Young Gun Dennis Bradley Versus The Warrior Ed Gomes For State Senate

Dennis Bradley
Dennis Bradley

Last summer was the craziest election season in Connecticut’s largest city. Joe Ganim stormed back to make redemption history, upsetting Bill Finch in a September primary relegating Finch the first mayor in city history to lose a primary. How do you top that? Likely never. But when it comes to politics, Bridgeport is the city that rarely disappoints and the 2016 legislative cycle is offering up at least three political pearls.

Political maverick Maria Pereira, the school board member who loves taking on the Democratic establishment, announced last week she’s challenging incumbent State Rep. Charlie Stallworth, a Ganim appointee, in an August primary.

On Monday OIB broke the news that City Council President Tom McCarthy will challenge incumbent freshman Marilyn Moore in a primary in Connecticut’s city-suburban 22nd State Senate District.

Not to be outdone, the other state senator representing Bridgeport Ed Gomes will face a challenge from school board chairman Dennis Bradley, a young smooth-talking attorney.

Bradley-Gomes is a battle between a 30-something and an 80-something.

Ed Gomes
Ed Gomes burns up two phones.

Ed Gomes is warrior who knows the joy of winning, the sorrow of losing, and the exhilaration of regaining a seat he lost.

In the spring of 2012, Gomes got a late start organizing his reelection. Six months earlier he was in the hospital recovering from heart surgery. Ernie Newton took the political establishment by surprise winning the endorsement for the state senate seat he was forced to resign in the aftermath of a public corruption conviction seven years prior. State House member Andres Ayala was also in the race raising early money and building political alliances. In a three-way primary Ayala pulled it out in a close battle with Newton with Gomes a distant third. It seemed Gomes was finished politically.

But hold on a minute. Ayala won reelection two years later, then was appointed by Governor Dan Malloy commissioner of the state Department of Motor Vehicles creating a special election to fill his seat in the winter of 2015. City Council member Ricky DeJesus jumped in. So did Gomes. DeJesus won a tainted endorsement when the chair of the nominating convention who happened to be his lawyer broke a tie. Gomes, however, had secured a spot on the Working Families Party line and croaked DeJesus in the special election following revelations of DeJesus owing back taxes and child support.

Bradley is now the young gun taking on the warrior.

Connecticut’s 23rd Senate District, covering two-thirds of Bridgeport and a piece of western Stratford, is a marvel political science study. In 1980 a genial funeral home director from the East End Margaret Morton challenged the Democratic political establishment’s incumbent candidate Salvatore DePiano in a primary. The nice lady from the East End galvanized anti-establishment forces to become the first African American woman elected to Connecticut’s state senate.

When she retired, Alvin Penn occupied the seat, then Newton, then Gomes, then Ayala, then Gomes again.

Now Bradley is trying to build coalitions to defeat Gomes. In 2014, Bradley challenge endorsed Dem Chris Rosario in a State House primary. He finished second, but in doing so ran ahead of incumbent Christina Ayala. Last year, supporting Joe Ganim, Bradley won a seat on the school board and was named chairman with the blessing of Ganim and Democratic Town Chair Mario Testa.

The young gun versus the warrior is one of three legislative primaries to watch this summer.



  1. Lennie, where is the rest of this story? It’s obvious it’s incomplete because you didn’t mention anything about Dennis Bradley, this so-called young gun. What has he ever done?

    1. He received the most votes citywide for BOE. Which in my limited experience says something to ponder. I do think he is a younger Senator Gomes, in that he understands both the power and responsibility of being a true representative and public servant with the goal of making life better and more fair for everyone, he is a fighter while remaining a gentleman. Not saying he is equally as qualified or experienced, but he is possibly the most positive Bridgeport politician to come down the pike in a very long time.

        1. Because I have worked on his campaigns, and have had discussions with operatives who have had dealings with him, and we pretty much reached the same conclusion. He is also on the city Fire Commission. You could ask your brethren their opinion of him based on commission meetings. (Not sure I have listed the correct title of the commission, Fire fighters or fire commission.)

      1. Ms. Buchanan, in the Democratic Primary, Dennis received 5,811 votes, Ben Walker received 5,648 votes, and I received 5,614.

        The top two schools that tied for the highest number of votes for Dennis Bradley were Wilbur Cross and Thomas Hooker School at 420 votes apiece. If I wanted to take 197 votes from Dennis Bradley to give to one of the opposition candidates it would have been a piece of cake. He won because of my work, Steve Nelson’s work at Wilbur Cross and the results at Dunbar School.

        Dennis Bradley is absolutely nothing like Ed Gomes. Although I have disagreed with Ed Gomes, the one thing I absolutely know is he is not for sale. Dennis Bradley only cares about himself. Period.

        Dennis Bradley is cut from the same cloth as Mario Testa, Joe Ganim, Danny Roach, Ralph Ford, etc. The only individual any of these elected officials care about is themselves. As long as there is something in it for them; they are all in. Nothing they do is on the behalf of their constituents or community.

        You should know the only “goal” he has is to defeat Jim Himes in eight years. That is not hearsay. That is what he stated to me in front of Ben Walker. You should know when he first moved here he was employed by Jim Himes. Let’s just say it didn’t last long and it did not end on good terms.

        Dennis Bradley is a charlatan who would sell his mother, your mother, and my mother if he thought it would benefit him politically.

        He is handsome, articulate, and somewhat intelligent (poor speller); however when you get past the first five minutes, there is nothing of substance below the surface.

        I remember the first time I sat with him. He had decided to run for state rep. and Howard Gardner asked him to meet with him.

        We agreed to meet at the Blue Martini. I asked him a simple question, why do you want to run for state rep.?

        He spoke for 45 consecutive minutes with very little interruption. After he finished I said ‘I don’t know you but my initial opinion is you sound like a used -car salesman/snake oil salesman and you remind me of Paul Vallas. You are fast-talking with a hard sales pitch that comes across as condescending and insincere. I then asked him if he had ever received that type of feedback before. He said “yes, not the part about Paul Vallas but I have heard the other feedback. He then said “that’s not good.”

        My mistake was in allowing others to persuade me it was just a bad first impression and to give him a chance. I have to just listen to my gut instincts and NOT let others influence me.

        1. Welcome back. Glad you are not going to be gone for good from posting on the blog. I know he worked for Himes, never heard him say anything against Bradley when we discussed Dennis. Oh well, political manners I suppose. So why the WFP endorsement for Bradley and not you if he is what you present him to be? No need to answer because your insight and opinion, well never mind.

          1. I resigned from the WFP state board and want absolutely nothing to do with the WFP. Dennis went through a 4-6 week interview process with the WFP and never once spoke with Ben, myself or anyone from Joe’s campaign.

            By the way, one of the commitments he made to the WFP is he would not run against Ed Gomes for senate this election cycle.

            Dennis and I had a heated text message exchange about his backroom deal with the WFP. He repeatedly referenced my 19-year-old daughter in the exchange and made such inappropriate remarks about her, those in Joe’s headquarters were outraged and upset.

            I am printing those comments, laminating them, and we are going door-to-door in the 138th and showing every voter what he wrote.

            As I stated, his word means nothing, he is unethical, he is morally challenged and he is a snake.

        2. You mean this email? Sent to the state capital withdrawing support? Of course it was a HUGE jump to conclusion on my part that you would ever actively lobby to stop the bill based on your past behavior.

          Dear Jennifer,
          As you know from our meeting this morning, I am at the State Capitol today.

          I had an opportunity to ask Rep. Hennessy if there was any truth to the rumor that a deal had been reached with the machine and the labor unions.

          He confirmed that a “compromise” had been reached.

          Under the compromise, the 6 members of the current city council who are city employees will be exempt from the legislation, and will be eligible to run for re-election to their council seats for as long as the machine wants them.

          As I said to you this morning, this is unacceptable to me.

          All that this does is sanction conflict of interest for 6 people.

          On what basis does the General Assembly decide to treat these 6 people differently from any other City employee in the City of Bridgeport?

          This is nothing more than a face-saving device for Mayor Finch and the Machine.

          Our legislators undoubtedly led by Rep. Groggins, will claim to have done something significant, but will have changed absolutely nothing.

          They will all claim victory and once again, we the people will be the losers, as they pat each other on the back.

          This is politics at its worst, and I withdraw my support from this legislation.

          I would rather have the issue, than this sell out.

          Maria Pereira has authorized me to advise you that she joins me in this position.

          Carmen L. Lopez

          1. Ron, it is the second time I have posted this and Judge Lopez has never contacted me to ask me not to share the email. Quite frankly, I would hazard a guess I am not the only recipient of this email, because simply informing me of the withdrawal of support certainly would not inform or influence the voting legislation body, would it?

          2. No. She does not have Judge Lopez’s permission to post this email.

            No, Ms. Buchanan, this email did not work last time and it will not work this time. You are well aware that NO legislators were copied on this email. Absolutely none.

            No wonder you like Dennis Bradley. You’re just like him. Unethical, dishonest and morally challenged.

            This email specifically states I authorized Judge Lopez to inform YOU that we did not support the amended bill.

            Once again, where is the email/text I sent to all the legislators regarding my withdrawal of Hennessy’s amended bill?

          1. Hector, I have nothing but respect for you. The comment I made to Dennis was absolutely not a criticism of you, your personal ethics or professionalism. 🙂

    1. Oh, you! I have known Dennis a few years, worked on his first campaign. Have I really been gone that long? Hey, I am not saying he is equal to Senator Gomes, or will win. I am saying, get to know him and I think you will find him to be a good man and someone to support in Bridgeport elections in the next few years.

  2. Ron, these may be some of the missing pieces.
    Dennis Bradley runs for State Rep two years ago and loses. Then he runs for Board of Ed last year and wins. Very concerned about the children in the Bridgeport schools.
    Then before he attends his first BOE meeting, he is already talking about running for State Senate.
    Then he cuts a deal with Mario T to get elected Chairman of the BOE, all before doing a thing about education in the city. Now he is running for State Senate also. No indication he will step down from the BOE.
    This background tells me he is a greedy, power-driven, egotistical young politician who will cut deals with the devil to further his own ambitions.
    And please don’t tell me Joe Ganim is not involved in some of this, either.

    1. Bob, that’s why I’m surprised about Jennifer’s comment. Dennis Bradley is nothing but a puppet for Mario Testa and it’s Mario Testa who has made the decision Bridgeport doesn’t need the black State Senators the voters of Bridgeport have voted for. Why, because Mario knows Senator Gomes and Senator Moore will not be his puppets.

      1. I will admit I knew Bradley pre Mario and Joe. And I like the two sitting Senators. My discussion with Bradley re his alliance with Joe was, Finch made sure I would never run or be elected. I doubt Bradley would be anyone’s puppet. I am in no way saying he should be elected over Senator Gomes, but at some point retirement will be in the cards for this honorable man, and to consider not selling Bradley short going forward.

    2. Yes, he has made it no secret he wants to run for office and make a positive difference for Bridgeport. I will grant you, your timeline makes him look less than positive, and do we know for sure Mario and Joe did not approach him to be president of the BOE because their dealings with him proved him to be a person who can unite and move positive agendas forward? I am not one to promote Democrats as a rule, but I am also realistic enough to recognize and support good ones when I find them.

      1. Jennifer, you said, “Yes, he has made it no secret he wants to run for office and make a positive difference for Bridgeport,” well Jennifer, Bradley would have been better off in making that statement and then say right now I’m supporting Senator Gomes. Bradley would gain a lot of support of those who support Gomes but no, Bradley has to do what Mario is telling him to do.

      2. “Yes, he has made it no secret he wants to run for office and make a positive difference for Bridgeport.”
        Well where can you make a bigger difference, the BOE or in Hartford where the only thing they do is create deficits?
        There is no important work than the work of our children. This is the second person from the BOE seeking another office. Let me tell you, they are both self-centered bastards.

        1. Aw, Ron and Andy, considering my track record with candidates I have supported, it should relieve you greatly that I have anything positive to say about candidates you oppose! And on that note, I must go volunteer for Governor Pence’s re-election because I want that candidate to be soundly defeated.

          1. Jennifer, from a former Black Rock neighbor, I am no fan of Gov. Mike Pence and his discriminatory leanings along with his positions on other issues. Maybe he fits well in southern Indiana.

          2. Frank, nor am I a fan, nor are most Hoosiers. He is most likely serving his last term.

      3. Ms. Buchanan, you should know Ms. Baraka, Mr. Gardner, Mr. Walker, Mr. Bradley and myself repeatedly met before we took our seats on December 1st. Ben and I repeatedly tried to warn Sauda and Howard that his word meant nothing and he had repeatedly demonstrated unethical and reprehensible behavior throughout the primary. They wouldn’t believe us.

        Dennis Bradley committed to vote for Howard as BBOE Chair in front of Sauda, Howard, Ben and me the Thursday before our BOE Monday election. I did my best to reiterate Dennis Bradley’s word meant nothing but Sauda and Howard had misplaced Faith in him.

        I told Howard if he really supports you ask him to nominate you because that requires a different level of commitment. I followed up with Howard on Friday, Saturday evening and Sunday. Dennis would not respond to his text or phone messages.

        Sunday night Dennis sent Howard a text stating “we need to talk.” Howard met him in his office the Monday of the BOE officer elections. He told Howard “Joe, Mario, Danny and Ralph and the party want me to be the Chair so I can’t support you.”

        Sauda then met with Dennis later that day and they spoke for almost two hours. Remember, Sauda was instrumental in obtaining the WFP endorsement for Dennis. Dennis promised if Sauda were the nominee for Chair he would vote for her. Once again, I told Howard “don’t you understand that his word means nothing?”

        Sauda was nominated as Chair by Howard and Dennis was nominated by Republican Kevin McSpirit and seconded by Republican Joe Larcheveque whose wife serves on Danny Roach’s TC. The vote was five to four with Dennis Bradley voting for himself.

        You see, when you are as politically ambitious as Dennis Bradley, you will step on anyone to get where you want to be.

        Sauda Baraka, Howard Gardner, Ben Walker and I are absolutely NOT for SALE. We would not do Mario, Joe, Danny or Ralph’s bidding. Dennis Bradley has and will continue to do exactly as he is told. He is never going to ask why. He will only ask how and when.

        If this is who you define as a “good one,” you need to reexamine your standards.

        1. Yes, I suppose Ms. Baraka convincing the Republicans to put her on the ballot and getting her elected, and her never again attending an RTC meeting does not hold a candle to what Bradley did to win an election.

          1. Ms. Baraka has been a registered Republican for years and continues to be so today.

            There is a lengthy list of Democrats who have won and don’t attend DTC meetings. What is your point?

            What does Ms. Baraka not attending RTC meetings have to do with being dishonest, unethical and a snake?

          2. Please, she used the Republican minority advantage to get elected, and now runs on the WFP line. No big deal, just an example of compromise for lack of a better word, that was used to launch a political career. Registration does not seem to match platform in this case.

          3. She was a registered Republican when she was endorsed as a Republican.

            In 2009, she was a registered Republican and I was an Unaffiliated voter on the WFP line. They endorse candidates based on their views and policy stances, not on party affiliation. Ms. Baraka is not the only Republican the WFP has endorsed in CT.

            Getting her elected? The party gave her $300.

            You are right for once. The deplorable actions of Dennis Bradley do NOT hold a candle to Ms. Baraka.

            I have had many disagreements with Ms. Baraka but she is not a liar and she is not for sale.

          4. So let me get this straight. This story and all the comments are about Dennis Bradley and you want to shift the focus to Sauda Baraka receiving the Republican nomination for the BBOE in 2005.

            I guess you can’t defend the indefensible.

        2. Because you claim you and your voting block cannot be bought as Bradley is or was, however using the system to enhance and secure an election has been employed, and while it might not be viewed as a sell-out, I would argue it most certainly is an example of using the system. As to your WFP relationship, you now want nothing to do with them, I have to wonder if it’s a case of mutual wanting nothing to do with, and who was the first to sever the relationship.

          1. I terminated the relationship with the WFP, not the other way around. I made it clear to Lindsey Farrel by phone before I submitted my letter of resignation from the WFP state board.

            I actually still have all the voicemail messages from Lindsey Farrel trying to reach me to apologize for her actions.

            Be careful what you post here, Ms. Buchanan. I am sure you have not forgotten how you posted I sent an email/text to legislators opposing Hennessy’s amended bill regarding city employees serving on the city council. I repeatedly challenged you to post this communication on OIB. I am still waiting for you to do so.

            If I recall, you didn’t post for quite some time after that. I assumed it was because you felt completely embarrassed, which would certainly be understandable.

            By the way, to this day you have never apologized for posting an absolute lie about me, which is a reflection of your character.

    3. Dennis has absolutely no interest in serving on the BOE. He will resign if elected to the State senate.

      He has only attended three committee meetings since January 1st. He doesn’t even attend the committee meetings for the committees he appointed himself to. If he does attend, he is late every time and doesn’t so much as bring a piece of paper.

        1. I read it and find the whole issue very confusing. Law interpretation as a non-lawyer understanding it, lawsuits filed and dismissed, is this a school board issue or local school parents issue? Not being contrary, just full of questions and confusion.
          Are you saying Bradley misses scheduled meetings–or walks out at 11 PM over issues that are not ready to be formally addressed at BOE meetings?

          1. Why would you walk out on parents who were waiting for hours? They waited in line to vote for him, the least he can do is show some respect and acknowledge them.

            Again, this is just a power grab.

          2. As one of the parents who was there that night, I cannot believe anyone would defend the actions of Mr. Bradley and the other BOE members who walked out that night.

            They would have been ready to discuss the topic at hand at length, had they bothered showing up to the special session that was called regarding the parent organization (DPAC).

            Instead, they plotted to walk out on parents (multiple) at 11 p.m. after we sat patiently for almost 5 hours, for the last agenda item to come up. When they got up, they didn’t apologize to us for wasting our time. They walked out without as much as a glance in our direction.

            I for one am a “new” parent to this district. I have a kindergarten child. This means I had nothing to do with the lawsuits filed, or the dismembering of the old DPAC. I spent my Monday night (when I could have been at home with my children) in a Bridgeport Public School listening to a BOE meeting. For Mr. Bradley to walk out was not only hurtful, it was insulting. If he can’t take the time to listen and work for parents of Bridgeport Public School students, why anyone would believe he can work for the public as a State Senator is beyond me.

            To add insult to injury, at the next meeting, when multiple parents asked for a public apology, Mr. Bradley couldn’t give us one. One of the BOE members did in fact apologize, a perfect time for Mr. Bradley to agree and also apologize. Instead, he chose to ignore the parent’s feelings and move on.

            Mr. Bradley is not the State Senator Bridgeport needs.

          1. So you’re saying Bradley can effectively be a State Senator and chair of Bridgeport Board of Education? Good luck trying to get to all of those meetings.

          2. And isn’t this a conflict of interest? What about those Stratford voters in the 23rd?

          3. Ms. Buchanan,
            Are you condoning Dennis Bradley and your fellow Republican’s actions, of walking out of a meeting in progress after BPS sat respectfully for five hours to hear five agenda items discussed, debated and voted on?

            I wonder if Dennis Bradley and your fellow Republicans served on the Westport BOE and there were 10 white affluent parents in the same scenario, if they would have behaved in the same outrageous and disrespectful manner.

            I think we all know the answer to that question.

          4. Jennifer, are you suggesting this parent is a liar? She was there, you’re in Indiana.

          5. Lisa/Jennifer–I asked this below and will repost here. Everyone is up in arms about those members leaving that night, and they make a valid point. However, at the first official meeting this year, Maria walked out on the parents and the board when Bradley was made chairman. She did so to attend the town council meeting that evening. I missed the formal apology to the parents for leaving them that night when there were pending items and it was well before 11pm.

          6. Lifelong,
            I was at the first BOE meeting where Mr. Bradley was elected and there wasn’t a single agenda item of any significant importance on the agenda.

            Board meetings are supposed to be held on the 2nd and 4th meeting of every month, however the previous board inadvertently changed the date of the annual organizational meeting the year prior when they submitted the annual calendar.

            Ms. Pereira had already agreed to meet 10 of her Thomas Hooker constituents at that night’s City Council meeting, NOT Town Council, before she received notice of the Board meeting’s date.

            She notified the Interim Superintendent the previous Board had made an error in the annual calendar, however Joe Ganim wanted to move forward with that date because he felt he could make both meetings in a timely manner, which it turned out he was late for the City Council, not Town Council, meeting.

            If you don’t know anything about Maria, she absolutely believes in keeping her word. Whether it is to her constituents, neighbors, colleagues, or politicians. That is something that should be admired, not criticized.

      1. Ms. Buchanan, Dennis Bradley attended his very first BBOE meeting in February in 2015. He only attended five additional meetings after we announced our candidacy because I repeatedly reminded him it was inappropriate to not attend them and he should want to know the issues at hand. In each of the five meetings he attended he was late and left early.

        He is a 31-year-old who has lived in Bridgeport for six years with no children. He has no in-depth knowledge around national, state or local education policies, therefore he should not be BOE Chair.

        No one should walk onto the BBOE and be the Chair. No one. Dennis Bradley serving as Chair is not what is best for over 21,000 students. It is definitely what’s in the best interest of slimy politicians who want to flood the BOE with patronage jobs.

        He is completely clueless about BOE policy, CGS that governs the BOE, the FOIA and Robert’s Rules of Order.

        He actually wrote an email to me this week he is going to stop me from “participating in our board meetings.” I must “apologize and comport myself.” Last time I checked I don’t live in North Korea.

        He also wrote “you don’t care about little brown and black children growing up to be ignorant” which is particularly outrageous considering I have a “brown child” who received their entire PreK-12 education from the BPS. And he has no children.

        1. And I would argue, the schools have not progressed at all, perhaps having someone not invested in what was best for their child, but can objectively look at the whole picture might be needed or helpful. Some of my best teachers never were parents. As to filling the schools with patronage jobs, yes, there is a LONG terrible history of this in Bridgeport. So how successful has the BOE been in preventing this?

          1. Please stay in Indiana because you are absolutely clueless.

            You would have to ask your friend Dennis and your Republicans Joe Larcheveque and Kevin Mcspirit. Oops! Let us not forget Danny Roach’s dear friend Dave Hennessey and “let’s make a deal” Andre Baker who sold everyone down the river to cut a deal with Finch for his state rep seat.

            You are in no way knowledgeable about BPS, our students who are 97% minority or public education, period.

          2. Sure Maria, because I spent a year as a volunteer in one of the at-risk kindergarten classes, in Bridgeport hands-on in the trenches, and I neither care nor understand. Yup, every week, three days and I don’t have a clue? The schools need an intense English language program for many of the non-English-speaking students, not being able to communicate is probably the biggest stumbling block I saw in the students. The schools need to get more kids into extra therapy for large and small motor skills, teachers need to be able to teach and deal with issues and not write reports all day long. Teachers need to be allowed to bring pizza and sodas into the classrooms on back-to-school night so parents don’t have to chose between eating between jobs and attending school meetings. It would be good if the toilets worked. Getting rid of no child left behind and common core would allow children to learn and teachers to teach.
            And you need to open your eyes and heart and stop judging a person by what they look like on the outside when you know little about their private volunteer time. Oh yes, and it would be super good if the food budget was 80% on food rather than food worker salaries.

          3. Based on my math, you spent 123 days in a kindergarten class for one year. What we don’t know is the average amount of hours you spent in that classroom per day. How many hours per day, Jennifer?

            Let’s do some basic math together.

            CT was granted a waiver for the NCLB over two years ago. NCLB no longer exists nationally and has been replaced by the Every Student Succeeds Act signed into law by Obama in 2015.

            This made national and local news and was reported in every major paper.

            Please share with us again regarding your in-depth knowledge around public education and the BPS.

          1. If you put in 5-1/2 hours per day at 123 total days it totals 677 hours. It is an impressive time commitment in volunteering in our public schools, but it doesn’t mean you possess in-depth knowledge around our public schools or public education.

            Your comment on NCLB was a huge red flag that you are not as knowledgeable as you are attempting to portray.

          2. You didn’t claim to be an “expert” and I never referenced your being an “expert” either.

        2. I did not live in Bridgeport in the ’90s and have never been on the BOE. Perhaps you can address why the city schools have not focused on creating more inter-district magnet schools to secure more funding rather than railing against state funding formulas, which the legislation for years has refused to change. I have no idea how the process works regarding changing school designation, so please enlighten us.

        3. Of course you did not, it began with I am clueless and have no knowledge and progressed to I have no in-depth knowledge, which I never claimed to have. Only a bit of knowledge and observations based on my experience. Would you care to weigh in on my suggestions and observations?

          1. The legislature placed a moratorium on any new inter-district magnet schools because of the cost.

    1. It’s despicable the BOE has become a launchpad for higher offices. What happened to serving for the kids? Both he and Pereira should be focused on finding a solution to our failing schools instead of worrying about the next election high.

      1. Ms. Palmer, the BPS is the most underfunded school district in CT on a cash basis. Hartford receives $80 million more per year, and although New Haven and Bridgeport have almost the exact same amount of students, New Haven receives almost $60 million more per year. This is because the legislature has not met its constitutional responsibility to provide Bridgeport’s children with the same education Fairfield, Trumbull etc. provide theirs.

        No one in our eight-member delegation possesses in-depth knowledge around public education. In fact, several state reps. asked me to run for state office after I spent seven weeks last year lobbying legislators against Dr. Perry’s Charter School.

        My work on the BBOE will be deeply intertwined with my work in the legislature should I be elected. Having someone who can speak intelligently and articulately.

        1. Isn’t part of the reason for the funding difference because inter-district magnet schools receive more funding because they serve more communities, and Bridgeport does not have as many as the towns you use in comparison? If so, why did the city not recognize this sooner and create more of these schools?

          1. I was 23-27 years old when inter-district magnet schools were being built in New Haven and Hartford in the ’90s. There was a big push based on the Sheff vs. O’Neill decision, which Bridgeport was not a plaintiff in.

            You’re older than I am, Jennifer. I would think you would know the answer better than I.

      2. Ms. Palmer, what is despicable is our state spends $55,000 per year to incarcerate our residents but only provides $8,600 per year to educate our Bridgeport youth.

        The work I have done and continue to do around public education will be deeply intertwined with my work in the legislature should I be elected.

        Hartford receives $80 million more per year in state funding, and New Haven $60 million more per year in funding than Bridgeport. That is what I would describe as despicable.

        There is not a single member of our delegation who can have an in-depth discussion around the state of public education in Bridgeport. Should I be elected; that will be my number-one cause.

        The only way to truly move Bridgeport forward is to invest in public education. Do that, and you will reduce crime, drug dealing, incarceration rates, dropout rates, unemployment rates, public assistance rates, etc.

        Investing in our public schools is the best investment our Mayor and state can make. We have waited 40 years for politicians to do the right thing. Where has it gotten us?

        1. As you inform the OIB public of the financial situation, historical and present, it would be reasonable to advise them there is another fiscal difference between Hartford and New Haven as recipients of State funds and Bridgeport. In the latest figures released in a BOE presentation, Hartford and New Haven taxpayers are funding at a rate exceeding $4500 per pupil per year while Bridgeport taxpayers are funding at a $2750 per pupil per year rate. That divergence needs study locally as well as communication to all taxpayers in how we find ourselves where we are, doesn’t it? And it takes folks out to the lesser-attended meetings to speak, like the City Council CAPITAL BUDGET Hearing last evening with only two speakers, one from the public and one from the Finance Director. When will the public come out around money? Time will tell.

          1. Thanks, JML. Can you please explain how Bridgeport arrives at the taxpayer funding amount for BOE? Thanks!

  3. Jennifer, I can remember many, many years ago taking another young Bridgeport politician door-to-door in my neighborhood. A next-door neighbor (retired BPD) commented to me afterwards, he seems kind of young and ambitious.
    And I replied so what’s wrong with a young ambitious politician? The young man went on to win and the rest is history.
    Needless to say that man was Joe Ganim.

  4. Bradley owes the children of Bridgeport an apology, that apology to those who relied on him and the residents of Bridgeport who voted him onto the BBOE. How dare he bail out on them now that a better offer comes along? What fool would think this opportunist would make a State Senator the residents of Bridgeport could depend on?

  5. Donald,
    I think you are wrong. I don’t think Bradley has any intention of stepping down from the BOE. Just like I don’t think McCarthy has any intention of stepping down from the council nor the Council Presidency.
    They like the perceived power. They like acting like they are in charge. They just haven’t figured it out yet.
    They are nothing. They have nothing.
    They will eventually figure out they are merely puppets. To Mario. To Joe. To whomever.

    1. Yes, the poster boy for conflict of interest wants to replace a good gov’t senator, let alone the only female African American in the Senate.

      1. Frank Underwood, I agree with you and as I said before, this is Mario Testa’s move to get rid of the two black State Senators, Gomes and Moore, to put his puppets Bradley and McCarthy in their place.

        1. I predicted all this. I’ve known M.T. since he got off the boat. He couldn’t even say the word politics. To those of you who live in Bridgeport, and feel as most do about Tom Mac and M.T., the only way to correct this is to give some time to help Ed and Marilyn.

    2. Dennis will resign from the BBOE if elected to the state senate. He has no interest in serving on the BOE.

      He has only attended three committee meetings and he only attended Ben’s committee meeting after Ben spoke publicly and asked him to resign from his committee and as BBOE Chair.

      In other words, he was shamed into attending.

  6. I have to say this was a well thought out constructive blog. I don’t know Dennis or Connecticut politics in general. My gut feeling says Maria would be the most effective representative in Hartford fighting on behalf of Bridgeport. Maria, I wish you success in your campaign.

  7. Robert Teixeira, if you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there. You don’t know about Dennis, you don’t know about Connecticut politics, yet you feel comfortable enough to say Maria would be the most effective representative. Maria isn’t a representative, she’s a candidate.

  8. So much for constructive dialog. I tell you what I think I do know, I don’t know Ron or Donald but I’ll bet you are black. Most of your posts are race related. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with advocating for the black community. This is why I said it’s more about race than merits and you are the Al Sharpton of OIB. You just throw a black man under the bus whom you say you’re supporting because I’m supporting Maria (white/Portuguese) over Stallworth (black man). Dennis, who you say is support by the Mario and DTC, along with other candidates who’s targeting black representatives. Dennis is challenging Gomes who is black and you’re supporting him. Maria is not currently being support by the DTC (HOPE) Mario, forget about it. She’s talking about how Dennis is unethical, insincere and unqualified, based on her experiences with him and should not be elected. She’s supporting Gomes in that manner. You’re so blinded by race. Your post suggested Maria doesn’t know what she’s talking about. I may not know where I’m going but you’re all over the map and your GPS is guided by color. I think, because politics is kind of self-serving. So are you supporting Dennis who is being supported by Mario and the DTC and who you say is targeting black representatives or Gomes (black man) or are you just against Maria? I will say this though; at least you know were Maria stands.

      1. Robert Teixeira, did racism ever go away? Or did it just change forms and go underground? It has been well documented over the past 16 years (since the turn of the century) that the racial disparities of the last half of the 20th Century are still very much in evidence today. In some instances, they are greater than they were 40 or 50 years ago.

        These studies, that come from everywhere, from major universities to private research institutions to civil rights organizations, all say the same thing: that race is still very much prevalent in American society, whether we talk about it or not. So since race differences never went away, can we also assume racism never went away? Of course we can. Thus, the need for a renewed race dialogue. America is not colorblind. It’s so blinded by color it just can’t see racism. Like looking into sun with Ray-Bans, the glare doesn’t make that object in front of you disappear. You will still run into it if you don’t make an adjustment in your vision. America never made the adjustment and Robert it is painfully obvious you haven’t made that adjustment either.

        1. LOL. You called me racist. As Jesus said “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?” Racism a privilege in America, It masks what is the root cause, Evil, hate. Would you say Rwanda was based on color? I’m supporting Maria. Why does that make me a racist or at the least I’m blinded in my racism? Don’t confuse racism with inclination. All things being equal, if a white person fought a black person, white people would want the white person to win, and black people would want the black person to win. I’ll assume you’re black since you didn’t answer my question. Now if one of your kids got into a fight with another black kid, whom would you want to win? Your kid, right, if your kid got into a fight with a white kid you would still want your kid to win. Does that make you racist? Ironic, Religion has been Bridging that gap. But this Bridge takes on many forms. Career, Schools, Sports, even your city, state etc. or anything that connects you to another person. As far as the black community in Bridgeport is concerned, Maria will fight for what she stands for and that’s the education system, the black community will benefit more than you can see. But until you deal with what’s in your eye you won’t see. Or at least what my eyes allow me to see based on the plank or sawdust in it.

  9. According to Maria, Dennis shouldn’t be elected over Gomes. Is she right? Enlighten me. Who do you think should represent Bridgeport, Dennis or Gomes?

  10. Perhaps the candidates can talk about issues so voters can be guided. Perhaps one of the priority issues is money, and which candidates can bring a quality message to the voters about money and sustainability of programs and services. I do not find people talking about the subject with much background knowledge on where we are today, and where the trajectory of current governance is headed. Isn’t that an opportunity for a candidate with expertise, who knows how to work with others having demonstrated that previously? Time will tell.

        1. Jennifer, things are so bad with the Connecticut Republican Party, they can’t even find someone to run as a U.S. Senator. Hey, maybe David Walker could throw his name into the mix. No, that won’t work because he doesn’t live in Connecticut.

          1. Hey, cut it out with spreading untruths about Walker. He most certainly does live in CT more than 2/3 of the time, and he most certainly would like to sell his house. I know last fall his lovely wife Mary wanted to stay in Bridgeport, smaller house or condo to purchase was discussed. I have no idea if he wants to run for the senate or not. I believe a couple of other Republicans have thrown their hats into the ring. The grand old party is certainly giving everyone paying attention quite the show of shows this year, are they not? In the meantime, tomorrow the ink will be dry and I will be officially off the tax and electorate rolls in Bridgeport and CT. Very sorry I never had the opportunity to shake your hand and sincerely thank you for all you post on OIB. I learned a great deal from your posts, and wish you much happiness and joy in your life.

        2. Jennifer, I was listening to WICC at 5:00pm and they had a reporter from the CT Mirror talking about the upcoming election and he stated as of right now there is no Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate. As for Walker he was the one saying he’s leaving.

          1. Okay, Walker wants to sell, leaving. Evidently their plan to downsize and stay has changed. August Wolf has declared his candidacy. As far as I can tell, he has not withdrawn, he just hired new staff. Maybe it’s because there is no endorsed candidate yet. I heard someone from the Bethel area is considering. The incumbent name recognition is pretty hard to defeat in this state.

      1. Ron,
        I checked with Registrar office yesterday. Still listed as a Democrat. Also in my comments on the Capital Budget last night I said: “The “red boots” symbols are not the fault of politics, as we have only one party in operation in the City.” So talking about Republicans is a deflection from the issues at hand, isn’t it?
        Now Jennifer has posted 28 times and Maria has returned about 23 volleys in this thread about Dennis Bradley. (Oh, to be a young, handsome, professional male with a smile that can sell toothpaste, if nothing else.)
        And MONEY is an issue, isn’t it? The BOE budget needs MONEY from the City, if nowhere else. Rough numbers suggest the Mayor has budgeted BOE operating at $227 Million, $15 Million short of Superintendent Raminowitz’ request, it seems. That does not include transportation, nutrition, or debt financing. So if Educational Cost Sharing comes in (after the Governor fiddles with his budget to get everyone’s attention) and Bridgeport receives $165 Million from that source, then the City would be paying about $62 Million for school operations. And $77 Million is the minimum necessary!! Why aren’t Bradley and Pereira (and the other seven BOE members) using every opportunity to call community attention to the issue? Is this a time to talk about party politics or about taking care of the 22,000 youth of the community? Time will tell.

  11. I must say I both enjoyed and was enlightened by this conversation. As time goes by, I will support Senator Marilyn Moore in her bid for re-election. I have a very low opinion of Dennis Bradley and hope he simply disappears from our community. Hopefully, the defeat of McCarthy and Bradley in their bids for State Senate will further weaken the Ganim/Testa alliance. I look forward to seeing and working with new slates of City Council members in all or every Council district in the City Council Elections in 2017. I find this City Council has established new lows in terms of performance and representation of their constituents.

        1. Ron, I told you M.T. has an agenda. He’s trying to recapture perceived power and causing havoc in the process. Remember, the more primaries, the better his business does. All candidates endorsed are almost obliged to hold their fundraisers in his restaurant.

      1. Lisa, I am calling no one a liar. Not sure how my response to Underwood moved to under the parents latter post. There was time parent public speaking at the meeting. The walk-out happen after public speaking and before the vote to–as I understand it–either dissolve the current elected parent representatives or the entire organization so the re-organization and new elections could be held. What exactly was considered being voted on is still unclear to me.

  12. Maria walked out on the parents and the board at the meeting when Bradley was made chairman. She did so to attend the town council meeting that evening. I missed the formal apology to the parents for leaving them that night.

  13. Robert, it said racism is prevalent in America not PRIVILEGE in America. You’re a pseudo intellectual who refuses to read prior to commenting. A mind is a terrible thing to waste.

    1. Your hand I did get to shake, and a hug was thrown in the mix too. I hope I did sincerely thank you for all your postings on OIB, and let you know I am grateful and have learned much from you and Ron, kind of think of you two as a great tag team. Enjoy your life, and keep fighting the good fight!

      1. Thanks Jennifer, you did thank me. I too am grateful and have learned much from you as well and I knew that post was for me. Oh by the way Ron and I have been a tag team for over 20 years.

  14. That’s what I mean about the Race card. Yes, racism exists (hate) and the black community is underserved. I always stated that. The race card is a valid card in the game. However when you look for things that are not there like your last comment, can you see why white people might have issues with the race card? The boy who cried wolf. Now that Mr. Coviello’s going to run against Mr. Baker, are you going to say he’s or it’s racist? Based on your interpretation of me calling racism in American a privilege to your comment on racism is prevalent in America, you might have a plank in your eye. You see what you wanted to see. All this is based on my support of Maria and Gomes. Think about it. Bam, I’m out. Maria and Gomes, I wish you the best.

      1. My first cousin whom I grow up from infancy to most of my adolescence and my best friend from the neighborhood was also black (mix). And to answer to your question, no. I never keyed into it. I was borderline retarded. How I got there, that’s a whole other story. My development was very slow. When you say black, what does the mean? Life is hard. My father left my mother with four kids. He was a junky. My mother was probable an alcoholic. My entire life I grew on welfare. When the utilities were shut off I had to live with my grandmother, depending on how long they were off or how bad thing got, to shield me form reality. So using candles for light or having to boil water to bathe, if my mother could get me to bathe. I literally had three pairs of pants going to high school. I was so “retarded” I didn’t even know most were laughing at me. Hell, I didn’t even know how to spell my own name when I graduated. I got Osama bin Laden when I sought medical treatment. I’m more fearful of going to the hospital and seeing a doctor than walking through the ghetto. That’s just the tip of the iceberg; hell, that iceberg barely scratches the surface.
        So when you ask, have I ever talked to a black person? Tell me, what is black? Slavery, they weren’t the only slaves brought to America. What about the Irish? Weren’t they slaves also? Poverty, what, blacks are the only ones living in poverty? Let’s go back to the word Privilege. Black is not a privilege to be elected, and that’s what you’re stating. This is what started this conversation. There’s nothing wrong with advocating for a particular group either, black, white, Spanish, women, GLBT, Midgets. etc. A quarterback can’t get mad because the other team is trying to sack him, It’s how the game is played. You can’t just call it racist because a white person is challenging a black person. And that’s what you’re doing. The question is why? PS, have you ever talked to a person who was more downtrodden than every ethnic group in the ghetto minus the absence of love?

        1. Robert Teixeira, “Let’s go back to the word Privilege. Black is not a privilege to be elected, and that’s what you’re stating. This is what started this conversation.” First, who said that because I didn’t.

          Robert Teixeira, wow, you know nothing about blacks and very little about history. You have a right to express your viewpoint on issues but people tune you out when you don’t know what you are talking about and right now you are lost.

          You said this, “Tell me, what is black? Slavery, they weren’t the only slaves brought to America. What about the Irish? Weren’t they slaves also? Poverty, what, blacks are the only ones living in poverty?” To asked questions like these tells you just don’t know American history. Someone doesn’t have to be a racist to hurt blacks or people of color, it could be because someone wants power, wealth, jobs and careers, redlining are just a few things that someone does to blacks even today.

          Tim Wise: On White Privilege

          1. Don, you don’t have to be any color to hurt anybody. Do blacks hurt other blacks? Do blacks want wealth, jobs, and careers? Can a black be racist? Let’s go back to privilege. You started this conversation when Maria announced she was running against Stallworth. You claimed Mario and the DTC are targeting black representatives. The privilege came in when you inserted a white person shouldn’t run against a black person. When you injected the race card. Hence my initial question, what is Stallworth’s record.

          2. Sorry Ron, you can answer the questions. Don inserted the race card. This conversation about Maria ended up having nothing to do with her being a representative in Hartford. Ron, were Irish sent to America as slaves? Blacks endure a lot. I never said they didn’t. Let’s look at history. Are blacks mistreated today? Yes. Are they being treated the same as they were a hundred years ago? Does hatred still exists today? Don stated how Stallworth rallied the back community to reelect Joe, technically a criminal who went to jail for robbing the city to place him back in the same position where the robbery took place. LOL. Why isn’t Stallworth rallying the black community to stop the zoning changes for liquor stores? They are part of the problem that keeps the blacks from achieving success. I’m against it. I think a liquor store in every corner is bad for the poorer communities and the city. I’m pro-weed, though. Ron, you act like the same beast that resides in whites can’t resides in blacks. I tell you generally the truth.


  15. Robert Teixeira, you asked what has Charles Stallworth done in Hartford, well this is for your edification.

    Concussion Awareness/Education–House Bill #5141 broadens the definition of youth athletic activities and adds activities involving five and six-year-old participants to extend the concussion awareness requirement to operators of youth athletic activities involving these younger participants.

    Banning Crumb Rubber–House Bill #5139 prohibits the installation of ground cover that contains shredded or ground rubber recycled from motor vehicle tires in municipal and public school playgrounds. Recycled industrial waste such as crumb rubber is known to include cancer-causing chemicals.

    GMO’s–House Bill #5300 would require infant formula, baby food and children’s foods that are produced partially or entirely with genetically engineered materials to be labelled as such.

    Toxic Flame Retardants–House Bill #5299 would prohibit the sale of children’s products containing certain toxic flame retardant chemicals based on their persistence, bioaccumulativity, and toxicity.

  16. Thanks, Don. So why did you feel the need to use the race card? Race was your first reaction to Maria’s announcement, my inquiry and was a continuous theme for all the black representatives being challenged? Just sayin’. Bam, I’m out.

    1. Robert Teixeira, Maria has NEVER won a one-on-one election, her elections had 26 other candidates and the top nine got the position for the DTC. Then for the BOE by law three people had to be elected and she needed a recount in order to win.

      Robert, tell me what has Maria done and what kind of relationship she has with the black community.

  17. There’s a first time for everything. I don’t know, luckily for her according to Don her constituents are white. I’m racist, I hate black people. No, I’m not racist. I hate everybody. Maria and Gomes.

    1. Robert, you have to get a grip, you are spinning out of control, you keep making statements nobody has said about you. Someone is giving you talking points but you need to research things first before you hit send or submit.

  18. Is Don wrong about the demographic makeup? He said it was mostly white and that’s how the race “card” was injected. I’m assuming it was true because if Stallworth lives in a predominate district where blacks live I can’t see the need for race being injected. Why make Maria’s whiteness an issue? Why would White Privilege be injected? It wouldn’t have any effect on black voters voting for Stallworth. You said Maria has never won a one-on-one race. I said there’s a first time for everything. Not much spin in that.

  19. If Stallworth lives where black voters live, Maria being white shouldn’t be an issue, it shouldn’t come up in this particular race because he should win easily among his black constituents. He rallied the black voters for Joe. Are you telling me he can’t rally them for himself? So Maria’s no threat based on her whiteness? Right? So why is Maria’s whiteness an issue? 1. It’s a White demographic. 2. It’s Black Racism. 3. It’s being used to mask Misogyny. 4. To shine a light on White racism in other districts. It’s one of these four why a white woman’s race would be injected into a race were she is challenging a black man in a predominately black district.

      1. It doesn’t answer why her whiteness is an issue. She has no record, I get that. She barely won her BOE seat. I get that. She was riding the coattail of others for her DTC seat. I get that. She’s done nothing in the black community. I get that. How did this answer my question? My question was Why was Maria’s WHITENESS an issue? Where’s White Privilege? It’s one of the four. If you don’t want to answer it, I get that. You can’t spin your way out. It’s one of the four.

        1. PS Robert, tell me what has Maria done and what kind of relationship she has with the black community. She’s done nothing for the black community. She has no relationship. She’s racist and hates blacks. But it still wouldn’t answer my question why Don make her Whiteness an issue. I’ll modify 4 to include white racism into this district. It would still be one of the four. To repeat the question. Why did DON inject Maria’s whiteness?

          1. Robert, again, what has Maria done? I know you can’t answer that question. Your lack of understanding of American history will keep you in the dark. You know nothing about Bridgeport politics, and you refuse to find out and educated yourself. Instead you get talking points from someone and your mind won’t go past the last four years. Robert, nobody cares about what you say. Your life story is interesting and thanks for sharing, I would hope you would look more into the past about politics, our past can open our future.

          1. Since you failed to answer the question, I will say this. Since race was injected into something that should have been based on Maria’s ability, record and standing in the community, I’ll say racism is to blame. I’ll close it with that. I realized you need to get the last word in so I’ll end it with this and wait patiently for your reply. 🙂

  20. Ron Mackey // Apr 16, 2016 at 3:43 am
    Robert, again, what has Maria done? I know you can’t answer that question. Your lack of understanding of American history will keep you in the dark. You know nothing about Bridgeport politics, and you refuse to find out and educated yourself. Instead you get talking points from someone and your mind won’t go past the last four years. Robert, nobody cares about what you say. Your life story is interesting and thanks for sharing, I would hope you would look more into the past about politics, our past can open our future.

  21. CynthInfante,
    For the record, at the time of that meeting, the only elected position held by Maria was as a member of the BBOE. As such, her constituents were the “22,000 BPS students and parents” and she owed it to them to be at the BBOE meeting and not observing the Town Council elections. And you said nothing of importance was on the agenda? I believe she missed the full discussion on the lack of resources at Harding High School (teachers and textbooks). To me, that’s pretty important. You see, you all twist your message to suit your positions. If that was Andre Baker who walked out you would have questioned his loyalty and dedication to the BOE. I also find it funny MP and supporters are all in on her holding potentially three elected positions at once. In the past Maria has vilified others (Baker, etc.) who dared hold two positions at once. Questioned their loyalty and dedication to the 22K students. And as far as not knowing anything about Maria, Bridgeport is not that big a city, so don’t assume I do not know about anyone. And I have no admiration for someone who cannot simply state her position without the personal insults, attacks, etc. that has been her trademark since she stepped into the political arena as a “parent, not a politician” back in 2009.

      1. Yes, Ron. In regards to leaving the meeting, I’ve tried to copy a series of tweets from CT Post reporter Lambeck from that night (Dec 7th).
        If you cannot attend meeting, she tweets as she goes then follows up with the story in the Post. Her tweets are the raw feed, her stories are more refined. Her tweets state MP left the meeting. After that was the discussion on Harding.
        She then makes reference two more times to Maria not being there and about being at Town Council. The other stuff about others holding more than one office is my recollection from past stories/comments here on OIB (hell, see the comments being made about Bradley now).
        Here is the thing. I do not disagree with them that Bradley and the others should have stayed to hear the parents’ concerns that night. They were elected by those parents and he is the chairman. In a city starved for true parental engagement, they cannot allow their BOE differences to affect the respect due to the parents. But the parents are now splintered based on which BOE member they like. You don’t have this dynamic in towns where the BOE is held accountable by the parents as a whole. When you ran for the BOE, you knew what you were getting. It should not be used as a springboard position to get yourself known or prove yourself to the machine. I don’t know Bradley, but we are all correctly crushing him for leaving that night (and MP is leading the way), but she essentially did the same thing at the meeting back then.

  22. I suggest you review the Regular BBOE agenda online for December 7th. There are only three agenda items.
    A discussion on the Bigelow Grant.
    Recognition, and the approval of the November 23, 2015 minutes, which I could not vote on because I was not a BBOE member in November.

    I am the only BBOE member who actually graduated from Warren Harding High School, therefore I am personally attached to the school. If there were a discussion about Harding it was either discussed during committee reports or added to the agenda.

    Under CGS, ‘local school boards have a fiduciary responsibility to the municipalities’ taxpayers. All 10 of the constituents I met in the City Council chambers were either a BPS parent, taxpayer or both.

    Lifelong Bridgeport is clearly a resident of Black Rock and probably very very close to Joe Larcheveque.

    Both Andre Baker and Dennis Bradley each served on the BBOE about four months before they sought higher office, which clearly shows they are not vested in their responsibility as BOE members.

    I have been actively involved in our public schools non-stop for seven years. I have my responsibilities on the BOE firmly under my belt and am running for state rep so I can take my in-depth knowledge of our BPS and public education to Hartford to advocate for funding and legislation that will work for Bridgeport students, parents and families.

    Apparently the only person who cares I left a meeting that was scheduled on the wrong Monday in December and had no meaningful agenda items on the agenda is you.

    I can only recommend you get over it.


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