Stallworth Casts A Campaign Line. Any Bites? Or Sorry, Charlie?

Moore, Ganim
From 2016, Marilyn Moore with Joe Ganim at lectern.

State Rep. Charlie Stallworth’s in the race for mayor. Is he in for the long haul? If so, that’ll require a full-fledged campaign operation backed by a mighty warchest. Or is he simply in it to leverage a pound of flesh from Mayor Joe Ganim or Ganim’s chief foe State Senator Marilyn Moore?

Cast a line Charlie and see what comes back? Too soon to say who’ll bite. Depends on the schematics of the race.

If Stallworth’s determined to run a Democratic primary he’ll need to secure a few thousand signatures from Democratic electors to qualify for the ballot, a process that would begin the day after the Democratic Town Committee endorsement in July. Moore, presuming she also wages a primary, must do the same. Ganim will have the endorsement, barring a seismic political shift.

The first test of strength for opponents comes early April when campaign finance reports are filed with the Town Clerk’s Office for the first quarter fundraising period. In these kinds of races it’s not what Ganim raises–he’ll have plenty of loot–it’s what opponents spend.

Moore, who entered the race in January, has already hosted several fundraisers. Stallworth’s strategically flawed timed announcement means he’ll need to lard up a campaign warchest quickly or show few fundraising dollars coming out of the first quarter report. Why does it matter? Strength builds strength. People on the fence are more willing to give if they see fundraising momentum. Why should I pony up if the candidate’s campaign dies the gooey death?

Stallworth’s an inside-out candidate. He positions himself establishment when it suits him. He positions himself an outsider when it suits him.

Charlie Stallworth
Ganim started his comeback in the church of Charlie Stallworth at podium for Ganim 2015 fundraiser. Sue Katz photo.

When Stallworth, a city minister, won a special election for State House in 2011 he was backed by then-Mayor Bill Finch’s political operation. Stallworth and Finch were buds for a while then they had a falling-out. Four years ago Stallworth was all in for Ganim against Finch. On January 1, 2015, Ganim issued his first public apology in Stallworth’s church following his 2003 conviction on public corruption charges.

Stallworth became one of the faces of Ganim’s campaign. Ganim won and he rewarded Stallworth with a $100K job. Stallworth also served as tri-chair of Ganim’s transition team. Everything was just ducky. Then the feathers started to fly.

Within a year or so the Ganim-Stallworth relationship soured to the point Stallworth resigned his city job about two years ago.

Stallworth’s relationship with Moore is not not exactly cuddly either. Moore is suspicious of Charlie’s multiple circuitous political angles.

Case in point, Stallworth’s befuddling short-term run for lieutenant governor last summer. His candidacy went splat within one day.

So how can Stallworth influence the race? Depends on the type of race he runs, if he has any staying power. Stallworth and Moore share a base of voter support in the African-American-rich Wilbur Cross precinct where Ganim ran up a huge vote against Finch in 2015. In that race Moore supported Mary-Jane Foster for mayor, as did the city’s other state senator at the time, Ed Gomes. Foster performed poorly at Wilbur Cross which proves that personal popularity is rarely transferable. Moore enjoys a strong following in that precinct.

Moore has positioned herself as the outsider and presumably receives the lion’s share of the anti-Ganim vote particularly large in pockets of her senate district such as Black Rock, achy from the 2016 revaluation of city property.

Does Stallworth split up the anti-vote? Again, depends on the race he runs.

On the surface Stallworth arguably poaches votes from Ganim given his profile in the areas of the city Moore is least known as well as his church following.

But Moore and Stallworth are black, won’t they split the black vote? No. It’s a complete fallacy that black voters prioritize votes based on race. For some race is a factor, but it’s not the only thing. Who’s best equipped for the job? Do they care about the things I care about? Are they connecting with me? That matters first.

So this is all a work in progress.

Is there room for anyone else in this race?

Paging retired Superior Court Judge Carmen Lopez. It’s getting late. Now if she entered the race it would be some election cycle.



      1. I heard the Governor, a white millionaire with multiple bathroom but it’s ok because he’s a “D”emocat, didn’t want to increase the gas tax for the transportation fund, but instead use tolls as a means of taxation for it, and only tax tucks. Now it’s to all vehicles that will raise 800 million annual with an initial cost around 400 million. Now I hear Ned wants to have it as a private/public partnership where the private sector will pick up the initial cost.

        So let me get straight. In 6 mount the tolls would pay for itself and all the money will go to the transportation fund. But now Ned wants to let a private partnership come in and make a profit by taxing the population on something the taxpayer build, the highways. We are now privatizing taxation for a profit. This is worst then the private health insurance where you privatize the profits and social the cost, the poor and elderly (Medicaid and Medicare) Welcome to the jungle where there are only lions and cheetahs. 🙂

        1. P.S Bob (AKA Walter) there was nothing more frustrating, disappointing, and amazed then you winning the “R”epublican nomination. You where the worst candidate out the bunch of “R’s” and the least likely to win. This election was a given for the “R’s” The “D’s” was so badly bruised there own incumbent governor had to dropped out.

          Population of the “D’s”.”‘R’s” “I’s””U’s” rise up because you are getting fucked on this by you government and it’s official R’s, and D’s. Talk about the fix was in. Good Job R’s for throwing this elections and letting the D’s be the bad guy while you both fuck the taxpayers. . SMBH 🙂

          1. Sorry Bob, AKA Walter 🙂 You weren’t the worst candidate. It was a tie between you and Steve Obsitnik, and I’ll give you the edge on him. But lets face it people Mark would have handedly beaten Ned, considering with the current state of affairs where the incumbent Democrat governor have to drop out, labeled as the worst governor in the country. But this toll debate would have ended with an R as governor. (maybe not though :), not really an R thing. So this race was rigged, and the debate for tolls are here. They, R’s and D’s in government wants that money. Taxing your residents to drive to work, go shopping, visit friends and family, just to go out you home and run errands. That’s a shot, especially to lower income people, making them prisoner in there own city.

            What happened to the 10 million dollar study, has that even been completed?

            Good Job D’s. This is wrong for the average person, especially the lower income, living in the larger cities, residents who are mostly D’s. If you D’s representing the port don’t speak against it you really don’t care about the its residence or the city. And to add a bill to help them is just another way of not lifting them up but actuality keeping them down and not putting them in the level where they would not need the break like those others who have the money to pay the tax. Key word here is money.

            With the US economy that is somewhat on and up ward motion yet CT adds only 2000 jobs in the private sector. My guess the government is not taking in as much as they like and are looking to recuperate the lost revenue. Here a though grow the economy and get your money that way. Like a casino in the Port. Let people enjoy given their money while contributing to the government needs instead of just taken it as they drive to work. And that is the game people.

            Ernie and others I hope you enjoy yourself in DC, and I hope you bring back some good ideas to help the port and it residents on your trip.

            For the D’s, paging NAACP and Latinos regarding your people being able move around “your state” I’ll depart with a quote for MLK

            “He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.”

            P.S. JML I do hope you win the seat on the board just to see what you will do for the students, and the 200 plus budget. # firstchancepoeple.

            P.S. you were wrong on Kayo to stay on as commissioner of the board of ethics. Attacking the Chief, AJ well that’s part of the game, wrong, but part of the game.

            Times up Chiefs. #ESLCLASSOVER. 🙂


  1. Lennie….Great analysis. The question remains;Why is Stallworth running for mayor?. You gave a cogent analysis but it remains a mystery. There is ZERO chance that Stallworth will come out of all this and become the Mayor of BPT. It’s at a point where NOBODY trusts Stallworth. IMHO,he is just running to keep his name in the mix and “trying” to stay relevant. I truly think that is his motive. BTW,Lennie,I noticed you had a shout out to Carmen Lopez about possible entering the fray. Do you know something we don’t know.

    1. Frank, Carmen Lopez NEVER said anything about running for mayor, she doesn’t play games like that, it was others who would put her name out there hoping that she would run.

      1. Ron, Judge Lopez has never posted on OIB. She was quoted in the CT Post stating she had not ruled it out.

        Have you had a single conversation with her running for Mayor? I have had quite a few.

        1. Maria, that’s right, with my conversations with her neither one of us mention anything about the election, now we talk about certain issues but the election. I won’t bring it up with her out of respect but if she makes a decision to run then I will talk with her.

  2. Don’t write Rev. Stallworth off yet… He isn’t running to waste time. He’s shown himself to be a pragmatic man during his tenure on the Bridgeport political scene. And he’s pulled a few rabbits out of his political magicians hat. His candidacy will have a very significant impact on this mayor’s race — and with the other two announced candidates (real candidates with real support) not being on solid-platform ground, Rev. Stallworth could whip-up an upset with the right approach and right platform… Bridgeporters aren’t happy with their lot, and a winning percentage could be lured to a wild-card candidate, such as the Rev. Stallworth, if the other two (real) candidates don’t convince Bridgeporters that they can do more than bs (JG) and ride on political issues (MM).

    Neither of the other two (real) candidates has what Bridgeport needs most — the sine qua non for making our city viable and livable again — a plausible plan for drastic, rapid tax-base growth such that our mil rate is cut in half and our city coffers are adequate for our needs… This would require a grand list of at least $20 Billion — which is a bit more than our current $6 BILLION…

    What Bridgeport needs in order to become viable and livable again is about $14 BILLION in tax-base GROWTH, in a (relative) hurry. This statement derives from our obvious socioeconomic distress/insane residential taxes (mil rate = 55)… To compare Bridgeport’s situation with a couple of nearby, Fairfield County cities: Stamford grand list = $20 BILLLION, vast majority of taxable property from commercial sector (mil rate = approx. 25, population = 4/5 Bridgeport); Fairfield grand list (mostly commercial) = $11 Billion, mil rate = approx. 27 (population = 1/2 Bridgeport); Bridgeport grand list = $ 6 BILLION… ]. Nuff said!

    Let a candidate with a real plan enter the Bridgeport picture! — Probably not CS (will he surprise us?!. Definitely not JG (he’s had 20 years to come up with plan and has produced zilch…) And definitely not MM — she hasn’t even hinted at an administration, economic/jobs-growth plan… (She’s seems to be fine with the “regional”, Bridgeport-as-regional-dormitory/beggar-city plan… And she’s tight with that “regional” crew, e.g., Ned and the Gold Coasters currently running things…)

    Got a plan, Rev.?! Got a plan, got votes!

  3. Ron; Why not? What are the determining factors this year? Is it as simple as “the biggest campaign war-chest wins?” If that’s the case, then the race is already over…

  4. Off topic but we are talking about “Reverends.” Back in December 2018,OIB was visited by the Rev. Herron Gaston with remarks by him after the murder of 12 year old Clinton Howell. I came upon this article about Rev. Gaston and it shows him servicing the community. The article seems to have been first printed in The New Haven Register and I found it after it was posted on the FB page of “City of Bridgeport-Government.” I just decided to share it Thank you.

  5. I believe that Rev. Stallworth has a chance. Do not sleep on his potential. I think he is a man of integrity. I trust him. I hope that you all give him a chance. Let us see what he says and what he can do. Do not write him off just yet. I would love to be the campaign manager for Maria should she get enough courage to run….

    1. Lennie….can you vouch for this person called Stephanie Thompson. This latest posting from Stephanie is highly dubious. If fake people are allowed to post here on OIB, then this takes away the integrity of OIB.

  6. Option compression. Too little choice. The “skinny” ballot.
    Rev. Stallworth, Marilyn Moore and Mayor Ganim have too much in common to sell tickets at this horse race. Imagine three people saying the same thing.
    What if politics can’t fix what’s broken?

    1. There’s a big difference, first, Stallworth was loyal to Ganim by giving him a platform to run for mayor after serving time in federal prison. Ganim hired Stallworth after becoming mayor but then Ganim showed that he was not loyal to Stallworth by firing Stallworth. Stallworth made a bad decision by running for Lieutenant Governor on Guy Smith’s run for Governor but also Ganim also ran for Governor and Stallworth and Ganim both got destroy by the voters in the Democratic primary. Marilyn Moore stayed focus on doing her duties for those voters in her district as their State Senator. This is not a hard decision, Senator Moore does her job for the voters and doesn’t play ego games like Stallworth and Ganim.


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