The Sting Of Primary Season, Studying Musto-Moore Race

So, I’m the biggest dope on the planet. I decided Sunday morning to clean and adjust gutter screens on the house. I poise the ladder. I climb the ladder. I reach for the screen. “Oh, shit, hornets! Run, Forrest, run!”

One pissed-off hornet nailed me on the neck. Before you can run from a ladder you must jump. It was sort of a slapstick festival watching myself fly off the ladder. See what happens when you get down in the gutter?

Speaking of gutters, just one week away from Tsunami Tuesday when Bridgeport seeks to break the Guinness World Record for primaries in one day. Last week OIB handicapped the state house race between incumbent Bob Keeley and Auden Grogins. The Hartford Courant ran a story about that race on Sunday.

Today we look at the Democratic primary for state senate between endorsed candidate Anthony Musto and Marilyn Moore. The winner faces Republican State Senator Rob Russo in November. The district includes Trumbull and parts of Monroe and Bridgeport, perhaps the most eclectic legislative region in the state.

It appeared Musto would have a cakewalk into the nomination for a November showdown with Russo, but Moore hasn’t gone away. Musto, the elected treasurer in Trumbull, is a nice-guy attorney. He has the support of most party regulars including Democratic Town Chair Mario Testa and State Chair Nancy DiNardo of Trumbull.

Moore, of Bridgeport, is a former legislative staffer to State Sen. Ed Gomes. As a result of her working experience and relationships built in Hartford she has developed a core group of progressives and activists helping to build a city organization.

The Bridgeport piece of the district runs from the Upper East Side, across the heart of the North End, along the West Side and takes in Black Rock and a portion of the West End, including P.T Barnum Apartments.

The district includes a chunk of the legislative area occupied by Keeley, and therein, it appears, provides part of her support. Keeley friend City Councilman Bob “The Troll” Walsh is actively working for both Keeley and Moore. Grogins and Moore are running on the same line.

Gomes is one of Walsh’s best friends so The Troll’s relationship with the state senator is a major factor in his efforts for Moore.

State Rep. Jack Hennessy, a disciple of State Rep. Chris Caruso, does not have a primary, but he represents the North End area that Moore must carry if she’s going to be competitive. Keeley and Walsh both supported Caruso for mayor last year so we’ll see what Hennessy can deliver for Moore in the North End. A small piece of Caruso’s legislative constituency also falls within that state senate area.

The question is, where else can Moore, a health care activist, develop strength? Moore will need more, even though the Bridgeport piece of the district has thousands more Dems than Trumbull. Simply framing yourself as the Bridgeport candidate won’t be enough.

Unless there’s a total breakdown in party apparatus and voter identification, Musto should do well in Trumbull and Monroe, and he’s the kind of candidate that appeals to voters in the city’s North End, a nice Italian boy, even though voters don’t vote ethnically like they once did.

Advantage Musto, but with primary turnout trending so low, and Moore working hard this could be closer than expected.

Moore Pasta, Please

Check out this double invitation from Marilyn Moore and Chris Caruso:

Please join

Marilyn Moore
Democratic Candidate for State Senate
State Representative
Chris Caruso

For a Free Community Dinner

Sunday, August 10th
6:00 p.m.
Sportivo Circlo Italian Club
(Across from St. Mary’s Shrine)
2500 Park Ave
Bridgeport, CT

Please bring your family and friends to discuss the issues that matter to you.
This dinner is free and open to the public. To RSVP or for more information please call 203-373-1803



  1. I have NO IDEA who’s going to win the upcoming primary contests. I cannot predict the future. However, I am rooting for Curbside Sylvester and Joel because they are OIB Bloggers and consequently have a stranglehold on the truth (nod).

  2. “Rosemay Huan, working on city time, is heading up Auden’s AB operation over at Twin Towers. Keeley has been picking off her applications and turning them into his votes.”

    TK-Apparently Caruso’s gift for crafting copious amounts of hypocritical bullshit has really rubbed off on you. And on whose time is Keeley campaigning, sleating signs and AB’s?

    The D.S.S.D.’s…i.e. the downtown taxpayers’ dime.

    Or am I just really off base here…buddy?

  3. Ok, not to take this off topic, but how about the budget woes of this wonderful City? Nice write up in the Post. Where are all the comments from the Pols on this?

    Who builds in a $1.5M shortfall in the hopes that by hiring some expensive axmen attorneys, the underpaid and under-appreciated City employee will take a week off without pay to cover the gap?

    It’s time people stopped living in fantasy worlds and realized that the City employees are real people, and they have bills to pay and mouths to feed, just like the clueless politicos.

    If this is what it takes, then I suggest that ALL employees take the same week off. Shut the whole circus down for a week. The surprise will be this.

    For those honest hardworking emplyees, their efforts will finally be realized, and maybe people would start to appreciate them more.

    Now, for the politically appointed, lazy, no showers, your efforts (or lack thereof) will also finally be realized. People will realize that you don’t do a damn thing but suck off the City while you bang your drum proclaiming how important and smart you are.

    Maybe, just maybe then, we can see where all the waste is, and begin to make cuts where they should be, or at least remove the garbage and put people in those postitions that want to work, and can make a difference.

    There are too many people on the dole here folks. Time to expose and remove them.

    But there’s no fun in that, is there, so let’s just keep trucking along, pointing fingers.

  4. Good points, Here We Go, but bloggers here have pointed out over and over that the mayor’s budget is based on numerous assumptions, including union concessions, the very assumptions he promised to avoid. Why can’t labor relations handle labor negotiations?

  5. Blabber Mouth

    It’s okay you didn’t rub me the Wong way.

    Speaking of “crafting copious amounts of bullshit”, how did that $600 thing that Bill promised ever work out?

    Auden and Bill are like New Jersey. Perfect Together!

    Question on employee concession on furloughs. If a city employee agrees to take a week off on furlough, are they eligible for unemployment compensation for that week? I wouldn’t think so, but hey you never know!

  6. Summer Wind – Being on the receiving end of Labor “Relations” I can assure you that their method of negotiating is simply “No.” If they say “Yes”, they turn around and say that they never said “Yes” and that they really meant to say “No.”

    How the Administration could AssUMe that Labor would make concessions is foolish. Like it or not, Labor has been making concessions for a long time. The HIRING practices need to be examined in order to understand where the abuses and waste come from. The run-of-the-mill employee gets penalized because of those who abuse the system and its benefits. By and large, the City has many hardworking, honest employees who want to make things better. It is the rest that cause problems, and unfortunately, they receive the same protection that a good employee gets under a Union contract. So, how do you fix it?

    If you refuse to clean up your hiring practices, you end up penalizing the masses of good employees because of the handful of hairballs that ruin it for everyone. The City hires employees, the Unions get stuck with them, for better or worse. I, for one, will not take a week off without pay, because I earn that pay. There certainly are enough employees who have taken weeks/months/years off, WITH pay. Go ask them.

  7. donj,
    Mazel Tov. I love it when a Bridgeport student says “… I just completed school.”

    Nice Goin’!!!

    Come on everybody. Let donj know how proud you are of his accomplishment.

  8. Summer Wind

    The Labor Relations dept. can’t handle the labor relations because…pregnant pause…they are in labor. That group needs a C-Section.

  9. I really missed The Bridgeport Kid this weekend. Word on the Avenue was that he was over at The Vibes spewing some copulative verbs.

    He’s working on the autobiography of his sex life. The galleys are being read as you read.

    Randy Press is the publisher and the reported title is:

    “Eats, Shoots and Leaves!!”

  10. How dare Finch ask the employees “the little people” who work hard and get paid next to nothing to take furloughs! In the last 6 months he has created numerous “fake” jobs for his political cronies. They come in the city as new employees making double than what most of us that have been here for years and years make! This is sickening. We live check to check and we have to sacrifice to make up for the cost of paying his friends!!!!! Money is being wasted on things not needed just wanted. There needs to be a thorough AUDIT of the CITY!! Not just the BOE! Too much wheeling and dealing going on behind the scenes! By the way, did everyone know that the Mayor has appointed a new Treasurer? Joe Jambriska is the Treasurer now. This happened before Carroll became PF Director. Don’t know why this has been kept on the hush? At least the tax collector can do her job full time now instead of doing that and the treasurers!

  11. I can’t decide where to lunch today. Maybe I will contact the Stamford caterer that catered the Mayor’s Legal Defense Fund party last week. I heard they did an outstanding job. Cracked Lobsters, Raw Bar, Corn on the Cob etc..

    Once again we go outside the city for business. Meanwhile the Bridgeport small business person is getting the raw end of the deal, shucked again and corn holed in one fell swoop. C’mon guys smarten up will ya!

  12. Here we go … bravo for your post, I couldn’t agree more. I didn’t know whether to laugh, cry or scream when I read today’s article in the Post regarding union concessions. The nerve of this administration is beyond belief.
    Is it too much to ask that the city, before asking for concessions, takes a good long look at its hiring practices? I believe the term “overstocking the pond” has been used to describe them. I am not making this up … they (Sherwood & Co.) actually used that term to help explain why in these difficult economic times they would hire to limits well beyond required minimum staffing levels in order to avoid paying overtime. Newsflash … IT’S CHEAPER TO PAY OVERTIME … of course city hall should, and probably does, know this. The bulk of the costs associated with hiring new employees is tied into benefits and pension obligations and by paying overtime to your current employees you avoid taking on unnecessary long-term exposure in these areas. Add to this the less than rigorous screening process for new employees and the city is setting itself up for long-term disaster. As far as benefits are concerned … why doesn’t the city offer their employees some sort of financial incentive to use their spouse’s insurance rather than the city of Bridgeport insurance? Health care costs are increasing at an alarming rate and it seems this just might makes sense.
    Paying overtime rather than “overstocking the pond” and financial incentives to opt out of the city of Bridgeport insurance … how about it … just for starters … these are just two of many cost-saving measures that should be looked at before asking already underpaid employees to give anything back.

  13. For what it’s worth … the above-mentioned ideas are working in countless towns and cities as well as the private sector. Could it be they are all wrong and Bridgeport actually knows something they don’t? Somehow I doubt it.

  14. The Grin Ripper is here to wreak havoc with the Grin Reaper. donj, I’m really impressed they taught you how to split your vote. With the Grogins record on Education and the latest dismal test scores I thought you would be outraged at the state of education in our city. Congratulations on completing Summer School. Drop-In-Don’t-Drop-Out. Good luck with your first vote. Two out of Three ain’t bad with the learning curve.

    “Experience is a tough teacher. First it gives you the test. Then it teaches you the lesson.” Grogins flunked her tests and needs to be kept back a grade. Keeley, this morning, was with the Governor on the approval of the bonding package for firehouse. Experience Counts!!! Grogins’ “Change” message will be nothing but “Chump Change” for Bridgeport. She will soon be a Grim Weeper.
    I hope Summer Wind isn’t downwind on that Ripper.

  15. Que Pasta! or “Political Pastabilities!”

    This sounds like an offer you can’t refuse from the Pasta Nostra!! Will Musto and Silva be sleeping with the fishes or will they be turning loaves into votes? Grogins and Keeley won’t be there loafing around. Keeley is scraping for every crumb on the table and Grogins has come down with a yeast infection after her altercation with State Rep. Brendan Sharkey on Saturday. ” Oh that Shark’s bite!” I guess she was barking up the wrong tree on Rowsley Street.

  16. I have to agree quite a bit with “Here we Go”‘s comments on the city’s practice of always trying to balance the budget so to speak, on the lower paid city worker’s back! A city job freeze is put into effect however the Mayor continues to create new jobs that pay twice the salaries, than the jobs pay which are frozen? And again, people who helped in his campaign are the ones getting the jobs & for the most part, they have no real experience working in that particular field! And wait ’til after the Nov. elections to see who else will be getting a political job so to speak. Don’t get me wrong here ’cause everyone needs a job, especially with today’s cost of living prices. But when you’re penalizing one group over another, then claim it’s for the sake of the budget, there’s something wrong! Example, Bpt. Education Admin. finally gives its schoolteachers a modest raise in their last contract after years of 0% to 2.5% over #3 yrs. lets say. The admin. backed by the B.O.E gives itself a 10% raise in their contract yet claims, if the teachers give back a week to #2 weeks vacation that they would agree to a give back? Oh, the modest raise the teachers got was 3% to 3.5% for being teachers, counselors, mom & pops, friends, moral advisors, etc.; one tough job. Yet the ones that make the over-all decisions and have the personal secretaries & take-home cars and make over $140,000 a year plus benefits get 10% raises! There’s something wrong with this concept yet the elected B.O.E. members for the most part seem to always vote yes in favor.

  17. Grin – What bonding package do you speak of? Am I to assume that it is for the Black Rock Firestation? The one that they just dumped a ton of money into? What is so wrong with that place that it needs more costly repairs?

  18. Keeley will win Black rock school, He will win Central and he will win Longfellow to. So keeley will win 100% of the 3 precincts . Moore will win Bpt she wil run up the numbers in the city

  19. HereWeGo,
    Some good posts today with you, park city fan and Mojo.
    I think the city bonded and spent $550k on sinking repairs for 7-11 firehouse. Not sure if it needs more repairs and new roof or money is to be used by BFD for other infrastructure work. Re-dedication of 7-11 is scheduled for 2:00 p.m. tomorrow. I hope we learned a valuable lesson on how not to close a firehouse.

  20. Ass woman grogins rubs me the wrong way. She is a spoiled princess who doesn’t give a damn about anyone. She is a complete hypocrite and will bring anything back here at all. I am for Musto too. Moore can’t beat Russo. I voted for him first but I am really pissed about his vote on insurance for small businesses. I own one and I can’t afford insurance for my 3 employees and myself. Also he voted against subprime mortgage relief. Come on we just bailed out big banks and subsized oil companies. I think it’s BS when he says he cares about the little guy. Plus someone said his treasure is reputable. I have enough with that in the city. Moore’s a nice enough person but it will take more than lamonties packaging to make qualifed. Plus Musto will beat Russo.

  21. HereWeGo and Tommy Kelly-Your questions and comments seem like a real hoser eh? Look for those hose monsters Finch and Rooney to try usurp Keeley in his Chutes and Ladders game to finish off Black Rock repairs.
    Grogins is going to put some spots on poor Harold to make him look like a dalmation. She wants to slide down the pole but is only sliding down in the polls.

  22. We’re seeing a lot of new user names recently on OIB. I think the attack dogs may be taking over the site aka crackberry. Russo voted for subprime mortgage relief, not against it. At least tell the truth if you’re going to go after someone.

  23. “…and Grogins has come down with a yeast infection after her altercation with State Rep. Brendan Sharkey on Saturday. ” Oh that Shark’s bite!” I guess she was barking up the wrong tree on Rowsley Street.”

    Hey Warren – Please elaborate. I’m out of town and not up on the latest Keeley/Grogins developments. This sounds like it could be interesting.

  24. Crackberry, Big City is right about Russo and the sub-prime relief. However, he did vote against minimum wage, health care, and he was for taking away $1 million buck from Bridgeport and about $44 million state wide. Crackberry you are right about not caring for the little guy. You were also right when you said ass woman Grogins. I am for Musto too. I don’t think Marilyn has what it takes, plus she won’t have a mind of her own, she’ll be taking all her cues from Gomes.

  25. Plus, I think it was Yahooy who said. “Russo, Ward L. Thrasher. Explain.”

    I want to know why you’d hire a treasurer who got his law license suspended for two years for malpractice, breach of fiduciary duty and scamming off the estate he was supposed to be taking care of. What gives?

  26. From the figures I’ve seen, it looks like Grogins will win at Black Rock School and Longfellow. It will be tight, by as little as 100 votes or so, but she will win in Black Rock.

    It’s time to prune the deadwood, people. Keeley has been doing nothing, and he’s been doing it for a long time. Too long. We need fresh talent representing us in the state legislature, people with practical ideas and the motivation to carry them out. A property tax cap has worked wonders in 30 other states; there’s no reason it cannot work here.

  27. I missed Up Yours Bridgeport this past weekend. Word on the Avenue is that he was up in New London, selling musical instruments to the locals a la Professor Henry Hill in “The Music Man.” Up Yours was going to teach them how to play atonally, which would excuse any lack of talent. He was going to call the ensemble “Harvey Milquetoast and his All-Girl Band.” (Don’t forget the trained seals, Joe!)

  28. I’ve got access to a few things. It also doesn’t require a degree in advanced rocket science to figure out that Keeley is on the way to the glue factory. The guy’s been around too long, donj. He’s lazy and hypocritical and corrupt and hasn’t made good on any promises he’s made to the people that voted for him. It ain’t no beauty contest. Vote for the REAL candidate for change, not the tired dray horse.

  29. Hey Kid!
    I hear there is Trouble in River City!

    The Bridgeport Kid is right in his assumptions. The problem is the figures that he is tracking are based on Grogins being on the top line. It’s a false assumption.

    Another flaw in the tax cap assumption is that 30 other states have implemented this strategy. Problem is Connecticut is one of only two states that doesn’t have a County form of goverment. If we had a County form of government where everyone shares the pain and gain this strategy could work.

  30. It is more than obvious that Up Yours Bridgeport, whose only real support of Bob Keeley was to cast a few puerile and sophomoric aspersions on my character, has run out of enthusiasm for ol’ Bob “What cellphone ban?” Keeley.

  31. Connecticut did have a county form of government at one time. It was also the first system to be brought down by corruption in this state. It wasn’t so long ago that the elected office of county sheriff was eliminated by referendum because the system was rife with cronyism and political patronage.

    As the state’s government now exists, a tax cap wouldn’t work. It would have to be retooled to accommodate Connecticut’s form of government. It would still work wonders, however. If you don’t think so, perhaps you could enlighten us with a practical alternative or two.

  32. Kid, a tax cap will not work in Connecticut because CT is set up to run towns on property taxes. Towns don’t get a portion of any of the sales taxes from the state. Towns don’t have local sales tax or income tax. Also as you correctly stated no regional form of government. That is the fault of small towns in this state that don’t want to lose any supposed control they have even if it saves them money and big Cities who think they have the lock on hard times. Grogins is not a change, she is a puppet for Finch and self-serving, not politically astute and she would run from representing Bridgeport like the plague at any sign of a judgeship. Finch, his henchmen and Stafstrom are not a change. Talk about a taker, she was so far up Finch’s ass to get his help and now she is conveniently trying to deny the association. Wonder what Finch’s wife thinks of her old pal now? While she may have the right to represent anyone she wants and all murders have a constitutional right to a defense she is stupid if she thinks voters are not going to care. People don’t want representation from a person who represents murders to improve their name recognition. If you aren’t politically on the ball they will make mincemeat out of her in Hartford. She will not be able to do anything to help Bridgeport, because they don’t think very much of her as a candidate. If she were worth anything she would have gotten something from the state after begging for almost 10 years.

  33. I don’t want people representing me who have their strings pulled by other Bridgeport politicans. Moore is going to be a Gomes mouthpiece. Musto will serve the City because he is smart and independant from any of the City’s infighting. He doesn’t have to worry about Stafstrom verses Mario on any vote he makes, he only has to answer to the voters. Moore will be just another puppet dancing to someone else’s tune.

  34. donj

    Moore or less I will probably be voting for Musto. No matter what the outcome is I think this is just the beginning of Moore’s political career and not less.

  35. Donj; What is a machine-endorsed candidate? If Moore sought and received the party endorsement she would be the machine-endorsed candidate. Would that make her any less qualified to run for the senate?
    The reason people seek the party endorsement is to get on the top line. Studies show that voters tend to look at the top line more than the other lines of candidates. They also show that people tend to vote for the top line candidates because they are on the top line.

  36. Moore is going to be a Gomes mouthpiece.

    Or maybe it’ll be the other way around.

    Moore or less I will probably be voting for Musto. No matter what the outcome is I think this is just the beginning of Moore’s political career and not less.

    Since the main case for Musto’s candidacy is that he got smooshed previously by the GOP in a state rep run, perhaps Marilyn’s next stop will be the US Congress.

  37. I like Moore and I really can’t think of a negative thing about her. It would seem, however, Musto or Machine supporters are upset by her candidacy because they believe she is cutting in line. I think if there is anything we have learned over the years is that the succession of people who have paid their dues (Ganim, Fabrizi…etc) have not suited us well.

  38. As a long-time Dem. I can’t see myself voting for Moore knowing that she’ll be learning the ropes so to speak from, “I was a Union Rep.” Senator Gomes! That’s why I would “vote for Russo”. And no thank you to the fair-haired, silver spoon Himes as well. I’d rather stay with top seniority Congressman Shays too! I don’t vote strictly for party line candidates, but who I think can do the better job at the time. Just like I didn’t vote for Finch either!


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