Political Insurgents Gear Up For Petition Deadline

The ticket: Alma Maya for city clerk, Chris Caruso for town clerk, Marilyn Moore for mayor.

The intensity of the municipal elections will come into focus this week as primary petitions for opposition candidates must be submitted to the Registrar’s Office by 4 p.m. on Wednesday. Then the counting begins–actually it can start before if petition sheets are dropped off sooner–to validate signatures of five percent of registered voters in the city for respective party primaries taking place September 10.

The big prize is mayor.

State Senator Marilyn Moore, challenging Mayor Joe Ganim, is running a slate of citywide candidates for town clerk, city clerk, Board of Education and sheriff positions. Two-time mayoral candidate Chris Caruso is running for town clerk and former Town Clerk Alma Maya for city clerk on Moore’s ticket. Amina Brown, Dasha Spell and Eric Stewart-Alicea are running for Board of Education on Moore’s slate. Jacqueline Richardson, Ernest Brown and Wes Matthews are candidates for city sheriff.

Moore’s camp will need roughly 2,300 certified signatures of registered Democrats.

Ganim with City Councilman Alfredo Castillo, District Leader Wanda Geter Pataky, State Rep. Chris Rosario and endorsed candidate for City Council Evette Brantley.

Two weeks ago Ganim was endorsed for another four-year term by the 90-member Democratic Town Committee. Town Clerk Charles “Don” Clemons and City Clerk Lydia Martinez were endorsed for another term, as were Dennis Scinto, Steve Nelson and Mitch Robles for city sheriff slots.

The town committee also endorsed incumbent Sybil Allen, school parent Albert Benejan and political newcomer Bobbi Brown for Board of Education.

Ganim who will outspend Moore likely 3 to 1 is not taking this race lightly, nor should he. He’s been knocking on doors in 90-degree heat, with a trail of political operatives schmoozing voters for another four-year term.

Absentee ballots, processed from the Town Clerk’s Office, will weigh mightily in this cycle. They will become available August 20. Meanwhile political operatives for Ganim and Moore are fanning out absentee ballot applications to be ready for August 20. Moore will not win the absentee ballot count that is worked heavily by entrenched forces supporting Ganim. The question is how close can she keep it while running up substantial machine count totals in her favored neighborhoods.

Moore brings to the table a base of support she represents in the state legislature including Black Rock, West Side and North End, areas where Ganim is presumably weakest from the residual impact of the 2016 revaluation of city property that spiked taxes in those neighborhoods.

Ganim has not raised taxes the past three years. Meanwhile Moore’s operation is introducing her to areas of the city she is less known such as southern and eastern portions of Bridgeport. Moore’s strategy is not Ganim’s past but his current record as mayor, chiding him on traditional issues such as taxes, public safety, development and commitment to office after his failed run for governor last year.

Moore is also placing a premium on contrasting her reformer’s touch against Ganim’s fidelity to the political establishment.

Endorsed for City Council by district:

130, Matt McCarthy, Scott Burns

131, Denese Taylor-Moye, Jorge Cruz

132, Marcus Brown, Evette Brantley

133, Jeanette Herron, Michael DeFilippo

134, Michele Lyons, AmyMarie Vizzo Paniccia

135, Mary McBride Lee, Rosalina Roman-Christy

136, Alfredo Castillo, Maria Zambrano Viggiano

137, Aidee Nieves, Maria Valle

138, Nessah Smith, Karen Jackson

139, Ernie Newton, Eneida Martinez



  1. Marilyn Moore is unwise to attack Ganim’s current record because hers is even worse!
    Her “reformer’s touch ” has resulted in a mega-billion dollar debt that even her friend, the Governor, has criticized.
    As Bond Commission co-chair, Moore caters to the one-percenters (the wealthy) who escape state taxes thanks to the tax-free bonds her group produces. She’s there by intent. Her tactics do not support her strategy. Don’t be misled by her friend-of-the-downtrodden message.
    The General Assembly is slow, inept, deeply in debt and clinging to the failed status quo.

    1. Local Eyes, are you comparing a track record of a chief executive swept into office four years ago on a “no tax increase” platform coupled with “give me a second chance” plea?
      Ganim2 as leader of the Executive branch in a City with little or no evidence of oversight, official administrative or legislative opposition on year-round vacation, and no annual agenda with priorities either makes or lets things happen. Is there anyone else responsible during the past four years?

      In contrast, Senator Marilyn Moore is but one of our State Legislators. She was assigned duty and risen to lead State Bond activities. She is one of many whose activities culminate in the bonds are marketed and the actual beneficiaries ultimately.

      You seem to hold her solely responsible for a feature of some governmental bonds
      in that when marketed, they bear a rate lower than market because the income produced when holding the bond is not taxable at one or more levels. The incomes of the top 1%, otherwise taxed at highest marginal rates, often find this attractive. But they are not thanking Marilyn Moore or any other legislators for the existence of “tax free bonds”. Rather each time a bond is placed to the market, an interest rate is calculated that will be attractive to most of the parties including buyer, who wants to receive the highest return net of any taxation; the offering administration who wants the issue to completely sell out with out additional expense; and the taxpayer who wants to bear the lowest actual interest rate for monies borrowed (that he does not really know about or understand in any case.) It’s a case of “less interest to be paid is more to the taxpayer benefit”, all other things equal.
      What is your personal and specific objection to the Mayoral candidacy of Senator Marilyn Moore as a Trumbull voter at last report? TIME WILL TELL.

      1. I like Connecticut. Consequently, I disapprove of MM’s affiliation with its balance sheet. (FINRA members should understand what I mean).
        Nothing says long term financial ineptitude more than a bloated balance sheet! Unlike Uncle Sam, Connecticut does not have a sovereign currency. The Feds can manage their $22T debt better than we can tolerate our $80B debt. We’re burdened by the sands of time!
        MM is not solely responsible for our situation but she’s the only one running for Mayor of Bridgeport and that’s what I care about. All politics are local, right?

        1. Where are your words commenting on Ganim2’s budgets, accountability, operations of labor relations, etc. He has had no practical or effective oversight and precious few comments from OIB observers like yourself. Why let the incumbent skate and hold a challenger, not in an executive position, to a higher standard?

          It has been Ganim2 who has quietly born the heavy burdens of the secret labor relations operations for the City in the past decade, by going to Hartford, asking for relief of various types that has extended taxpayer responsibilities that ends up costing taxpayers more. It has been the majority in the City Council voting with Ganim to adopt this year’s bonding package, defending their behavior because Hartford said it is acceptable??? Hartford has said our City is qualified for MARB status also. Why doesn’t the Council act on that? Kicking the can down the road…..singing “It’s OK with Hartford.” …..and thinking that this refrain makes them OK with Bridgeport voters? Time will tell.

    2. I understand your frustration but you can’t put all that burden on MM. When she announced $13+ Million in funding for Bridgeport in Dec. 2018. No one much cared. I think the real reason no one cared is because the bulk of that funding requires the city to match it and Joe has not presented any matching funds that I’m aware about. $3.7Million Senator Moore announced was for the Congress Street bridge, a platform Joe ran on and , has not seen progress in 4 years outside of repeating what army corps of engineers said under finch, that we don’t need a drawbridge so costs can be significantly lower.

      I can sit here and doubt Marilyn Moore as well or sit hit and understand that we’ve hit a ceiling with Joe as Mayor. Joe’s campaign is running on “keep progress moving” . I’ve asked many Joe supporters to please just make a list of this progress we speak of. No one can make a list , lots of photo opps, press releases, and press conferences in 4 years that all added up to nothing.

      I will not bash Joe. I will accept him for what he is, a former mayor who cared and inspired people. He is a poor leader at this juncture and it’s simply time to move in a different direction. I am willing to offer Senator Moore a 1st chance at becoming mayor and changing the face of the city. I simply can not give Joe a “3rd chance” . Time is too valuable

        1. Think possibilities instead of predictions.
          Marilyn Moore can steal that bridge if Governor Lamont endorses her on the banks of that river while approving the bond money needed for its completion. She’d be using her civic connections to immediately override City Hall. That’s power!
          Under the right conditions, even debt diets are made to be broken.

  2. I went into the Registrar this morning to drop off my final batch of my petitions. Pat immediately handed them off to staff to verify. She did the same thing Friday.

    I was surprised because normally top of the ticket petitions are a higher priority. When I questioned Pat on it she informed me Marilyn Moore’s campaign had not submitted a single petition page.

    That is a poor strategy. Batches should be turned in periodically so that you can get an actual count of validated signatures and get a running total. The campaign can then get a sense of the percentage of signatures being disqualified and calculate a realistic buffer.

    What is being done in risky.

    1. Doesn’t sound correct to me. There’s been teams walking over new voter registration cards, logging petitions, etc all last week. I can’t imagine they haven’t been dropping off signed petitions.

      Good luck in your district with your running mate

      1. Maria is very astute to the petioning princess. Based on her observations, it’s a tough road to hoe to qualify. Speaking of ho’s, it is interesting that Moore has fully embraced Tony Barr.
        Strange bedfellows!

  3. so Ernie Newton was endorsed by the DTC for another term. That explains his presence at Little Joe’s photo op in front of the Sunshine Deli. Hey Moses, must be nice to have friends in high places.

    1. Derek
      Let me set the record straight 2 years ago i didn’t get the endorsement. I primaried to RUN. I won the primary and general election and WON. This year the 139th dist Endorsed Councilwoman Martinez and myself. I don’t know the point you are trying to say. Even before i got back on the council we had marches on Sunshine deli where the media covered the store. I was front and center and YES I do have FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACE GOD-The Father GOD- The SON AND GOD-The HOLY SPIRIT. I can’t get no HIGHER THAN THAT!

      1. Moses,
        God and 79Ȼ will buy coffee at Cumberland Farms. Obviously the marches weren’t effective. If the violence, drug dealing and unsanitary conditions persisted for so many years . I’m happy for your faith in a higher power but it doesn’t do anything for the people that lost loved ones to gang violence.
        The point is, you took the DTC endorsement this year. There had to have been some strings attached. As an experienced politician you know exactly what ‘quid pro quo’ means. In case you forgot it is a noun that is defined as “a favor or advantage granted or expected in return for something.”
        So what are you going to do for Little Joe and Mario the Dark Lord?

  4. Derek
    First of all you have no idea what you are talking about. First at the democratic convention i didn’t VOTE for either candidate because neither asked for my Vote. I asked all 9 member of my town committee for their Vote. All 9 voted for myself and Ms Martinez. secondly NO one in my family has ever WORKED for the city and yes i have asked for people in my community to be hired. Bridgeport is no different than any other urban area in this country. Gang Violence is happening all over america.

    1. Derek, the 139th district is one district in the City that very seldom have a primary and that district gets what it deserves with those elected officials. No pharmacy, no supermarket, no gas station, no businesses but liquor stores all around.

      1. RON
        That’s not true Eastend has always had primaries . I can’t wait until you eat your words about The pharmacy, Supermarket etc. Our developer has signed contracts with these companies. He preparing the land with cleaning it up where the cleaners use to be. Yes its been a long time coming. The developer should be braking ground shortly.

        1. Ernie, yes, there will be a few new businesses starting up in the East End, I guess better late than never but Ernie, how long have you been in elective office in some compacity, well why has it taken so long to get a pharmacy, Supermarket etc. ?

          1. He’s got you on that one, Moses. What have the people of the 139th been getting from you? So the nine DTC members from the 139th voted for you? That’s nice.

            We’re not talking about gang violence in other places in America. We’re talking about gang violence right here in Bridgeport. How nice of you to march on the Sunshine Deli during the day while the drug dealers were slumbering. Fat lot of good it did. The gangs were selling their poison until the city health department shut down the store. No problem for them-they’ll find another place to do business and purchase alcoholic beverages, no thanks to you.

        2. Blah blah blah, Ernie. The original Moses led his people across the Red Sea to Mount Sinai where he received the Ten Commandments from God.

          You led your people in circles. Did you receive any commandments from Mario?

        3. Hey Moses,

          Why did it take so long to get the supermarket and the pharmacy? The developer signed on out of a desire to help the community, not through any of your doing.

          1. Derek
            Listen you have no clue what you are talking about. It took a long time yes. For the first time we have a developer who grew up in the Eastend Mr. Anthony Steward he,s re-doing the library and doing the civic Block. If it had not been for Our NRZ MBA and community stake holders none of this would have been possible. Old building are coming down so new ones can be build.We had to fight to make sure Mr. Stewart was the developer as you know you can name on one hand how many blacks or hispanics get major contracts in this city. I wish you would do your homework first before shooting from the hip! Mr. Brown you are like many on this Blog Talking Loud ain’t saying Nothing James Brown would say!

          2. That’s just so much disingenuousness, Moses. I was not talking about the supermarket or the drug store or Ernest Stewart. I was referring to the Sunshine Deli and the crime that occurred there.

            Changing the subject doesn’t change the fact that you did nothing to effect the closing of that place. Changing the subject will not change that fact.

          3. So tell us, Ernie. What did you have to promise Ganim and Testa to secure the endorsement? Support for the casino?


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