Your Chance To Kiss Mario’s Ring

Bridgeport politics is a three-ring circus. OIB friend Steve Krauchick of Doing It Local turned to local comedian Akisha Cassermere to ask probing questions on election day including “the godfather of Bridgeport politics Mario Testa” who reveals the secret to kissing his ring.

Speaking of funny, check out East End activist Wanda Simmons’ snappy rejoinder when asked who else is running for mayor: “Jeff Kohate.” We’re certain that Jeff Kohut will be ticked by his new sobriquet.

Check out Akisha’s interviews in video above.



  1. Those disbelievers on the City Council will learn fast that if they want to get reelected and if they want something pass by the City Council they to will have to Kiss Mario’s Ring.

    Congratulation to Jeff Kohut for getting 27 write-in votes for mayor, even Ethan Book got more votes with 52 votes than Jeff and of course the real spoiler, the other MM who got 8 votes.

  2. Ron, actually Jeff received seven write-in votes. Remember when Maria said she got him twenty ab’s.

    Maria Pereira says:
    November 1, 2019 at 12:00 am
    On point, Jeff!
    Jeff, I have had quite a few voters ask me who I am voting for. I explain I am writing you in and voting for you. I have had about 20 AB voters indicate they were going to vote for you too!

  3. “…Ron, actually Jeff received seven write-in votes. Remember when Maria said she got him twenty ab’s…”

    ” ….Congratulation to Jeff Kohut for getting 27 write-in votes for mayor, even Ethan Book got more votes with 52 votes than Jeff and of course the real spoiler, the other MM who got 8 votes…”

    RON-DON: Now I can say that I was a write-in candidate for Mayor of Bridgeport! If you would like to also be able say that too, I would be happy to help you to create a statement of consent, fill out the correct forms, and mail them to the appropriate person at the CT SOS’s Office… (But you will have to sign your own name — in INK!) 🙂

    1. Jeff, at no time has Don and myself ever attenuate that we wanted to run for anything or to hold or be involve with anything in City government. On the other hand you decided to disrespect the voters of Bridgeport by doing a drive by run for mayor without any dialogue with the black community about their issues and concerns, you had no community meetings to just listen to the voters. You think that because you write all of these position papers that the voters of Bridgeport has seen what you wrote or even understood anything that you wrote. Jeff if you truly want to be the mayor then you need to start right now for the 2023 election.

      I must that I was surprise that you got only 27 votes because Maria Pereira was backing your run for mayor so that had to be good for at least 500 votes from her district alone.

      1. Jeff,

        Please disregard the foolishness of the biggest whiners on OIB. Afterall, that IS what Day and Mackey do.

        You are a Bridgeporter that possesses integrity, knowledge, and are incredibly articulate.

        It takes courage to run for office in Bridgeport and I for one appreciate your efforts.

        Thank you!

        1. Maria, you obviously know nothing about me, maybe you should ask someone before you start running your big mouth about me, in fact I know two people right off the of my head who know me real well who could tell you. Maria, never say to Donald Day and myself about, ” It takes courage.” I’ve serve my City and my country by putting my life on the line, what have you put your life on the line for besides your own selfish wants and needs?

        2. Thanks, Maria! And congratulations to you and Samia on your CC victory!

          But, I’m just having some fun with RON-DON. He can’t be taken seriously — because he never addresses anything in a manner that can be taken seriously…
          RON-DON apparently isn’t able to appreciate either the arcane, nor, in many cases the blatantly obvious, regarding Bridgeport politics, or the people involved, so he creates a reality that he can understand, full of people he can understand, and he works his subjectively-based “reality” from there…
          It’s fun to watch! 🙂

  4. “…Speaking of funny, check out East End activist Wanda Simmons’ snappy rejoinder when asked who else is running for mayor: ‘Jeff Kohate.’ We’re certain that Jeff Kohut will be ticked by his new sobriquet.”

    It is actually strangely flattering, at a level… (But it makes one wonder why Wanda simmers…)

    (Maybe Stephanie can tell us? She disappeared as suddenly as she appeared. Has anyone seen her lately? Did RON-DON meet her for coffee, as offered?…)

    1. Jeff
      Make sure you get a front row seat. The City Council isn’t the BD of Education! I was president of the City Council when Chris was there. The work is done in the Committees. We have 20 Members, let me break it down Jeff we have 4 New members (1) from the 130th (1) from the 131 and (2) from the 138th we have 2 who served on the city council in the past . Everyone else is returning back to the city council. Many of them chaired Major committees which are appointed by the president of the city council.. Our rules allow members to attend all committee meetings, but only those who sit on those committees can vote to move items to the full body for a vote. P.S. The City Council President appoints who chairs committees and who serves on those committees. The Council President also has the power not to appoint a council person to any committees…our council rules give the president that authority. Jeff remember you need 4 member to move anything out of committee and 11 votes depending on how many council persons show up at a council meeting to pass anything. I watched Rick Torres be a long Ranger by him self and I watched many others who couldn’t get things done in their districts because they didn’t understand its about your district and our city never about the individual. Time will tell.

      1. Ernie: Your points about the need for cooperation (versus co-opteration!) to move business on the CC are well-taken and an excellent reminder to all of us about how Democratic bodies are intended to function. And the committee-basis of CC functioning is also an excellent point that many of us might not know, much less keep in mind when we think about the CC. An excellent tutorial by one of Bridgeport’s senior statesmen! Those points should be printed-up and handed out to all citizens attending CC meetings so that they have some clue as to (part of) what they’re watching and listen to during CC meetings…

        That being said; the parliamentary procedures of the CC give the individual CC members quite a bit of opportunity to make their voices heard, move discussions, bring up new business, and challenge points and aspects of procedures that might not be in keeping with prescribed CC procedure, The Freedom of Information Act, and even basic civility… These are areas where the Marias and Carusos of the CC can shake things up and nudge business where it normally might not want to go. These are things that will serve as a democratic breath of fresh air to those of us that don’t attend CC sessions because all that we expect is to experience is an “auctioneer” conducting business in a deliberately unintelligible manner (for the public and less-astute CC members) such that CC decisions are made in an undemocratic manner…

        In any event; your very well-written tutorial on CC function should be distributed to the public… It did serve to sweep some of the cob webs out of my politically-reawakening brain!

        Thanks, Councilman Newton!

  5. LOL, that funny Jeff, Ron nor I have any political aspirations and if we did we would go to someone that has a history of winning to assist with the process. Twenty seven votes isn’t my idea of a winning political campaign, instead it’s just something to do! Jeff, what I am sure absolutely sure of is if Ron or I decided to run we both would get considerably more than 27 votes even if just family or friends wanted to throw away their votes like yours did!

    As to Casper, (Stephanie) you can’t meet a ghost for coffee without the benefit of a Seance and that’s not our thing.

  6. Donald Day,

    I guess if you and Mackey were to decide to run for office, you in the suburbs of course, you would seek out those with a history of “winning.”

    Does that mean you would seek me out? Afterall, Samia and I are the only candidates that challenged the endorsed candidates and won? 🙂

    1. Maria, I had the courage to run for the City Council in the 130th district where Mayor Joe Ganim was living at that time in 1997, in fact I was a member of the Democratic Town Committee starting in 1992. I serve one year as the one of the vice-chair of the DTC while the redistricting lawsuit was being settle and the district lines were redrawn, then I was placed back into the 131th district instead of the 130th district. While I was on the 130th district I voted against Mario Testa for DTC chairman and instead voted for Bill Holden and Danny Roach was my district leader and Joe Gamin was also a member of the DTC in the 130th district. Needless to say that caught hell for my position and vote but it was the right thing to do because there was a unfair balance of how power was being shared with blacks. Maria, running for the City Council took no courage.

      1. Mackey, in your opening you say “… I had the courage to run for the City Council in the 130th District…” And then you close with ” Maria, running for the City Council took no courage.”

        This is a clear contradiction. Was it courageous when you ran for City Council but not courageous when I and others ran for the City Council?


      2. “I had the courage to run for the City Council in the 130th District, as you claim someone would need in order to run,” Maria, running for the City Council took no courage.

    2. Maria,
      You make a good point by indicating that a local slate of independent Democrat candidates, who have become familiar to and with the people of their District through knocking on doors, with enough time spent, and focusing on priority issues can win at the polls, even in the face of some negative stylistic (though not scandalous) static can win office. That has happened in recent years. In 2017 130 and 132 sent such folks to serve. One of them was converted to party dependence and likely irrelevance, while the others served, retired or tried without support after the primary. Are patterns in Bridgeport changing? Time will tell.

  7. Maria, that would be undubitably wrong as we would not choose you under any circumstances. We would choose Ed Gomes, Senator Moore, State Rep Baker or a litany of other Black’s that have been successful in their political pursuits.

    We have always been bridge builders in our pursuit of righteousness for Black’s, Latinos and women in the fire service and while you’ve shown a propensity for getting elected you’ve also shown a propensity to burn bridges. Winning an election is the easiest thing one can do, but getting people to believe in your ideology and helping you accomplish your goals is a bigger endeavor.

    1. Don, here’s a issue about righteousness that has nothing to with race, the fact that in the last 12 years the City of Bridgeport has NOT HIRED ANY FEMALES TO BE FIREFIGHTERS. Mayor Ganim made a big deal about hiring women and showing up in a video to advertise and to encourage women to take the exam and the City had training classes supposedly hire females, the City has a new class of firefighters in training now and there are NO WOMEN IN THAT TRAINING CLASS, AGAIN THERE ARE NO, NONE, NOT ONE SINGLE WOMAN. What the hell is wrong with this picture, the Bridgeport Police department has no problem hiring women but the Fire Department can’t find one. I’ve never heard one word from Maria, the City Council President, no women’s group, no body but that’s okay even though it’s illegal and Bridgeport is getting federal money for hiring and training new firefighters. There’s absolutely nothing in hiring women to be firefighters for Don and myself but it’s the right thing to do.

  8. Robert , in response to your post:

    ” Jeff, the question is what and how huge are the changes “Joe” is going to make? And how big of a pain in the ass is Maria going to be? That, time will tell, JMl. BAM piece out people.”

    It is rumored that Joe is going to replace economic development director, Tom Gill, with Stamford public official and assistant state economic development director, David Kooris — the same David Kooris that was economic development director under Bill Finch, even as he was serving as a Stamford elected official. (No conflict of interest there, Boss!!)

    That means that we are going to move backward on all fronts, with only Gold-Coast-serving/no-tax-benefits development for Bridgeport. We’ll host more workforce housing (at our expense) to support the Gold Coast life style/tax-base, even as we incur more debt and higher taxes in this regard…( Maybe we’ll also get a new dorm on Park Avenue for Sacred Heart University…) Our public safety and schools will decline as the recession hits us next year and we see reductions in state and federal aid, even as joblessness and poverty increase in Bridgeport [but the boat ramp gets built at Steele Point(!) — which might draw a local fishing-skiff here for the grand-opening/ribbon-cutting ceremony…].

    So; by all indications, Bridgeport will continue its decline, along with the State of Connecticut…

    Maria and Samia Suliman will be the bright spots in Bridgeport, whipping the CC into a frenzy twice a month as they use statute and procedural rules to force the proper execution of business by the Council and force the Council to actually carry out a productive legislative function in the “light-of-day” — even as they induce apoplexy into that normally, unaroused body…

    As Lennie has predicted; the Council will experience a stimulus similar to that of the Caruso era, and Bridgeport City Hall I (Lyon Terrace) will become the most popular entertainment venue in the city. (Will G2 try to charge the public to attend these meetings on that premise?! Could be a lot of parking-violation money coming into city coffers too, as residents risk tickets in the mostly no-parking area (not for no reason!) around City Hall!…

    So, Robert; there won’t be too many of the kind of changes that we want to see, except for the procedural, twice-monthly, (dry) proddings that the councilpersons of the 138th administer to the CC… (I’ll be attending, whenever possible!) 🙂

    1. Hope the hell you’re incorrect on that Jeff. There couldn’t be a more useless economic development director than Thomas Gill. Kooris supposedly helped turn around the urban plan of Stamford into what is is today. You don’t have faith he would do that for Bridgeport?

  9. Brother Mackey, you don’t have to try and justify nothing to her as she’s done her homework on both of us and if she found anything that would call into question our integrity or our accomplishments she would have said so long ago. What we’ve done in this city is legendary and without reproach.


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