Ganim Praises Trump, Newton: Joe Forgot About The People Who Got Him Elected

Trump, Ganim June 1994
Trump and Ganim in Bridgeport, 1994. WFSB photo.

It’s always good to have a relationship with a president but tricky if he repulses your voter base. That’s the position Mayor Joe Ganim’s in. He has a history with Donald Trump who toyed around with various city developments in the mid and late 1990s. After refusing to pay taxes on the former Jenkins Valve site that Trump owned he deeded the property over to the city and it became the home of Harbor Yard in 1998. Taxes were waived. For the most part Trump and Ganim had a good relationship. Ganim said some nice things about Trump in a CT Post article.

Ganim said he is not fearful of a Trump presidency. In April, he was spotted backstage when Trump held a rally in Bridgeport.

“I probably have more insight than … a lot of people do–anecdotes about his personality,” the mayor said Thursday.

“Give him a chance to take a deep breath and, I hope, come out with reassurances that the extreme part of his campaign was left behind,” Ganim said. “My sense is, you’ve got a good man there.”

Full story here.

For four years I served as a Trump media consultant. He worked against a casino when Bridgeport was proposed at the host site for gaming expansion fearing it would cannibalize his Atlantic City operation. Trump was particularly fond of Pleasure Beach and the city’s underutilized waterfront. Doesn’t hurt to know a president who might take your calls, right? That’s how Ganim looks at it. But his huggy remarks for Trump have bewildered some members of the black community.

“Joe forgot about the people who got him elected,” says former State Senator Ernie Newton about the heavily African American vote that elevated Ganim to victory over incumbent Bill Finch in last year’s Democratic primary on his way to a general election comeback victory. Newton says Trump’s positions on immigration and race preyed upon the fears of low-information white voters. “Black and brown voters, the people who got Joe elected will see the clock turned back under Trump. He has a total disrespect for our president. Joe Ganim would never be mayor if he said some of the things Trump said.”

Newton said it’s possible anti-Trump rallies that have popped up around the country will be organized in Bridgeport.

If a rally is organized by African American city ministers and they ask Ganim to join the protest, it would a tricky balancing act for Ganim. Trump has vocalized mixed messages about the rallies, both condemning them as a media concoction but also praising the passion of protesters.

And that’s what you get with Trump, a compliment here and attack there, lotsa mixed messages. How long is he capable of tempering his remarks both in the short- and long-term in a Washington that relies on patient deal-making? Trump knows how to cut a deal in a business environment. Government is a different animal. You campaign for show and govern for dough. You cannot be king as president. You must deal with Congress, promises made, things said on the campaign trail that aren’t always realized quickly. Trump’s in a fascinating spot because he was elected running against the political establishment, including Republican Party insiders.

It provides an opportunity for bipartisan results. If he can keep his tongue in check. How long will it be until frustration sets in? Words hurt.

Thousands of protesters feel the sting of Trump’s campaign remarks. What he now says, however, as president-elect (and in the future as president) is far more important.



  1. I am in full agreement with former State Senator Ernie Newton’s statement about Mayor Joe Ganim, “‘Joe forgot about the people who got him elected,’ says former State Senator Ernie Newton about the heavily African American vote that elevated Ganim to victory over incumbent Bill Finch in last year’s Democratic primary on his way to a general election comeback victory.” Now comes the question, what are we going to do about Mayor Ganim who forgot about the people who got him elected? Business as usual is over and that goes for all those blacks whom Ganim has given positions to in his administration because you are sitting there drawing a paycheck and you are scared to speak out.

  2. Ernie’s right, Ganim played the Black Community and others like a well-tuned Stradivarius. I’m sure Danny Roach had a lot to do with the tuning also. Three years comes pretty fast, right Ernie?
    Ganim’s new mantra “Hold the Line on Blacks!”

  3. The lesson to be learned in all this is sometimes Ganim and Trump would be much better off learning to keep their mouths shut.
    As to the Troll, f it. Some people just don’t have a sense of humor.

  4. Uh huh, I’m not surprised as Ron and I have been saying in this forum Joe Ganim pimped the Black community, no, the Black community let Joe Ganim pimp them into believing in the vernacular of the street, I got ya back. If you look up the word “opportunist” you’ll see a picture of Joe Ganim and I’m somewhat perplexed why it took Ernie this long to see this.

    1. donj, and the Republicans don’t give a damn about the black community. But I forgot, you are one of the few blacks the Republicans like, by the way donj, what have they done for you? Or are you trying to pass being white?

  5. I agree 100 percent with Ernie Newton’s commentary. Every time Trump made a horrific comment about any minority I was sick. The election is over. I am sad Clinton lost. She has won the popular vote. Means nothing. More Republicans voted for John McCain than Trump. The reason Trump won was because the Obama Coalition and Democrats, specifically Sanders supporters, did not vote and white women supported Trump.

    Spilled milk. No need to point fingers. The election is over. Joe Ganim is the Mayor of the largest city in the state. Was he supposed to criticize Trump? I do not think Ganim was praising Trump’s ignorant, hurtful, bigoted or racist comments. Ganim may in fact have voted for Trump or at least may say he did because he knows Trump is a vindictive guy.

    Personally, I hope Trump does change his hurtful rhetoric. I must remind Ernie there are in fact, black Republicans and Democrats who did in fact vote for Trump. There were muslims and Hispanics as well as women in general who voted for Trump. I was stunned but remain optimistic. People wanted change. Change is not always good. I do not think Trump will do half of the terrible things he said he would do, and Ernie, you should know a leopard doesn’t change their spots and the Black community was not the only group that voted for Ganim. They turned their backs on Finch and the only option was Torres.

    1. Stevie,
      Please don’t blame the minorities and liberals. The only one to blame is Hillary. She did not ignite the Democratic constituency. She as always was cautious and careful. She finally endorsed free college tuition but didn’t appear to really believe in it.
      She kept turning to Wall Street and celebrities to raise money to get out a message no one quite understood.

    2. No Steve, you’re wrong, Trump received fewer votes than both John McCain and Mitt Romney. Hillary lost not because Trump pulled Democrats, but because Democrats didn’t vote.

    3. Steve, blacks came out in record numbers to elected America’s first black President. Hillary Clinton and the Democrats knew two years ago no matter who the Democrats put up to run for President, there was no way they would get the same voter turnout in 2016. Bernie knew that and he attracted a different set of voters but Hillary couldn’t get the white females to come out en masse to put the first female President into office.

      If you don’t believe the Black community put Ganim back into office then just ask him and Danny Roach, plus he could never pay Rev. Stallworth back for setting Ganim up to give his coming to Jesus moment that started Ganim’s comeback.

      1. Ron, do you and Donald think with the same mind? Are you confusing my comment on the Obama Coalition with the black vote? I know the black vote was overwhelming in support of Hillary. She lost because Democrats in general didn’t vote.

        For the record, Sanders would have never won. The mentality of the youthful Sanders supporter thinking they were wise to sit home, well, you get what you get. Forget college tuition.

        I am still stunned but hopeful. I think Trump will do a good job. I do not believe he will undo most of Obamacare.

        I am hopeful. Not going to spend energy trashing the President Elect. I don’t have to. The protests going on around the country speak for themselves.

        Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders taking over the Democratic Party does not at all excite. I see eight years of Trump, and Giuliani and Gingrich anywhere in the administration is disturbing to me.

        Time will tell.

        BTW, Mackey, Walsh and Day. I was at Winthrop as the lone Democrat wearing a bright Marilyn Moore sweatshirt. Nobody can say I am not a good Democrat!

        1. Steve, once again you’re wrong. White women didn’t come out to support Hillary Clinton, they had a chance to put in the first female President but Hillary could not get white women whom they were counting on to come out to vote for her. The Democrats really had no game plan, they took it for granted, they lost everything, the House, the Senate, the White House, the Supreme Court because they put everything into trying to elect Hillary. In 2010 and 2014 elections the Democrats didn’t give Obama any help because they lost House and Senate seats in each election. Remember, the Republicans said on the first day Obama became President they would do everything they could to make sure Obama would be a one-term President.

          1. Ron Mackey–Are you and Donald Day drunk? I said white woman voted for Trump. Both of you keep making comments as though you are not reading my post and projecting. What’s your problem? My original post is on the money and everything I said, you and Day are making like I said the opposite. I actually had to read my post three times. It is pretty clear. No question about it and all facts!

        2. Thank you Steve for your open support of Marilyn. How many of your other DTC members were with you all day?
          You don’t have to tell Donald Day. He would have seen you since he was driving Marilyn all day.
          I was out in front of Madison for most of the day. There were two DTC members from the 132 out there. None from the 133rd. Sour grapes about the Moore primary?

          1. I will no longer speak for anyone but myself. I like the Moore red sweatshirt. Extremely loud, bringing attention to myself and Marilyn. I was there 7-12 then went to take mother to vote. Came back from 1-3. I needed to feel I contributed something.

  6. Mayor Ganim needs to realize right now in public and private schools in Bridgeport there are students who are truly scared. There are students who are fearful they will be forced to leave America. It’s so bad in some schools the students are openly talking about this to other students and teachers. I’ve had two students tell me this and ask me if that was true because they didn’t want their friends to leave and they are worried. This is more than just a Hispanic issue, it’s a problem with students from other countries. Having the mayor of Bridgeport saying positive things about President-elect Donald Trump in the media is really making things worse and he doesn’t even know it. I’m talking about young children are scared and they need answers, comfort, protection and leadership. This mayor is not providing any of those things, he needs to check into this yesterday.

  7. donj, better the Democratic party being the pimp rather than ignorance being your pimp, which is what I see in you. You’re the problem with being black in America, foreign-born kneegrows who think they are somewhat different than those of us whose ancestors built this country. Now you come here and ride the wave of prosperity while denigrating the brothers and sisters who built the surfboard you now ride. You disgust me, kid.

  8. Try out this idea.
    As a matter of timing, Mayor Ganim may not have called it at the “right” time, yet with the Trump election a reality, he could not have ethically and consciously avoided taking charge of getting his Trump position/viewpoint out ahead of the major connection that was going to be made in the media and by the public here in Bridgeport. The connection of the Donald Trump Years in this very City.

    Many of us know painfully well Donald Trump ignited a headlong drive of greed and corruption that ultimately brought down the Ganim administration along with the pain and suffering of City residents. Make no mistake, Trump was the catalyst!

    And today with an election upheaval upon us, Mayor Ganim sure as hell will keep the lessons given by Donald Trump during his Bridgeport casino phase as the life-changing lessons he has learned. These terrible Trump lessons will always remain clearly fixed in Joe Ganim’s memory and his conscience.

    I personally trust Mayor Ganim is maintaining a clear focus on the damage done by Donald Trump on his road to the Presidency.

    Try out this idea.
    He knows Donald Trump well enough to know as Mayor once again, he must protect the City of Bridgeport from the potential damage that could be inflicted from a Trump-led Presidency.

    City residents deserved a far different perspective from Ernie Newton. Attacking the ally is certainly not strategically wise. Perhaps in rushing to judgement, Ernie didn’t consider other Ganim-City of Bridgeport possibilities.

    1. carolanne curry, ally? To hell with ally, what does that have to with Donald Trump making racist statements and Mayor Ganim being silent? Carolanne, go to any black church in Connecticut tomorrow and then give us an update of what you hear.

    1. carolanne, a Westport resident, once again wants to speak on how Bridgeport voters may feel about comments made by Ganim regarding a racist, bigoted, sexist man who was just elected president.

      I remember the first meeting I attended in which Ms.Curry articulated her view regarding public education in Bridgeport when in my six years of involvement I had no recollection of her attending a single BoE meeting.

      I asked her if her view of public education was from her home in Westport.


  9. I had to respond to carolanne. Lennie did not write everything I said. Joe may know Mr. TRUMP but blacks and Hispanics support Joe. Mr. Trump while running for President made it clear. He would turn the clock back on us. A woman’s right to choose, Voting rights act, etc. Our Country is close to a CIVIL WAR. MR. TRUMP Preached Hatred. Joe must realize he has to be on the SIDE of those who SUPPORT HIM! And to my good brother Donald Day, I march to my own BEAT, lol.

  10. “One’s a born liar, the other’s convicted.”–Billy Martin, July 24, 1978.
    When history repeats itself, make sure you have a relevant quote that supports your story.

  11. Never heard so many crybabies. Listen folks, We the People were tired of the Establishment bullshit especially Crooked Hillary. Crackhead Newton, you are one to talk. The Moses of your People? You remember that statement before you went off to prison for corruption the first time? So how does Stratford Avenue look after all your years as a corrupt politician? Still a shithole. Democrats have been screwing blacks for the last 50 years. The party of slavery, handouts, anti-civil rights and the creators of the new plantations called the inner cities.

  12. Mr. Reyes, blacks didn’t know any better and were hoodwinked by the Democratic party, but what happened to the Hispanic voters? They saw the poisoning of the black condition and fought like hell to get on board. In fact they thought it was so good, they are happy because the Democratic party promised to hang them after the blacks.

  13. Jose, You have a lot of nerve. Didn’t you RUN for Party chair and lose? I’ll take a BAD Democrat OVER an ASSHOLE Republican any day. You may have VOTED Donald Trump. Please tell me WHAT Have you done in this CITY to make it BETTER For OUR PEOPLE!

  14. Ernie, don’t you remember what Whitney Houston said? Crack is whack. Crack kills. Stop smoking it. You have the wrong José, man. That’s what happens when you smoke crack, it fries your brain cells. I will repeat, you did nothing for your community when you represented them, only lined your pockets. Ganim should keep you at a distance before he ends up in jail for corruption once again.

    1. JOSE, you don’t know me and I’ll always stand up against injustice. Oh By the way, It takse a crackhead to know a crackhead, and I’ll always fight against People like you, go put your Sheet on! Donald Trump the Third.

  15. WOW, I just GOT a CALL on who Jose REYES really is from someone on OIB. He Ran for public office in the EAST SIDE but never could WIN a SEAT! And he had a Business in the East Side that is closed down. JOSE, I always respected you for trying.


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