No ABracadabra For General Election, Queen Lydia’s Dubious Operation

Lydia Martinez
Lydia Martinez’ AB operation rarely disappoints.

As far as absentee ballot action goes, what a difference an election cycle makes. As of Monday just 346 absentee ballots citywide had been returned to the Town Clerk’s Office for next Tuesday’s general election, about half of what had been received one week prior to the September 10th Democratic primary for school board and four City Council Districts. One reason for this was the hotly contested primary in the East Side 137th District where the city’s queen of absentee ballots City Councilwoman Lydia Martinez once again lost on the machines but prevailed with a mighty absentee ballot operation that also carried in her city employee running mate Milta Feliciano.

Yes indeed, more than one third of Lydia and Milta’s votes came via absentee ballots. They had twice as many votes by absentee voting as their opponents Maria Valle and Aidee Nieves. Lydia has a remarkable crystal ball when it comes to her voters. Amazing, all those folks who required an absentee ballot for the contested primary do not need one in the general election where Lydia enjoys a 10 to 1 registration advantage over her Republican opponents. In this general election no need for Lydia to entice her constituency with ferry trips to Port Jefferson, bus trips to casinos or other destinations of interest, with absentee ballot applications poised for the grateful.

Legitimate campaigning for serial absentee ballot voters, mostly among the elderly, exists. Bridgeport has a core group of seniors who cannot make it to the polls as well as others who will be away election day. Connecticut is just one of a handful of states with excuse-only absentee voting, courtesy of its state constitution with specific rules of engagement. Most states allow early voting without excuse. Connecticut electors will decide on the early-voting question in the 2014 general election. Meanwhile, Lydia will continue to work her peeps and perhaps even next year for a possible run for State House?

The Connecticut State Elections Enforcement Commission has authorized an investigation into Martinez’ absentee ballot activity for the September 10th primary. Martinez has been fined twice the past several years for election law violations.



  1. Here’s an idea! Instead of calling this all sorts of things and wondering at the majesty of it all, let’s just call it what it is. Fraud. Those who commit fraud should be prosecuted and thrown in jail. End of subject. No Queen of anything. We shouldn’t elect them to office again and again. We should prosecute them. Those who sanction this behavior–whether they be elected officials, city employees or town committee members or their friends should be held liable too. Enough. Throw them out or put them in jail.

  2. Lennie, is there a breakdown of the 346 ABs returned by district? How many are from the 130th? The figure provides an outlook as to the AB operation in the district so far. Will there be an additional 100 ABs from the 130th by next week? ABs may be the deciding factor in the Council race of the 130th. Baffled, I hear you! The AB issue is being taken lightly by the Secretary of the State and Elections enforcement. We need to stand up and be more vocal on this issue and take it further than complaining on OIB. We need to take it to the steps of the Secretary of the State and Elections Enforcement Commission. I’ve filed two complaints the SEEC voted to investigate. I can’t tell you what they mean by “investigate.” One thing I can tell you is these investigations drag on for too long. Let me give you an example: Maria Valle and her partner lost due to the ABs. There was a so-called recount after a tie. The Registrar of Voter rejected hundreds of September 10, 2013 primary ABs. The recount did not include any rejected ballots pertaining to the 137th district.
    There was no mention of this in any of the complaints as they were filed before the day of the primary. Valle allegedly lost by one vote. Will the same happen to one or several candidates in the November elections?

  3. She is on autopilot because Valle and Nieves, unfortunately, are not on the ballot. She has no competition, although I understand the Republican on line A for city council, Luis Colon, is a man worthy of great respect. I hope that voters notice the name and vote for him.


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