Watch: Ho-Hum Mayoral Forum

Given the nature of the format, five candidates with no rebuttal time, Wednesday night’s mayoral forum–featuring Democrats Joe Ganim and Marilyn Moore and Republicans John Rodriguez, Dishon Francis and Ethan Book–was a ho-hum affair with no crackling exchanges on the stage of the Klein Memorial Auditorium attended by more than 300 people. Check out video above courtesy of Bridgeport Generation Now, one of the event sponsors.

The real fireworks occurred a few hours earlier, a few doors away from the Klein, when a raging fire enveloped a multiple story house at Iranistan and Fairfield Avenue, requiring a circuitous route to the debate with streets closed down for public safety. Doing It Local has that report here.



  1. Not happy about the softball questions so here’s my recap.

    Someone please remind Joe that he is the incumbent, all his answers sounded canned and was coming from a perspective of “when I mayor, i would do”. I’m like dude, you are the mayor, you could have been doing xyz, smh. So by 8pm, you can see him visually flustered and got animated and almost yelled that finally fired an officer. That said, he did nothing to gain or lose support.

    Marilyn did well, came of genuine, and gave new life to here base by finally giving some snipperts of here knowledge and understanding of Bridgeport. You can here she has ideas and direction for Bridgeport and she will rely heavy on hiring qualified people and give transparency a real shot. I felt there were times i wanted to hear more and she would stop, lol. The only candidate that didn’t go over time. Not sure she swayed any new voters either, The questions did her no favors. She did have they 2nd best line of the night when she said, “My bio is online !”, after Ethan went off tangent on a quesiton to read off his credentials.

    The line of the Night : Ethan Book, “I heard the only way a Republican would win in Bridgeport is with a Scandal, who needs a scandal when we have Joe”. LOL

    The winner of the night was the Republican Party, 24 yr old Dishon Francis was articulate and made many good points, he was the most poised outside of Marilyn. Rodriguez made good points, but a little long winded to make them, Ethan hit some style points and facts some people didn’t want to hear. So shout out to the Republican party, Welcome to politics in Bridgeport, now to get those registration numbers up so your voice will be more the sound bytes.

    So there you happy, crappy softball questions without tackling real issues makes for a boring debate.

    1. Kelvin, the points of my qualifications were relevant to my ability to implement my plan of getting the City financial house in order and redirecting the City ethical rudder, that pertaining to improvement of city governance, hence quality parks. While from where I was, I couldn’t see Moore but every other candidate had paper notes, a cellphone or tablet to refer to. I had some prepared notes in part because I was aware of the very limited time periods for speaking. I suspect that Moore focused on me, although rebuttals were not permitted, in order to deflect attention from what I raised regarding her voting record as State Senator.

      Regarding Francis, essentially all he did was talk about problems and present a wish list. There was no plan or qualifications for accomplishing his wish list.

      That said, I was pleased and proud that there were three Republican candidates in the debate. That’s a good step forward.

      It is notable that what you refer to as increasing numbers of Republicans is occurring. Since December, the number of Democrat voters has decreased by over 900, a decrease of 2%, Republican numbers have increased by 1% and unaffiliateds have increased by 2 1/2%. The beginning of such a trend can be the tipping point.

      The most important point raised during the debate was what I said about the dangerous trend of several decades of the secularization of government, the trend of several decades of some people trying to talk God out of public schools. Our great nation was established as a Judeo-Christian nation. I was the only candidate to reaffirm spiritual aspects of government. I refer her to the verse with which I end my Campaign Statement, Psalm 127:1; “Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it. Except the Lord keep the City, the watchman waketh but in vain”.

  2. I could not attend last night due to another obligation but when I read Ganim promising Educational funding its a “Trump” moment – he hasn’t made it a priority for the last three years – don’t believe him now.
    And I truly resent that he ran for Governor while drawing a Mayoral salary

  3. Because her fingerprints are all over Connecticut’s massive debt, I disapprove of Marilyn Moore’s Connecticut affiliation and I dislike her Bridgeport aspirations even more.. If she wants to win she’ll have to interrupt Ganim’s pattern but her team hasn’t figured that out yet. Pattern interruption is how change agents earn their stripes. After last night, it’s advantage: Ganim.

    Kudos to Dishon Francis who brings a fresh perspective, a clean slate and a timely alternative. Never underestimate a determined underdog.

  4. donj says:
    August 21, 2019 at 3:51 pm
    I honestly think Moore being african american alone will take away gainims base that he had 2015 election as a lot of people want somebody to look like them being mayor. I also think moore will win the white vote big time

    donj I believe this to be factual. It just goes beyond the Bridgeport Mayoral race with Ganim. There was a reason they tapped Moore to run for the State Senate with relatively no political history. To win the African American vote in the Port. But it’s not just about wanting somebody to look like them to be mayor. If that was factual, they would vote for Francis, who I thought won the debate and who was the best black candidate in the dais. But no matter how many people want somebody to look like them to be mayor. They will not vote for one who has an “R” attached to their name and looks.

    My only criticism of Moore, and for that matter, Gomes, their unenthusiastic efforts to bring a casino to the Port. Based on their concern about the negative social-economic effects of gaming, without weighing the benefits of a Port casino. Yet it was suitable for them to vote to support one and bring gaming benefits to East Windsor.

    I said this one and I’ll say it again, “Gaming in Bridgeport will be the economic engine for the city that makes it an entertainment destination that will (can) enhance the quality of the Port. If it’s done correctly. However, the body of the Port will depend on the Mayor’s office and City Council.

    Rest to sure, the Port will go nowhere without this engine, and there is no other engine that will get this city moving.

    While this debate was, as Jorge said “one if the most fuckin boring forums he has ever seen” 🙂 One of the main reasons it was, somewhat, a “tepid” debate was Joe can’t attack Moore without gaining collateral damage in the black community, and the other three candidates don’t really matter, no matter what color or race. So, Joe was the only punching bag on the dais, coupled with incumbency, he took some hits and didn’t defend himself too well either. 🙂

    However, my main concern was not alleviated though. In fact, it was reinforced. When the debate touched upon affordable housing, I continue to have concerns, with Moore’s responses to the closing of The Greens and Marina. When she said the people, who would be moved out because of their closing needs to be relocated to the Port and not elsewhere. Why? Does it really matter to those who are living in substandard, horrible conditions and move out of the Port to a neighboring town, as long as their new housing is clearer, safer and better? Joe defended the closings by saying a person shouldn’t have to live in such slum conditions. But didn’t attack Moore on her position.
    Francis at least challenged Moore on affordable housing. When he stated one of the main problems with affordable housing is it always forced on cities like Bridgeport that stymies commercial development because towns like Monroe and Trumbull, towns Moore represents, always block affordable housing. not want them. Just something to think about Port.

    PS Joe, I of the tiger, I hope your strategy was like Rocky in Rocky 3 with Mr. T, because you took some hits. 🙂

    1. Teixara,,, I posted several articles in the last couple of weeks showing the casino business is losing money throughout the Northeast United States. New York casinos are losing money. The Yonkers site can be turned on a dime. The Springfield MA casino is underperforming. IT’S OVER. CASINOS ARE FINISHED AND DONE WITH.

    2. Robert, there’s no basis to say that voters will never vote Republican. The shift from D to R gas been rather steady in Bridgeport for seven months. That’s inevitable given the track record of the Dem majorities locally and in Hartford. The public is becoming more aware of what I said during the debate. A usual trait of Dem officials is to be more responsive to people’s wants and needs without well considering personal responsibility, the short term view. Republicans tend to properly consider personal responsibility, a longer term view. The trend of the Dems is toward urban decay. The trend with Republicans is development. The public is becoming more aware of this. I have encountered Dems who say they will not vote for a Dem candidate as long as there is a good Repub candidate. A tipping point normally comes!

      1. I never said voters don’t vote Republican, however, Democrat voters “tend” to vote Democrat. 🙂

        Didn’t you say, “I heard the only way a Republican would win in Bridgeport is with a Scandal, who needs a scandal when we have Joe”? Is Joe enough for that tipping point?

        P.S you, (R) can’t have it both ways. The people have a personal responsibility to their wants and needs and not support them from getting the resource for those wants and needs though work. like not supporting the 15 wage or the employees of Stop & Shop like you did.

        It’s like you saying well business can’t provide it, and I don’t want the government to provide it. So basically you are saying I don’t want them to have it. JS

        1. Robert, you read more into what I said and have done. Regarding Stop & Shop, I didn’t take a position because I didn’t have all the facts. There were two sides and the negotiators were in better positions to draw the lines and make the ultimate decision. Also, I never said or implied that government should never come in to assist assist people with needs. What I have said is that needs should be distinguished from wants and also factored with personal responsibility. Anything else over time results in urban decay!

    3. RT,
      I am happy to know that there were a number of regular OIB writers in the Klein audience on Wednesday for the Mayoral forum. And that OIB now provides a forum to discuss specific “hits, misses and/or errors” of the event. (If this were a sports event I can see network television seating Kelvin Ayala, Harvey Weintraub, Frank Gyure and even ‘Yawn” LE for specific comments that time did not allow. But a tell is still there.

      For instance, how many times did Ganim2 use the words “accountable” or “accountability” in his slices of responses to the questions posed?? Did he reference accountability that evening more than he has for the nearly four years of his “second chance”? Has he ever been “accountable” for the specific fiscal situation he encountered when Finch left office and what he did about poor or illegal practice? How is Ganim 2 accountable when his budgets and programs are full of trumpets and drums but no priorities, no timelines and no purpose or goals which can be measured? Ganim2 set in place, Ed Adams, former FBI man with legal expertise, to operate an Office of Public Accountability and Integrity. What has occurred from Mr. Adams to justify the creation of the position? Where is Ganim2 claiming accountability for this position and what it has produced for us taxpayers? Was this poorly thought through, inefficiently established, and an expensive example of Ganim2 approach to “public administration”?? Unprofessional?? A waste of time, funds and public trust?

      Housing in the City was raised and is a complicated subject. Ganim2 has not simplified a global understanding of his thoughts and action. The Bridgeport Housing Authority changed its name in recent years to Park City Communities but the 5,000 or more people who are housed in public housing “projects” with major safety and health issues has not been studied, evaluated and become a formal program. With half of the HUD subsidies providing for the folks who reside in Greene, Beardsley, Barnum, Harborview, Marina, etc the other half of HUD tens of millions goes for section 8 assistance. How effective is the Mayoral Housing Commission? Are there any annual reports on line that show progress from one year to the next? Who evaluates the Acting Director of PCC and why is there no move to lock in a conscious competent professional who lives in the City and is responsible to the entire community for this citizen group that really forms a major community within Bridgeport? Why is the Department of Justice pursuing in court the failure to provide “reasonable accommodation” to enough residents in the past?? Has anything changed today?

      With more than a dozen years as Mayor Ganim1, a lengthy retreat from the real active world brought on by “personal corrupt behavior” to advantage himself personally and financially through his public office, a denial by the judicial system to welcome him with a return to legal practice, and his sadness shared with some African American faithful to secure a “second chance” at running for office, Joe has had the time, the municipal resources and the media to call upon folks who are expert in public administration to do the work as he directs. Has that happened?

      Would the panel have dealt in greater depth with the numerous “hanging” issues in the Bridgeport Police Department? I think that the slow response times, regular issues arising that presumably can be answered by more training, failure to adopt genuine “community policing” programs, failure to strategize to reduce overtime, ignoring the idea that recruiting in Police Departments is a regular issue, not something that is boom or bust, and more indicate more attention. And yet each of these issues ends up at the Mayor’s desk by the way our City has structured organization. And they are structured without any regular accountability from the person at the top of the pyramid. Is Humpty Dumpty ready for a fall? Time will tell.

        1. RT
          Is the problem that I complicate what you think of as a simple world by including facts, issues, and current problems that face all of us? Is your opinion about my writing perhaps because of your attention span or reading comprehension? (Somehow your vocabulary, spelling and grammar usage seems to have advanced with the practice of more writing over time.) Understanding complex statements may take a little more time.

          I had no hand in forming the questions asked at the forum. Perhaps the dissatisfaction with the answers provided had more to do with the time allocated to answers and to the fact that challenges of other speakers’ comments was so limited.

          You and others always have the opportunity to talk with me directly. At least three of the folks on the platform (as well as two other previously announced candidates who decided not to pursue office this year) have spoken with me on one or more occasions and know that I will freely share what I have learned about city governance without regard for party affiliation. (203-259-9642 to set up opportunity for a cup of coffee and conversation)? Time will tell.

          1. Robert Teixiera
            Your comments following my 8-24-19 8:41 AM posting are too far down the thread to provide a REPLY. Assuming you did not mean to stop a REPLY I will attempt to answer you….both the serious and the fanciful……..Yes, I know that Jesus Christ was born and raised a Jew (although based on simple learning from simpler teaching, there are people who thought the answer to your question might be a Catholic or Christian…….you then turn scatalogical and ask about ice cream…off track….look it up yourself,,,,
            And I suspect you only wish to listen to your own words and stay divided like too many in Bridgeport do, which is why you do not want a face to face conversation? Some would call that unfriendly and others might term it foolish. As for me, I take no offense and just consider that you are learning to distract from on topic questions and subjects when it gets too personal. And that is a personality ‘tell’. Perhaps there is some truth in my closing? Time will tell.

        2. So, then you also know based on simple learning from simpler teaching, there are people who think Jesus was black.

          The funny thing about you suspecting I only wish to listen to my own words and stay divided. Which is why you think I do not want a face-to-face conversation? Why do you feel that I’m divided? What “conversation” gave you that impression of me?
          Why do you pose such a question?

          Is it because you feel I’m not on your side, so I must be divisive? So, do you really think I am the only one who only wishes to listen to their own words?

          As for the scatological ice cream video, it was more of an innuendo to you lying to me if we meet face to face. For there is no real reason for you to tell me the truth or education me on city politics for you have already decided that I’m not on your side. Although I learned a new vocabulary word, “scatological”

          P.S There are many teachings about Jesus, be it the simple learning from simpler teaching, or complex teaching. Although, the Jews and Muslims teach Jesus was not God in the flesh like the Catholics and Christians do. And that time will tell.

  5. Thank you for posting the video. It’s obvious that Joe Ganim does not have his heart and soul in this campaign and his heart and soul is NOT in Bridgeport.

  6. Frank and Harvey are on-target with their comments.
    I suppose Joe Ganim has to settle for being Mayor of Bridgeport given that the Connecticut Bar labeled him an “unrepentant felon” and refused to reinstate his law license.
    One way that I measure one’s commitment to a community is home ownership. Ganim claims he rents an apartment on Main Street. Do any of the candidates own their homes?

    1. On top of that,IF a Democrat wins the White House in 2020, Ganim will be angling for a Federal job. Ganim wants out of Bridgeport. It’s bad for his new image with his new hairline.

    2. Black Rock has a high percentage of interest-only mortgages. Not many understand the BDC (Business Development Company) that closed its operations in 2018.

      1. “Not many understand the BDC (Business Development Company) that closed its operations in 2018” but many DO understand that you’re a blithering idiot.

  7. JMl, You were right “Understanding complex statements may take a little more time.”

    To your second 9 questions paragraph on Ganim’s administration of accountability. I believe Ganim address it. Did he not say they can access all government financial records on-line and is available to the public? As for one’s position in government. That’s not about accountability. It’s one’s way of governments. Maybe Ganim feels Adams is a valued employee. Just because you don’t feel the same doesn’t make it unaccountable. It is your opinion, not a fact.

    To your third, long-winded paragraph on housing. Not sure what you mean by gamin has not simplified a global understanding of his thoughts and actions, other than saying these old substandard living complex needs to be demolished, and people shouldn’t have to live in such conditions.

    JML, move out of your Blackrock home and into the Green’s complex and maybe you can get an understanding of Ganim’s thoughts and actions along with gaining a personal study and evaluation of the major safety and health issues on this complicated subject.

    I don’t know how effective is the Mayoral Housing Commission. Maybe you can ask your boy Kayo, former ethic commissioner, who you support after he got busted for prostitution to join the Ganim’s administration team to address your concerns

    Regarding you four, “original”, paragraph on Ganim’s “retreat” you have an answer for the need of Adams. The agent how sent Ganim to that “retreat”
    Ernie has God to keep him on the straight and narrow, Joe has Adams.

    And to your final paragraph.
    I believe the Police Department has the body and dash cams to help deal with some issues within the BPD. Ganim said people need to be held accountable for their actions. Did he not? Just like Joe and Ernie, when they were held to account for their past actions and sent on their “retreat” Policing is not something like a math problem is to be solved, but something to be managed. Overtime has long been an issue, I hear, and I believe steps are being taken. That is why the 4th of July parade is held at the park, right?

    1. RT
      So after re-reading and reflecting on my statements, you now have formed opinions on each one, in contrast to my presentation of facts and opinions. And that is why I offered face to face conversation, so that folks serious on the subjects discussed can come up to speed ( and those who know more and are willing to inform the rest of us on OIB can learn by listening.
      Here I will take issue with your contentment with “City action” on overtime:
      **Why are there reports of Overtime payments being made less regularly or deferred to PD officers who have properly earned those hours??
      **If one cause of overtime is a department regularly depleted by retirements that can be anticipated in advance from department records, why is it a recurring issue that puts taxpayer dollars under pressure?
      **What did one or more consultants specifically tell the Mayor and the Chief about how difficult issues may be addressed in the PD? Are you on a private list that tells you that the solutions will start showing up in December?
      **Why are we paying former Chief Gaudett for emergency operations and fired Assistant Chief Nardozzi who now has a major suit entered against the CIty? Are these your indications of great public administration?
      These are some of the questions on this subject that I keep searching for honest answers. How about you? Time will tell.

      1. JMl, please re-reading and reflecting on my statements again, my statement was not in contrast to your presentation of facts and opinions. I said steps are being taken on a difficult issue. Did I not? I don’t fault officers wanting to earn overtime. I feel it should be fairly within the departments and to the budgets. I would rather see the money spent on overtime than in lawsuits. That the city is contently paying out for one thing or another.

        1. RT
          And I asked you “what” steps are being taken and accused you of contentment because you accept this as fact, without public evidence, a report from the Finance office or OPM.
          Actually the fact that former Assistant Chief Nardozzi is suing the City administration for his termination while this project of reducing high and continuing overtime excess is a larger clue to where the problem lies. Dig deeper where you can. Time will tell.

          1. JML, If you reflect on my words in my statement I believe I said they moved the parade to the park as a step to reduce the cost of overtime? What is more of a clue the termination of Assistant Chief Nardozzi, who was hired to reduce the high and continuing overtime excess, or the hiring of him to reduce the high and continuing overtime excesses? Without digging too deep, can you tell me if the City Council has a say in the BPD overtime budget? Were you a supporter of Finch administration, who hired Nardozzi? What were the overtime BPD budget expense in Finch’s last year and each year of the Gamin administration? You like to pose questions and you are a numbers man. Can you provide these answers? Or do we have to wait for someone to provide answers? Time will tell.

          2. P.S speaking of clues, Ganim had a large amount of vocal police support in his reelection bid, I don’t see that in 2019, Why do you think that is JML? Maybe Frank can assist you, not sure if he was a Ganim or Finch supporter in 2015 but he is definitely not a Ganim supporter in 2019. 🙂


  8. RT wants simple answers for his questions. Rather than do his research personally, he is trolling for answers from me, and others occasionally, though his intuition tells him not to trust me enough to meet with me. The personal attacks and rivalries may make OIB exciting for many but they provided a dysfunctional and divisive diversion form learning about good municipal governance…..what it might look like and why Ganimatto are not getting it to happen, here.

    RT ….one last attempt at a deeper explanation of accountability: you are satisfied that Ganim made a State Controller program, Open Checkbook available in Bridgeport. I was present that day and publicly thanked Mayor Ganim for this effort that used $24,000 of taxpayer funds to operate annually. During the first year I asked how many hits were indicating public use and effectiveness. NO ANSWER. Then someone pointed out that the local system did not reveal the checks that were funded with borrowed Capital funds. According to Ganim, that was fixed but perhaps no publicity attended to its addition to the Open Checkbook system??
    Did adding the Capital spending to the system cost the City more money? How much? And how many hits are we seeing that would represent ACCOUNTABILITY for taxpayer funds?

    Overtime stats? Go to Nestor Nkwo at OPM. He used to have the numbers. Are they made public? Why not? Police support?? With the majority of personnel living beyond Bridgeport City limits, why is this important at election time any more? Maybe it is for the financial support from the best taxpayer paid employee group in the City?

    Explain why Police department compensation escalated in recent years while education compensation stagnated? There’s more than a simple story there. By the way are you related to Dr. Kayo, whom you disparagingly term, “my boy”? Other than from you, I have not heard from him or other long term supporters of his for years now. I am an advocate for understanding the facts of a story, or at least most of them. If folks get into personal troubles, legal or otherwise, that interfere with their duties or responsibilities, like Ethics Commission, that is a problem I never defended. Remember, Dr. Kayo had medical training and a degree that moved him to serve certain health care needs of the many poor and elderly in our community. What were his actions as regards Ethics that has you making fun of him or me? Do you think that your mixture of personal attacks, questions meant to embarrass or turn off communication, and connections to YouTube snippets makes you an OIB favorite? Please get a little more serious and open to a big tent Bridgeport with a huge table and many chairs for those who wish to be part of serious change. September Primary….November Election Day….Time will tell.

  9. When speaking of trolling, scroll up and you would see you have trolled me with many questions and fewer answers. I would trust you more if you gave some answers and facts like Maria, then just pose questions, and your silence is a telling clue.

    I would agree personal attacks and rivalries make OIB exciting for many. But I would differ on it providing a dysfunctional and divisive diversion from a leaning about good municipal governance. More question and lack of answers can be a contributing factor.

    JML, you can’t have it both ways, wanting TRANSPARENCY then questioning the ACCOUNTABILITY (COST) for that transparency.

    So, people who don’t live in the city work in the city. I believe we do give priority to city residents, and I would like to Bridgeport residents to be considered first when hiring, but should it be absolute? Are you advocating the city builds walls around city governance like Trump around American? Were you born, raised, and educated in the Port?

    From my understanding, most of the education funding comes for the state, and they cut 50 million. Maybe you should ask the governor and state reps why BBOE education funding was cut by 50 million of dollars since Ganim’s reelected.

    Finally, why do you say I disparagingly used the term, “your boy” while you live in the port? You may not be familiar with the urban term “your boy” Instead of telling you to look it up I will tell you. As of my intent of its use. Someone you support. Yes, I make some funny remarks about Kayo’s Daisy Dukes. As for his actions, well, you know what they say, if you dig a hoe long enough you end up in China, We’re there. 🙂

      1. Thank you for the warning. No reason for me to check it out, I take it.
        Thank you also for demonstrating numerous factual errors in your last four posts.
        You demonstrate that “what you believe” you report as fact!!
        Never in doubt, often clearly wrong.
        And on the record as afraid to sit down with an OIB contributor in person, face to face?? Nice manipulation of untruths or half truths on city hiring practices, State education funding and building defensive walls!!
        Could you a person who is so pleased with himself, that new learning is avoided or dismissed. In which case, time is telling in the present.

  10. JML, not sure about the warning, but there’s no reason for you to check it out. for I have no reason to lie to you for I’m not on aside. I didn’t say it was a large step, and also I believe my position on government overtime is a cap on a certain % of one’s pay. While it may not solve the problem, it will address the unfairness within the departments, which can be a factor in your ” dysfunctional and divisive diversion municipal governance”. Nothing creates it like one co-worker looking and working alongside another equal co-worker who is making 3, 4 times what they are making because of those in charge are giving all the overtime to “their boy” I could be at error again, but I believe that government change has to come from the CC.

    Here’s a fact JML, take is for what it is. I’m only divisive in your eyes because I lean towards Joe over you, “your girl” Moore. If I leaned toward Moore, you would not have called me divisive. That is a fact. Unlike you, I’m not on aside though. I lean toward Joe over Moore because of a Bridgeport Casino. although Joe is not over-enthusiastic about brings a casino to the Port he is in a box, unlike Moore who said it is not a priority hers, as Mayor, and I believe her because it wasn’t on for here and Gomes.

    I feel more comfortable with Sen. Bradley in Hartford representing the port to bring a real casino and transforming the Port into an entertainment destination. Rest to sure there are people who don’t want the Port to get one and have the influence it ones had.

    And that to should be negotiated at a % of the revenue to the city. It succeeds in the city succeeds. It grows the city grows, The city has a stake, and the income should be for the city’s green program of beautification. Underestimate the power of trees, plants, and clean streets.

    P.S If you find my belief in the correlation between police overtime and the parade is a step toward police overtime is a factual error, then Trump is on to something. “fake news” I wonder what else I read on the web that is “fake news?


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