or 4.1% of the more than 316,000 businesses registered in Connecticut. That figure may be close to 14,000 by now as Latino and other minority-owned businesses are growing at more than six times the rate of all firms in the United States.

Latino purchasing power in Connecticut is estimated at close to $9 billion dollars, and the Latino population is now the largest and fastest-growing minority population in the state according to recent U.S. Census estimates. Yet, according to the Connecticut Latino and Puerto Rican Affairs Commission (LPRAC), Latino businesses receive a much smaller percentage of government contracts than do other firms, a statement documented in a study released by the Urban Institute. According to that study, Minority Business Enterprises receive only 57 cents for every dollar. For Latino businesses that figure may be smaller, this despite the fact that Connecticut ‘s current MBE procurement goal is 20% of a 25% allocation of the allotted amount to small businesses.

Part of the problem is lack of awareness and positioning on the part of Latino small businesses and part of the problem is with current implementation of the legislation. In addition, Latino small businesses often lack the knowledge and expertise to develop strong business and marketing plans to be able to secure small business loans. Opportunities now exist through the 2009 America Recovery and Reinvestment Act and Governor Rell’s recently-announced “Four Point” Credit plan that will provide $100 million dollars in loans to Connecticut businesses in an effort to promote the free flow of credit in the state.

Mr. Julio Casiano, Business Development Specialist with the SBA in Connecticut said, “Latino small businesses must aggressively tap into these state and federal loan funds if they are to survive in the current economic climate.”

Recent studies have shown that Connecticut ‘s Latino population is among the most computer-savvy communities in the state, which means that Latino businesses must gain greater visibility through the internet as a viable marketing tool for their products and services and to expand their client base. For more information on the roundtable, please contact the Office of the Secretary of the State of Connecticut at (860) 509-6200



  1. A tired guy at the office grabbed the hot water and began making coffee.
    I said, instant human, just add coffee.
    He laughed so hard I made the sale.

    Good News: a good presentation takes a backseat to a well-timed statement.
    Bad News: (shrug) it was only a $50 sale.

  2. *** In CT the death penalty was a waste of taxpayers money & a lack of real justice for the family of the victims in general. Also with the wide use now of science like DNA samples, etc. many convicted of death penalty cases have in fact been found innocent of the crimes, years later! Let’s hope that if the sentence is life without the chance of parole, that there are no legal loopholes to drag out appeal after appeal. ***


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