Push For Votes In Final Week

Ellsworth park
Oh baby, don’t ya just love power of incumbency? This improvement project at Ellsworth Park in Black Rock is out for bid, with a projected completion date for spring 2014.

One week from Tuesday is Election Day. Campaign organizations are putting the final touches on identifying voters and persuading them to the polls November 5th. It’s a general election, but the turnout is expected to be so small it has the strategic feel of a primary. Find your friends and drag them out. Will the Connecticut Working Families Party win coalition control of the Board of Education? Can Republicans find electoral relevance after being shut out of school board and City Council seats for years? The turnout is expected to be tiny, perhaps in the 10 percent range based on recent elections, but the City Council’s 130th District will likely run well ahead of the rest of the city where Black Rock and West End voters will choose among incumbent Democrats Sue Brannelly and Steve Stafstrom and Republican challengers Rick Torres and Phil Blagys.

Torres and Blagys figure to perform well at Black Rock School, Brannelly and Stafstrom should run ahead at the Aquaculture voting precinct. How close can each team stay on visitor turf? What are you hearing? Do you predict any upsets?

Republican Rick Torres campaigned Monday at the P. T. Barnum Apartments a mighty Democratic vote. But Torres knows the territory having lived as a kid across the way at an adjacent housing project. Torres is also fluent in Spanish.
Republican Rick Torres campaigned Monday at the P. T. Barnum Apartments a mighty Democratic vote. But Torres knows the territory having lived as a kid across the way at an adjacent housing project. Torres is also fluent in Spanish.

Full field of candidates

Board of Education:

Democrats Andre Baker, Howard Gardner, David Hennessey; Republicans Joe Larcheveque, Stephen Best and John Weldon; Working Families Party, Sauda Baraka, Andre Baker and Eric Stewart-Alicea.

City Sheriff:

Democrats Dennis Scinto, Willie Murphy and Mitch Robles; Republicans David Goodman, Michael Moretti and Michael Garrett.

City Council:

130th District, Democrats Sue Brannelly and Steve Stafstrom; Republicans Rick Torres and Phil Blagys.

131st District, Democrats Jack Banta and Denese Taylor-Moye; Republicans David Goodman and Ethan Book; petitioning candidate Rafael Mojica.

132nd District, Democrats Bob Halstead and Trish Swain; Republicans Corey Gordon and Jeffrey Falberg.

133rd District, Democrats Tom McCarthy and Howard Austin; Republicans Jose Morales and Brian Banacowski.

134th District, Democrats Michelle Lyons and AmyMarie Vizzo-Paniccia; Republicans Yolanda Rodriguez and Ruben Coriano.

135th District, Democrats Mary McBride-Lee and Richard Salter; Republicans Kathy Torres and James Keyser; petitioning candidate Mary McBride-Lee.

136th District, Democrats Richard DeJesus and Alfred Castillo; Republicans Philip Flynn and Anthony Pizighelli.

137th District, Democrats Lydia Martinez and Milta Feliciano; Republicans Luis Colon and Ramona Marquez; petitioning candidate Karen Jackson.

138th District, Democrats Richard Paoletto and Mike Marella; Republicans Anthony D’Amato and Quentin Dreher.

139th District, Democrats James Holloway and Eneida Martinez-Walker; Republicans Cecil Young and Fred Williamson.



  1. MOM$ (Money, Operation, Message, $trategy) will decide this one. Brannelly is hurting the chance of Stafstrom winning. Stafstrom hasn’t been on the council long enough to be held accountable for much of the voter discontent in the 130th. especially in the Black Rock area–their backyard. It’s poltically and financially to the best interest of John Stafstrom (Steve’s uncle) to open the safe and pull out some ca$h to help the nephew get elected. The result could be a very close one, similar to what happened in the East Side. Absentee ballots are very important in the 130th City Council race especially if it’s a nail-biter. I got a door knock from someone from the Branelly/Stafstrom (now those of us on the West End section are important!) campaign. On this side of the district there is lots of dicontent especially with the property owners. Torres and Blagys need to get on their bike and peddle their behinds here. Work hard on convincing Democrats. There are lots of Hispanics who are familiar with Rick Torres (remind them you ran for mayor). I assume Rick speaks Spanish; if so, an advantage to convince voters who speak Spanish. The area near Cesar Batalla (behind and next to the West Side shooting range proposed location) is a little pocket of potential votes from property owners. After reading this, it would be wise for the Democrats to do the same and counter their opponents if they do get on their bikes and come over to the West End.

    There is a rumor Rick and Phil are afraid to ride their bike in the West End section for fear of having their bike stolen. I once had my bike stolen in Dowtown Bridgeport while a US Marine was watching the bike as I took a test in their office. It could happen! Especially when I consider the fact there is less of a police presence after the interior of the West Side precinct was completely gutted in preparation for the shooting range. It’s not like you guys are driving in a Ferrari. It’s worth the risk.

  2. Joel Gonzalez, come on now, you know all these candidates in the 130th district are running to get elected for Black Rock, they are scared to death to go where you said or to go to PT Barnum.

    1. Maybe the challengers would pay more attention to the BR section if elected. The only way to know for sure is to give them a try. We’ve tried out all the Democrats the district leadership have put up and gotten elected.

      Ron Mackey, you need to pay attention to the City Councilpersons in your district. You know one of them is only interested in representing Seaside Village-related issues. They’re both too lazy to go anywhere in the district other than their neighborhood. I’d like to see them on a bike like Rick’s. They’ll get lost if they travel one block from their home.

      1. Joel, you said “Maybe the challengers would pay more attention to the BR section if elected.” You made my point, PT Barnum will not be on their agenda if they get elected and neither will the Cesar Batalla section.

  3. Lennie, I’m glad to hear that, now let’s see the other do a quick drive-by. It would be nice if they did a debate at the Gary Crooks Memorial Center on 301 Bostwick Ave.

    1. Ron,
      Why don’t you and I plan a discussion of City governance at Gary Crooks Memorial Center on 301 Bostwick? We can listen maybe before staking out positions. In the meantime maybe we can encourage some people to become real representatives for advancement of all people. Information shared about the way the City governance structure works is a fair topic and one in which none of us is well served. Maybe if people understood why their vote and expectations of the elected are so precious, they would not get traded away for such little value. Do you like to hear a crowd yelling or would you like to see some wisdom appear from folks who have lived a long time, worked for change but know more needs to be done about change for all the people? Time for a call, Ron? Time will tell.

  4. Ron,
    Back from Haiti and a playground built for 120-150 students of a school in Marchand-Dessalines, the first capital of the country after revolution. The school is sponsored and supported by Pastor Manis François who has resided in Bridgeport for 20 years and sends a portion of his earnings to support the teachers in the 7 grades.

    You know I have been inviting you to have a cup of coffee and meet in person for some months now. You have ignored this invite so far.

    When I see your misdirected and challenging comments about Rick Torres and PT Barnum, maybe I need to challenge you in a similar fashion. We can do the New Colony Diner, Red Rooster, or Harborview perhaps, or are there problems with the coffee in these places? Or do the neighborhoods “scare you to death?” Maybe you realize how toxic my presence is to those in City Hall and you do not want to appear with me? How about getting real with an “older, white, bearded, four-eyed and sometimes bow-tied bozo (and any other things you want to add) from Black Rock?” 203-259-9642 daytime … don’t be scared, now! Time will tell.

          1. hope I can sell my house, I’m making plans to go back and get a replacement for the left knee, ouch!

        1. Ron,
          Sorry to hear about about medical problems that are limiting your activity. I have some current issues but they have not yet limited my mobility.
          So as persistent as I am, I have a suggestions for you: I’ll provide a slow walk from your door to my car and a safe ride to get coffee, wherever. We can talk, as I have suggested. My interest is in listening and talking, not walking. Give me a call, 203-259-9642. Time will tell.

    1. Remember donj … Stafstrom is a product of nepotism. He and his uncle are lawyers for Pullman & Comley, the chief bond counsel for the City of Bridgeport. Neither should be involved in the politics of this city while earning big money at your expense.

  5. *** No incumbents should be voted for if being challeged by “change!” Stop voting for the same people who have helped or will continue to help raise city taxes, are soft on crime, do not support the city school system or libraries, are pro-admin and rubber stampers, don’t have a clue! *** “Stop” spitting in the wind and “start” pulling on superman’s cape, it’s time! ***


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