Moses Casts His Staff, Pereira Parted From City Council Committee Assignments

File image: Maria Pereira and Ernie Newton during happier times.

A defiant Maria Pereira Monday night was stripped of committee assignments by the City Council for refusing to apologize for disparaging remarks she made about Ernie Newton who sits next to her during full council meetings.

Several council members, including Newton, claim that the volatile Pereira broke down in tears when a solid majority of council members voted for censure and removal from the Contracts and Education/Social Services committees.

This means, barring an apology, Pereira has no votes in committee and her voice is essentially silenced from debate.

Despite her own scrapes with the law, Pereira will often broad stroke her enmity for people by conveniently bringing up their past. They become “felon” this and “felon” that even though she has supported candidates with felony records and asks her Upper East Side constituency of ex-offenders for their votes for public office.

Several council members are among the reentry community including Newton, Fred Hodges who works in reentry and Jorge Cruz.

About 20 years ago Newton was convicted of public corruption and sentenced to five years in federal lockup. He resigned his seat in the state senate. He spoke of the disproportionate sentences that people of color face in the judicial system, calling himself the “Moses of my people” a comment that is often good-naturedly echoed in the political community.

Newton, several years ago, made a political comeback winning a seat on the City Council that kicked off his political career in 1981. He also works in the reentry community helping ex-offenders in the pursuit of life skills and employment.

Pereira supported Joe Ganim in his return to the mayoralty in 2015 running on a second-chance message. Soon after they had a political falling out, a common occurrence with Pereira’s political relationships. The list of break-ups runs down the street, around the corner, across city boundaries and into the next county.

A number of council members prevailed upon Council President Aidee Nieves to put this to a vote.

The litigious Pereira, according to council members, claimed she would take this action to court and promised to run primaries next year against all council members voting to sanction her.

“I’m trying to bring decorum to the council,” says Newton “so we don’t have what happened when she was on the Board of Education,” a reference to the often loud clashes she had with other board members when she served on the education body.

“If she ever found it in her heart to use her skills for the betterment of the city, she would be a hell of a person,” says Newton. “But she uses everything to go against people.”

Newton and Pereira have had quite the political sparring matches over the years including a literal pissing contest in 2019 when they challenged each other to urine tests to detect foreign substances.

A number of council members observe that Pereira’s under a lot stress to deliver a campaign-manager win for State Rep. Jack Hennessy who’s engaged to an August 9 Democratic primary battle with City Councilman Marcus Brown.



  1. Re-entry specialists, churches and politicians, read this:
    Affordable Housing without gentrification –>.
    Martin Muoto shows California how to build profitable Section 8 housing, minimize gang activity and lower crime rates. He has celebrity endorsers, money and fame — all without public money!
    This is a much better topic.

  2. The man, the myth, the LEGEND Ernie Newton.

    Seems like Maria F*cked around and FOUND OUT. I don’t know Maria personally, except for our limited interaction on Ganim Primary ’15. Appears that she’s truly persona non grata now.

    I just know I was always ducking out of the campaign office for a cigarette when she was around though… lol

  3. Jesus’ statement “If anyone of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her” is found in John 8. Jesus was teaching in the temple when the scribes and Pharisees (City Council member’s) brought to Him a woman who had been caught in the act of unapologizing and they asked Him if she should be stoned as required by the Law of Moses. Not to be confused by the Self -Serving Hypocrite Felon Moses from the East End of Bridgeport, if at anytime while talking to the East End Moses keep checking for your wallet!…………….. To God be The Glory, right Hypocrite Moses!?

      1. If Moses saw Ernie Newton on his yacht, he’d instruct the crew to toss him overboard!
        In a related matter, politicians are accustomed to using labels. If the felony occurred in another industry, that’s hitting below the belt. But if the crime happened in politics that’s reason to pontificate, reason to defend your chosen / elected profession and reason to be immune from censure.
        Rumor Mill new book:
        Censorship for Sissies
        by Bridgeport CC

  4. JimFox, you are one of the wisest to contribute to this blog. Intelligence and fearlessness are feared by some members of this present City Council, and Maria possesses both. “Some” of the members will try to silence her, but they will never beat her. Her constituents will continue to reelect her for as long as she chooses to run for office. My 20 years of experience enlightened me on where the dynamics of personalities are concerned. If she chooses to remain on the City Council she will wave goodbye to the lessor-than members who will be replaced by better candidates, but she will remain. Her constituents respect and admire her for her well-intentioned efforts. As a woman and leader on the Council, I took my knocks anyway my adversaries choose to give them. But they didn’t beat me, I left after 20 years on my terms. Chin up Maria, pick your fights one at a time, and you will have the last laugh!

  5. Lisa
    I’ve always respect you. As a Former President of the City Council (1981-85) you and I served together. We never disrespected one another. Maria feels she can disrespect anyone but don’t disrespect her. Lisa, you know as well as i do one must learn to work together in order to get anything done. Maria has never been able to keep a partner from her district because it’s her way or no way. Lisa yes, she may be strong in the 138th district.
    Lisa if you truly want to help her. Teach her in order to get thing done in your district and our City one must learn to work with others not disrespect them. The City Council Voted 15-1 because of disrespect she’s shown to her colleagues. This is why she was removed from her committees. Jim Fox I’m not going to respond to you.

    1. The ink has dried.
      Ernie Newton will be disrespecting Bridgeport taxpayers for the next twelve years thanks to the recent open-ended tax break granted Steelpointe’s developers. He’s giving away that which isn’t his. He’s robbing his constituents to pay the wealthy.
      And when he disparages Maria Pereira for her antics, he misunderstands the combative nature of Bridgeport politics. I urge the CC to revoke the sanctions. What’s been done can be undone.
      Ernie Newton only has a voice here because management gives him one!

      Full disclosure: Local Eyes = Paul Griffith, the owner of and

      1. LOCAL EYES, first of all I wasn’t on the City Council that deal for SteelPoint was done under the Finch administration. Local eyes you should crawl under the Rock you came from. Why don’t you come down to the city council? Maybe you could plead for a pardon for her. Just maybe she could move to Blackrock seeing you care so much.

    2. I’m sure in his infinite wisdom, The Pastor Anthony Bennett knows that two wrongs do not make a right. (Though in Matthew 5:38-39) I’m also sure he encourages his church to turn the other cheek.


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