Community Forum Nov 5 2008 broadcast
Time: 3:13 PM
Guests: Betsy Thomas, Speaker Coach; Kathy Caprino: Life and Career Coach
Thumbs down on three strikes law?
Time: 1:05 PM
Lets just say that if the results of the election were any indication, then the law received a big fat thumbs down.
Was Tuesday’s election also a referendum on a true “three-strikes-and-you’re-out” law?
If it was, the law isn’t as popular as some might think. A majority of the 58 General Assembly candidates who signed a petition supporting a three-strikes law lost on Tuesday. Here’s how it broke down:
In the Senate, 8 of 15 lost their races, while 2 of the 7 winners were uncontested.
In the House, 29 of 43 candidates lost, while just 14 won.
Between the two chambers, about 64 percent of the candidates supporting three strikes lost. But it remains to be seen whether those results are definitive with respect to public support for the law.
“It shows you that issue was a campaign issue, rather than a valid policy issue,” Senate Majority Leader Martin Looney, D-New Haven, said Wednesday.
Although several Republicans, including Mick McLachlan, used the three strikes coalition for political purposes, which included the mayor's chief of staff making a spectacle in from of Danbury City Hall, as well as including his stance on his mail droppings, now Republicans are back-tracking and claiming that it was never a campaing issue.
Sen. Sam Caligiuri, R-Waterbury, who also is chairman of the Three Strikes Now Coalition, says he respectfully disagrees with Looney’s assessment.
“It was never our intention to influence the outcome of races,” Caligiuri said Wednesday. “We used the campaign season to talk about the issue.”
It's amazing that the coalition wasn't called into question for their political activity during the campaign season since it's a 501-3(c) group which purposely injected themselves during the height of the campaign season and politicians (mainly Republicans) used for political purposes.
The Coalition is a nonpartisan, not for profit grass roots organization dedicated to having a "three strikes and you're out" law enacted in Connecticut
But that's for another day...
Was the election a referendum on the law=? Maybe, maybe not. The three strikes law was extremely unpopular on most area of the state with most Republicans who signed on to the "pledge" losing badly, it seems remote that the proposed law will receive any traction.
Also, what really get lost in the translation is what the compromise law does.
Judiciary Committee Co-Chairman Sen. Andrew McDonald, D-Stamford, has said that when the General Assembly reconvenes in January it will evaluate the effectiveness of the legislation it passed last January, largely in response to the Petit murders. McDonald said the legislation passed unanimously by the General Assembly allows judges to double and triple the sentences of career offenders. He said career offenders can have their sentences enhanced up to and including life in prison under the new legislation.
Like I said, give the story your attention as it's worth the read.
Petition: It's time for Democrats to DUMP JOE
Time: 4:29 PM
This is it.
The time is now.
Joe needs to go.
Despite his pledge during the 2006 debates to do everything he could to get a Democrat in the White House in 2008, Lieberman went back on his word.
Despite his glowing comments about Barack Obama back in 2006, and his pledge not to say anything negative about Obama at the Republican National Convention, Lieberman went back on his word.
When word that State Central is considering taking action against Lieberman, he equated the Democratic Party to "Soviets"
Look, it's simple. Lieberman has lied to the people of Connecticut, stabbed the Democratic Party in the back, and openly campaigned against the very person he praised two years earlier.
Now that the elections are over, it's time for members of the Senate Democratic Steering and Outreach Committee AND the members of the Connecticut Democratic State Central Committee to DEAL WITH THE LIEBERMAN PROBLEM ONCE AND FOR ALL.
Please help send a message that it's time to dump Joe NOW.
1: Please sign Firedoglake's petition to the members of the Democratic Steering and Outreach Committee telling them that it's time for Joe to go.
2: PLEASE sign the petition to the members of the Connecticut Democratic State Central Committee asking them to support the pending resolution to censure Joe Lieberman (NOTE: State Central will meet to take up this matter on Dec 17th.
Send a message that Joe is not welcomed in the party...sign the petitions today.
Download the latest verison of Adobe flash
Time: 2:10 PM
The problem is not the site but an outdated version of Adobe Flash most people are still using. Make sure you upgrade your version of Flash (you should be using version 10). You can update the version of Flash on your computer by clicking here.
Time: 12:47 PM
JKs Restaurant 11.06.08 Photo by CTBlogger
Fresh from his victory over David Cappiello, Congressman Chris Murphy visited his adopted home of JKs Restaurant to say thanks to the residents of Danbury who sent him back to Washington for a second term. Accompanying him was another freshman elected official who also was victorious in his re-election bid, State Rep. Jason Bartlett of the 2nd district.
After chatting with customers in the historical restaurant, in between answering questions from reporters, I had a chance to talk to Murphy and Bartlett about their their election victory and the significance of Barack Obama winning the Presidential election. I also asked Congressman Murphy his thoughts on Jim Himes win over Chris Shays.
State Rep. Jason Bartlett:
CT-04: Himes victory makes headlines around the world
Time: 11:47 AM
...and his win is receiving quite of bit of attention in Latin American and around the world.
Democrat Jim Himes has become the first Peruvian-American citizen in winning a seat in the U.S. Congress for Connecticut's 4th District during the recent elections.
Himes, a 42-year-old former Wall Street banker, secured 149,979 votes (51 percent) to defeat his opponent Republican Christopher Shays, who had 136,630 votes (48 percent).
In an interview with Peru's RPP radio news, Himes thanked the Latino community living in Connecticut, especially the Peruvians, Ecuadorians, Mexicans and Puerto Ricans for having voted for him.
"They are proud of giving me their support, because they know that I am a Congress representative who understands well the Latino community," Himes said.
Jim was raised with a deep appreciation for American values. Born in Lima, Peru in 1966 to American parents, Jim spent his first 10 years of his childhood in Peru and Colombia while his father worked for the nonprofit Ford Foundation and for UNICEF.
As an American abroad, Jim grew up fluent in both Spanish and English and was raised with an awareness of the unique position of the United States in the world - a leader in civil liberties, democratic self-government, and the rule of law, and a beacon of hope and economic opportunity for others around the world.
CT Local Politics: 5th CD election analysis
Time: 9:00 AM
Trust me, it's really hard for us bloggers to cover every single race. For instance, I was unable to follow the 2nd CD race as closely as I wanted simply because the district is on the other side of the state. The 1st and 3rd CD were locked races for the incumbents so articles on those races were few and far between. The 4th and 5th races were easier to follow simply because they happened in the Danbury area so I was able to follow the races (and the candidates) more closely and not rely on media reports as much.
That being said, since many are still abuzzed about Cappiello's stunning and resounding defeat in Danbury, I'll offer some additional comments to what Genghis stated about the race later...but make sure to read his analysis as it's really good.
Common Council meeting TONIGHT
Time: 12:33 PM
Due to election night being on a Tuesday, the November Common Council meeting will be held tonight.
Here's what's on the agenda:
1 – COMMUNICATION - BOE – Teachers ContractTwo things to note about tonights agenda:
2 – COMMUNICATION - Appointment to the Lake Kenosia Commission
3 – COMMUNICATION - Appointment to the Environmental Impact Commission
4 – COMMUNICATION - Donations to the Department of Elderly Service
5 – COMMUNICATION - Donation to Traffic Unit – Engineering Department
6 – COMMUNICATION - Donations to the Fire Department
7 – COMMUNICATION - Danbury-Bethel Interlocal Utilities Agreement
8 – COMMUNICATION - Request for Sidewalk Easement – Osborne Street
9 – RESOLUTION - Acquisition of Property – Westside Sewer Interceptor
10 – RESOLUTION - Acquisition of Property – Pocono Lane/Mountainview Road
11 – RESOLUTION - Public Safety Interoperable Communications Grant
12 – RESOLUTION - Before and After School Program
13 – RESOLUTION - Fire Department Grant – State Farm
14 - RESOLUTION - 2009 Comprehensive DUI Enforcement Program
15 - REPORT - Fire Hydrant – 55 State Street
16 - REPORT - Sanitary Sewer Extension – (Short, Lombardi and Concord Streets)
17 – REPORT - Sanitary Sewer Extension – Various Projects
18 – REPORT & ORDINANCE – Amendment to Code of Ordinances 19-4
19 – AD HOC REPORT - Exchange of Land - Pocono Lane
20 – AD HOC REPORT - Historical Property Study
21 – AD HOC REPORT & ORDINANCE - Removal of Private Debris
22 – DEPARTMENT REPORTS – Police, Fire, Health-Housing & Welfare, Dream Homes, Public Works, Permit Center, Unit, Elderly Services, Library
1. Item 10 of the agenda centers around a long, ongoing traffic problem on Pocono Lane. For those who don't knwo where this street is located, it's the street right next to Fast Freddie's off Exit 8 and trust me, those residents have a very difficult time pulling out of that street because of the traffic that comes off the interstate.
You can watch video footage of the public meeting for the proposal to do something about Pocono Lane by clicking here.
2. Item number 21 caused a rather heated exchange during the ad-hoc committee meeting. For those who don't know, the topic centers on who is responsible for snow that is plowed from one's driveway into the street. As WE ALL KNOW, plowers are notorious for plowing client's snow into the street which causes a hazard. The city has decided to hand out a fine to those who do this annoying practice BUT there is disagreement when it comes to how should receive the fine: the homeowner or the contractor.
Personally, I think the person responsible for placing the snow into the street is responsible, in which case it is the contractor and NOT the homeowner. Ultimately, the ad-hoc voted in favor of punishing the homeowner for the contractor's negligence...but not without some heated discussion. You can watch footage from the ad-hoc committee meeting by clicking here.
Anti-immigrant measures in the 2008 election
Time: 11:36 AM
Here's a quick recap:
- Oregon Measure 58, which would have prohibited teaching non-English-speaking public school students in a language other than English for more than two years, failed. The proposition was widely opposed by teachers' groups and immigrant rights advocates.
- Missouri did pass a mostly meaningless "English only" measure which states that English is the official language for government meetings. This will not produce any changes to the current status quo.
- A final measure, Arizona's Prop 202, failed to pass. It would have weakened the existing employer sanctions, but added penalties for ID theft against undocumented workers.
- In an example of a race where immigration drove the debate, Lou Barletta, the staunchly anti-immigrant mayor of Hazelton, Pennsylvania, lost his challenge to incumbent Democratic Congressman Paul Kanjorski, demonstrating the ineffectiveness of his anti-immigrant platform for voters interested in real solutions to the increasingly gloomy economic outlook.
Now that we have a new president in Barack Obama, there will be some rather interesting changes...including a new head of the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement. Now that the head of ICE, Michael Brown clone Julie Myers, will be replaced, and a large amount of Latinos pulling the lever for Obama, you can count on pressure to placed on the new administration to revise the policies of ICE raids across the country.
Now that most of the Republican xenophobes in Congress were given their pink slip, and the once Grand Old Party has shrunk to non-existence in D.C., maybe common sense can be used to pass an immigration reform bill once and for all.
Time: 4:50 PM
There is some confusion over the results of the races. It seems like some media reports have the wrong numbers and I'm trying to sort things out.
For instance, here's what WTNH is reporting for the 2nd district race between Bartlett and O'Brien...
Melanie O'Brien: 4,994 (50% percent)
Jason Bartlett: 5,015 (50 percent)
Precincts Reporting: 100% 7 of 7 Precincts
This is completely false as I was at the Danbury Democratic headquarters when the results came in and I saw the numbers myself.
Here's the numbers I have. Again, these numbers were reported into Danbury Headquarters and were from the tape off the machines:
Danbury: O'Brien (R)=1454, Bartlett (D)=2239 O'Brien(I)=128. (+657 Bartlett)
Bethel: O'Brien(R)=2368, Bartlett(D)=2790, O'Brien(I)=252. (+170 Bartlett)
Redding: O'Brien(R)=781, Bartlett(D)=937, O'Brien(I)=38. (+118 Bartlett)
TOTAL: O'Brien(R+I)=5021, Bartlett(D)=5966
Bartlett wins by 945 votes.
I'm going to work and get the numbers from all the other races and I'll post them later. The SoS should have all the official results from all the races this afternoon as required by law.
UPDATE: Here's the totals as of 4:45PM from the Sec. of State's office. I'll try to get a breakdown of the Danbury results for each ward tomorrow.
Click here to see results from all the State Senate races (pdf).
Click here to see results from all the State Rep. races (pdf).
Time: 2:11 PM
Yesterday was a banner day for Democrats in Danbury and throughout the nation. Although we witnessed something I never thought I would see in my lifetime, there were a number of memorable moments in Hat City, most notably:
- Danbury native David Cappiello losing decisively losing to Chris Murphy on his home turf proving without a shadow of a doubt that lawn signs are meaningless (BTW: Please pick up your ILLEGAL lawn signs and restore Danbury's landscape)
- Danbury native Mike McLachlan's losing the hometown vote to Duane Perkins by a large margin.
- HUGE landside victories by Joe Taborsak and Bob Godfrey
- Bob Melillo's impressive showing against Jan Geigler. Although he lost, his performance was better than that of Bernie Gallo in 06, which is good for a person who's relatively new when it comes to running for office.
- Jason Bartlett's win over Bob Burke's clone in every area of the 2nd district
Although there were victories and defeats, overall the Democrats have plenty to be proud of as they increased their voting registration percentage and ran an effective campaign that focused on the accomplishments for the community.
Below are video clips from last night that I was unable to show during last night's live video stream.
Bob Godfrey (110th Dist):
Joe Taborsak (109th Dist):
Bill Melillo (138th Dist):
Duane Perkins (26th Dist):
Final remarks from DTC Chairman Joe DaSilva:
The First Family (and a comment)
Time: 7:51 AM
Eugene Robinson, WashPost (11/04/08):
Whoever wins this election, I understand what Barack Obama meant when he said his faith in the American people had been "vindicated" by his campaign's success. I understand what Michelle Obama meant, months ago, when she said she was "proud of my country" for the first time in her adult life. Why should they be immune to the astonishment and vertigo that so many other African-Americans are experiencing? Why shouldn't they have to pinch themselves to make sure they aren't dreaming, the way that I do?
I know there's a possibility that the polls are wrong. I know there's a possibility that white Americans, when push comes to shove, won't be able to bring themselves to elect a black man as president of the United States. But the spread in the polls is so great that the Bradley effect wouldn't be enough to make Obama lose; it would take a kind of "Dr. Strangelove effect" in which voters' hands developed a will of their own.
I'm being facetious but not unserious. In my gut, I know there's a chance that the first African-American to make a serious run for the presidency will lose. But that is precisely what's new, and, in a sense, unsettling: I'm talking about possibility, not inevitability.
For African-Americans, at least those of us old enough to have lived through the civil rights movement, this is nothing short of mind-blowing. It's disorienting, and it makes me see this nation in a different light.
You see, I remember a time of separate and unequal schools, restrooms and water fountains -- a time when black people were officially second-class citizens. I remember moments when African-Americans were hopeful and excited about the political process, and I remember other moments when most of us were depressed and disillusioned. But I can't think of a single moment, before this year, when I thought it was within the realm of remote possibility that a black man could be nominated for president by one of the major parties -- let alone that he would go into Election Day with a better-than-even chance of winning.
Let me clarify: It's not that I would have calculated the odds of an African-American being elected president and concluded that this was unlikely, it's that I wouldn't even have thought about such a thing.
African-Americans' love of country is deep, intense and abiding, but necessarily complicated. At its hour of its birth, the nation was already stained by the Original Sin of slavery. Only in that past several decades has legal racism been outlawed and casual racism made unacceptable, at least in polite company. Millions of black Americans have managed to pull themselves up into mainstream, middle-class affluence, but millions of others remain mired in poverty and dysfunction.
A few black Americans broke through into the highest echelons of American society. Oprah Winfrey became the most powerful woman in the entertainment industry by appealing to an audience that is mostly white. Richard Parsons, Stanley O'Neal and others became alpha males in the lily-white world of Wall Street. Through superhuman skill and unbending will, Tiger Woods came to dominate a sport long seen as emblematic of white privilege.
Along came Barack Obama, a young man with an unassailable resume and a message of post-racial transformation. Initially, a big majority of African-Americans lined up behind his major opponent in the Democratic primaries, Hillary Clinton. The reason was simple: In the final analysis, white Americans weren't going to vote for the black guy. Better to go with the safe alternative.
But an amazing thing happened. In the Iowa caucuses, white Americans voted for the black guy. That's the moment Obama was referring to when he said his faith in the American people was vindicated. For me, it was the moment when the utterly impossible became merely unlikely. That's a huge, fundamental change, and it launched a sequence of events over the subsequent months that made me realize that some things I "knew" about America were apparently wrong.
Even if John McCain somehow prevails, that won't change the fact that Obama won all those primaries, or that he won the nomination, or that he raised more money than any candidate in history, or that he rewrote the book on how to run a presidential campaign. Nothing can change the fact that so many white Americans entrusted a black American with their hopes and dreams.
We can all have a new kind of pride in our country.
Election day LIVE BLOG
Time: 7:12 AM
I'll bring reports from the polling places throughout the Danbury area as well as add regular posts within this thread.
I CAN USE YOUR HELP!!!! I want ot hear from you about your voting experience. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or drop a comment and I'll make sure it add it to the thread! When you give me your report, make sure to tell me your voting location as well as the number on the counter when you cast your ballot.
Polls open at 6 AM and close at 8 PM.
If you don't know where you polling place is located, this tool will help you out. Just plug in your address and it will find you voting location...
9:45 McLachlan loses Danbury by 1,000+ votes but holds on to the other towns and it seems like he's beat Perkins (although it's not official yet).
Jason Bartlett KILLS O'Brien by a WIDE margin. KILLS her in Bethel by a HUGE margin...HUGE! Guess Burke's flier didn't work after all.
The headquarters is closing shop so this live blog is coming to a close. Once again, UStream let me down but I did videotape everything that happened here. I'll be going to the celebration on Main Street and grabbing interviews from everyone later.
THANKS AGAIN FOR EVERYONE WHO HAS VISITED THE SITE. As of 9:49, this site has received over 1,200 visits which is close to a record.
I'll have more stuff up online either later tonight or first thing in the morning. Come back to the site for more updates.
9:25: The UStream server is down (surprise there). I'm videotaping everything that is happening here at the headquarters and I'll post it via YouTube later. If UStream comes back up, I'll broadcast live.
9:20: Bill Milello just gave his speech and it appears that Jan Geigler is going to win re-election.
9:12: Live video stream is down...working on getting it back up now.
BREAKING NEWS!!!!! CHRIS MURPHY BEAT DAVID CAPPIELLO IN DANBURY BY A LARGE MARGIN!!!!!
Bob Godfrey wins in the 110th
Joe Taborsak wins in the 109th
7:15 Okay, I'm out the door and traveling to the Danbury DTC headquarters. Hopefully, I'll be able to set up a live video feed.
While packing things up, I took a trip down memory lane and looked live blog I did for the 2006 election. Pretty good stuff...
NOTE: Reports are in that the voting turnout is now over 68 percent. Surge of people are voting now...
7:10: HatCityBLOG has received over 700 hits as of 7:00 PM. Thanks to all the readers and people reporting back on their experiences in the area.
7:00: You might have tried to click on some of the videos here and nothing happened. Due to bandwidth problems, YouTube is asking people with director accounts to downgrade their videos to low resolution. I'll upgrade the videos back to high resolution tomorrow but you shoul dbe able to view the clips now.
6:40: More exit polling data (NATIONAL:CNN)
Here's what CNN is reporting...
The Economy: 62 percent
Iraq: 10 percent
Terrorism: 9 percent
Healthcare: 9 percent
Amazingly, more than a quarter of voters -- 27 percent -- indicated that they had been contacted by the Obama campaign.
A more progressive America: A full 51 percent of voters say they believe government should be doing more to fix the country's problems, while just 43 percent say the country should be doing less.
Fear: 30 percent of voters are scared of the prospect of a McCain victory, while 23 percent are scared of the prospect of an Obama victory.
Again, I caution you to take this exit data with a grain of salt...remember '04!
6:30: VIDEO INTERVIEW
One on One with Joe Taborsak, State Rep 109th
I'll be honest, I'm a big fan of Joe Taborsak. Of all the state reps in the area, Taborsak is that rare breed of politician who works 100 percent for his district. His accomplishments as a Freshman in Hartford is well noted in his area and I reall y don't have the time to go down the list.
I've followed his career in politics starting with his 2006 campaign against the former
Today, I caught up with Taborsak at Broadview and did this interview. Lets just say that in this interview, Joe was a bit more relaxed than in the ones I did two years ago (here, and here).
6:00: Here's my small video report on a couple of polling locations in the Danbury area.
5:20: Here's a conversation I had with Chris Bigelow (a.k.a. Genghis Conn of Connecticut Local Politics) regading the races in the Danbury area. Chris told me a while back to publish this but I never got around to doing it.
Although the 109 was somewhat competitive, this was only because Joe Taborsak's mother, former State Rep Lynn Taborsak, is highly involved in the immigration battle in the area and the Republicans, who smelled blood, tried to make it a political issue and by tagging Joe Taborsak to his mother. The State GOP (smelling blood) pumped tens of thousand of dollars into the race but they had a weak candidate (Gregg Seabury) who lost rather badly.
Wisely, Taborsak is governing like his predecessor, the great Lew Wallace who always listened to the people in his district and worked on legislation based on his community's concerns. To make a long story short, I think the Republicans all but gave up on this seat this time around with Ted Farah.
Now look, I know Ted as we went to college together and he's a super nice guy. That being said, I really haven't seen him ANYWHERE on the campaign trail (festivals, events, door knocking)...instead I only really seen him at the Zoning meetings (he's the chairman of the committee in Danbury). His mailers were the basic generic stuff (gas/energy prices, open space, yadda, yadda, yadda) with no real substance when it comes to the concerns of the district. When it comes down to it, Farah didn't have the drive Seabury had back in '06 and Taborsak is well liked in his district.
Taborsak wins rather easily and by a larger margin than in '06.
In 2006, the 138th was a rather competitive race because Bernie Gallo (former Danbury DTC chairman) really worked his tail off. In my opinion, the new candidate (Bill Mellilo) hasn't worked as hard as Gallo did on '06. Although Geigler didn't work that much either, she has the advantage of living in a rather safe Republican district. Maybe if Melillo would have went negative by pointing out Geigler's voting record, he'd had a chance...I don't think he did enough in that area.
Milello is a REAL nice guy but I'll ave to hand the 138th to Geigler.
This district is rather interesting. Jason Bartlett has gained a reputation (fair or unfair) of being considered a person who likes seeing his name in print. Republicans HATE him with a passion in Bethel (don't get me started about the silliness in Bethel).
The First Selectman of Bethel, Bob Burke, really screwed things by letting his emotions regarding Bartlett get the best of him. He did a REALLY stupid thing by getting in the middle of the race with what has to be one of the most idiotic fliers I've ever seen. In this ridiculous flier (which I'm positive is 99.99999999 ILLEGAL based on the new campaign law in Connecticut which bars town committees from putting out negative hitpieces on an opponent) Burke bashed Bartlett for a host of issues that either A:) Have nothing to do with Bartlett's district or B:) Centered around issues that could have been resolved if Burke utilized the Small Town Economic Assistance Program....a program Bartlett voted in favor for WHILE the Bethel's other State Rep. (and whose district has the problems that was pointed out in Burke's flier against Bartlett), Republican David Scribner voted against. The flier generated a HUGE amount of negative press and turned the race into a contest between Burke and Bartlett as opposed to Bartlett and his opponent.
The latest round of silliness from Burke surrounds 500,000 Bartlett was able to earmark for improvements to Bethel. According to the First Selectman (Bob Burke), he claims that Bartlett NEVER talked to him about the earmark and has only met with him once (for 29 minutes). The problem with this is there is a video tape showing that Burke refused to allow Bartlett to be placed on the Selectman's agenda to about the money (although Barlett was originally on the agenda). There is not enough time in the day to go into this subject...I'll have to tackle that issue in Bethel later.
Bartlett's challenger (O'Brien) hasn't really hasn't made an impact on this race outside the controversy from Burke's flier. She really hasn't campaigned outside of Bethel until a few weeks ago and her handling of the situation regarding the smear flier was disappointing to say the least. In fact, in all the races I'm watching across the state, O'Brien is BY FAR the most inexperienced candidate I've seen.
Here's what O'Brien said when she had a chance to distance herself from Burke's nonsense:O'Brien and Bartlett debated at the Redding Community Center last week and, of course, Bartlett brought up the flyer, to which O'Brien replied, "Well, Jason, as you know, we can't control everybody, and it's really hard to try."
Afterwards, I caught O'Brien outside. She never returned my calls for comment. She acknowledged this and wished the flyer questions would stop. I asked if she would finally denounce her party's conduct and she countered with, "I looked up the word in the dictionary..."
Here's a video clip from the debate when she was confronted about the flier:
When I heard say that she couldn't control everyone on her campaign AND utter those "well I looked up denounce in the dictionary" remark, it was crystal clear to me that we're dealing with a candidate who has a screw loose. To add more fuel on the fire, a member of O'Brien's campaign created this really silly attack site on Bartlett which was exposed in a News-Times article, thus again generating a batch of bad press for O'Brien.
If that wasn't bad enough, when it comes down to issues that are plaguing the 2nd district, you be hard pressed to find out where O'Brien stood on ANY issue. I had the opportunity to interview O'Brien on local access show where I asked her some rather easy questions about issues in the 2nd district. Although I gave her every chance imaginable, she wouldn't take a stance on anything...ANYTHING.
The most remarkable part was when I brought up the transportation problem in Bethel...most notably the Bethel Train station and the Metro-North line. Now, EVERYONE in Bethel knows that the rail service is a real issue because many people who the service so I thought this should be an easy subject for O'Brien since she lives in Bethel. I asked her would she pursue going after the DOT and join the other State Rep/Senators whose are trying to get that particular line improved and she stated that she wouldn't commit one way or the other...ALTHOUGH the DOT has been dragging their feet in regards to the rail service for at least the last ten years. In fact, the DOT wanted to close the rail service down, which would have had a HUGE negative impact on Bethel. Thankfully, because of bi-partisan support from all the representatives along the Danbury Line (Ridgefield, Danbury, Wilton, etc) the rail was saved and is being used BIGTIME. In a nutshell, O'Brien should have seen that softball coming a mile away and had an answer for that subject. Instead of saying she'll fight to improve that rail line (that's used ALL THE TIME IN BETHEL), O'Brien did what she always did throughout the campaign...offer no solution.
In conclusion, when it comes to politics, they always say that you have to show the voters that you stand for something and in the case of O'Brien, all I've seen is that she stands no nothing more than being a symbol of the anger directed towards Bartlett via Burke and the Bethel Republican Party. Now, contrary to the belief of Burke, ProBethel chairman Bob Crnic (don't get me started with him as there's not enough time to talk about his dirty hand in this race), and goon squad Bethel GOP, Bartlett has done some good things for his district and the city of Danbury. Just about everyone agrees that his work on the CT Film festival was great (he secured money for the event which in turn helped the City of Danbury) and his work on Lyme Disease is noted in areas such as Redding (where he is from).
Bartlett should win but never underestimate the wacky world of Bethel politics.
You're right when it comes to this district, the Democrat is in a REAL tough spot seeing that Brookfield leans HEAVILY Republican.
Although Stevenson is a good guy, I think it's safe to say that this seat will stay red and Scribner comes off with the win.
I'll be brief...Godfrey wins. Nuff said.
The Danbury Republicans put all their eggs in the basket with the McLachlan campaign but, here's where things get interesting.
This election is unlike any other with the Obama factor. In order for Duane Perkins to win, he needs a big turnout for people wanting to vote for Obama and pray that this trickles down to the other races. Since Chris Murphy is a popular congressman, and the fact that people who will vote for Obama will probably vote for Murphy, there is a chance that Perkins will have an advantage when it comes to the wave effect. The problem here is that McLachlan is rather well known seeing that he's Mayor Boughton's number two guy and he's did a good job canvasing the area with lit drops (although, here also, they didn't really have much to say and were all rather vague.
I don't know if your going to find anyone who can predict this race...I think you'll have to look at the voter turnout in the areas of Danbury that lean Democrat first and see if people come out to vote. Hell, I have no fucking idea on this race...it can really go either way. I'd wish they had debates so people could have gotten a better idea about these two guys. Whoever wins will have to work their asses off to keep their seat come 2010 because the other side will be gunning for the seat come the next go-around.
Well, that's basically I'll I'm going to share in regards to my conversation with other bloggers in the country about the races in the Danbury area. I talked about other races but it's kind of out of the realm of this site.
5:10: Took a few minutes to blog on the News-Times site and I was asked why I think the race for the 5th CD was going to go for Murphy over Cappiello. I was emailing back and forth with other blogger across Connecticut and the country about the races in the state and I'll share what I said about all the races (including the State Rep/State Senate contests later...
5:00: First NATIONAL exit polls are coming in via CNN. The economy tops the list of concerns at 62 percent with everything else around 9 to 10 percent. Since people feel more confident with Obama when it come to the economy, that isn't good news for McCain BUT remember the exit polls of '04 when everything was looking good for Kerry...
4:20: Sources informed me that the turnout thus far for Danbury is already over 50 percent...and the evening rush hasn't happened yet.
Just voted in the 3rd ward and if I'm correct, the counter on the optical scanner read 2870 (I think).
4:15: Did an interview with State Rep. Joe Taborsak as well as an interview with State Rep. Jason Bartlett. Going to see if I can grab Duane Perkins and Bob Godfrey later tonight before the polls close.
I'll be live blogging from Danbury Democratic Headquarters as the results come in and I'll probably wrap up this portion of the live blog around 9:00 PM. I'm skipping the Murphy victory party in Waterbury (notice how I called it a VICTORY party) since all signs indicate that Murphy is going to basically crush Cappiello. Instead, I'm going to switch gears and cover the state races (on My Left Nutmeg) starting with one of the hottest races in the country...the race in the 4th CD between Chris Shays and Jim Himes.
I'll place a call to Ideas at Work and Beyond host Marty Heiser and get the rundown on the races in Ridgefield (111 between John Frey and Di Masters and the State Senate race in the 24th between John Hartwell and Toni Boucher).
4:10: Noticed something rather interesting regarding the Republican wall standers. If you notice NOT ONE poll stander is holding a McCain/Palin sign. NOT ONE.
It's bad enough the Republicans are too afraid to put the word "Republican" on their lawn signs, now they don't want to be associated with McCain/Palin and they're running away from the top of the ticket?
I guess that 25+ point lead Obama has over McCain is freaking them out a bit...
2:35: Re-loaded and laptop is fully re-charged. Heading back on the road again. Going to concentrate on doing interviews with voters and candidates. I can blog via my cell phone but that's always been a pain in the ass. Luckily, I know of several WiFi locations around town so updating the site shouldn't be that bad.
...gotta remember to ask my wife for a 3G card for Christmas.
2:25: Received this update from the Sec. of State office on turnout thus far across the State:
Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz is reporting that voter turnout has been incredibly strong across Connecticut with only minor problems at the polls.
Connecticut ’s 883 polling places will be open until 8:00PM this evening. Under state law any voter in line at the polls by 8:00PM will be allowed to vote.
“Polls across Connecticut are officially open,” said Bysiewicz. It is time to vote for our next president, representatives in Congress and the state legislature as well as registrar of voters. There are also two constitutional questions are on the top of the ballot and many towns have budgetary and charter revision questions. Make your voice heard and vote.”
Bysiewicz continued: “Turnout across the state has been very strong so far. It is possible that by the close of the polls record numbers of Connecticut residents will have cast ballots in this historic election. First time voters should take to the polls either a current and valid photo identification that shows your name and address; or present a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows your name and address.”
Secretary Bysiewicz is reminding voters that although no one can be prevented from voting if they wear a campaign button or shirt to the polls, Connecticut General Statutes Section 9-236 prohibits solicitation on behalf of any candidate or question within 75 feet of any polling place. This would prevent an individual from wearing a campaign button, t-shirt or hat into the polling place. However, once the individual removes the button or article of clothing from plain sight, the individual would be allowed to enter the polls and to vote. Once the individual leaves the polling place and the 75 foot restricted area, they could again wear the button or article of clothing.
“We want to make sure that voters are properly informed of their rights,” said Bysiewicz. “In interpreting the law, we also want to ensure that polling places remain neutral zones where voters can go and vote their conscience free of real or perceived intimidation. We understand that many voters feel passionate about the candidates they support and will want to express their opinions through their attire. This expression is protected by the Constitution; however it must be limited to areas outside the 75’ boundary for the polling place.”
Secretary Bysiewicz is encouraging voters to visit www.Vote-EZ-CT.com to learn more about acceptable forms of identification or to help locate their polling place.
Estimated Voter Turnout as of 10:30AM
Deep River 28%
East Granby 34%
East Haddam 29%
East Hampton 25%
East Hartford 26%
East Haven 19%
East Lyme 28%
New Britain 12%
New London 28%
New Haven 30%
West Hartford 40%
2:10: FIELD REPORT
Just got a call from the Secretary of State's office asking if everything worked out in terms of myself getting access to the polling places (read my 1:00 PM post on my problems at Broadview School). Again, big thanks to the SoS office for helping things out...I think it was a VERY smart move for Mary Ann Doran to re-think her interpretation of sec 9-236 of the elections law pertaining to the media as the last thing she needed on a busy day like today is for me to hit the nuclear button and having her get a phone call from the Sec. of State asking her what the hell is going on.
1:45: Here are some photos of polling places from around Danbury today.
Park Ave School (110, 2, 26) @ 12:00
Danbury DTC Headquarters
War Memorial (Dist 109, 110, 2, 26) @ 11:00 AM
Broadview School (Dist 109, 26) @ 10:00 AM
BETHEL: Stony Hill Fire House (Dist 107, 26) @ 9:30 AM
Shelter Rock School (Dist 109, 110, 26) @ 9:15 AM
1:20: Got a report that the turnout so far city wide is a little over 40 percent (as of aprox 12:00). Don't have an update on the turnout based on districts...hoping to get that info later.
1:00: Phew. Just hit every polling place in Danbury and I'm exhausted. Talked to all the monitors about how things are going and everything seems to be running smoothly. The biggest problem was over-voting which resulted in the machine rejecting your ballot. From everyone I talked to, seniors and people voting for the first time were the major violators of over-voting.
Monitors at all the polling places in Danbury said that the lines for people waiting to vote were at it's heaviest during the early morning (6-7 am) but things are at a nice and steady pace now and they think things will pick back up during the late afternoon/evening.
Had a little problem at Broadview School in terms of validating my media credentials with one of the monitors (and you wouldn't believe who that person was). The whole thing was rather silly seeing that I've been doing this for the last five years and I'm rather familiar with the law but to make a long story short, I had a little chit-chat with Mary Ann Doran about what's considered "media" and, contrary to her opinion, NO WHERE in the Connecticut State law (sec 9-236) does it state that one has to be a part of the "mainstream" media in order to take photographs at polling places.
After having a talk with her, I covered my bases by making a rather easy phone call with the good people at the Secretary of State's office...who were rather baffled over Doran's interpretation of the law (big thanks to SoS Attorney Ted Bromely).
In short, after talking to Doran and calling the attorney at the SoS office, surprisingly, things were a-okay. Hell, I live for controversy so it wasn't a big deal and I even the monitor who originally questioned me seemed to be just following orders. I guess if someone in this city doesn't give me some level of drama, then I know I'm not working hard enough.
I'll have photos, video, and some interviews up shortly.
11:20: I'm heading back out the door. Be sure to check out the live-blogging happening at The News-Times site.
Keep posting your reports!
11:15: FIELD REPORT
Got word that as of 10:00 AM 24 percent of voters have casted their vote in the 110th Dist while 30 percent have casted their votes in the 138th.
More reports later...
11:00: FIELD REPORT
Here's a brief report on what's happening. I'll post photos and video later.
(6:30) Pembroke School
Parking lot FULL and there was a large line at the entrance. Audio interview with one voter fill be posted later. Counter unavailable right now.
(8:45) Danbury High
Steady stream but not at all crowded (and I parked beside the gym and hiked in assuming lines and no available parking!)I was voter 987.
(9:30) Shelter Rock School.
Parking lot full. Steady flow of people casting ballots. Workers said that the turnout has been heavy as opposed to previous elecitons. No word on counter.
(10:00) Stony Hill Fire House (Bethel)
Steady flow of people, parking lot full. Workers said that earlier in the day that the line snaked out the building. Problems with parking earlier in the day with people having to park across the street. Counter as of 10:00AM=987.
(10:30) Broadview School
Parking lot FULL. Small line at the entrance of the polling station. Plenty of voting booths. Counter as of 10:30AM=1897
7:30: Regular post
MURPHY MOCKING CAPPIELLO IS LIKE A CAT PLAYING WITH A BALL OF YARN
It's a pretty fair conclusion to state that David Cappiello doesn't have a chance in hell when it comes to winning his election. He's run one of the most ridiculous campaigns imaginable opting to place thousands of lawn signs around the Danbury area (hmm, I thought you lived in Danbury) instead of actually doing serious campaigning. Cappiello offered NO INSIGHT into how he would deal with ANY issue if elected opting instead to criticize Murphy about the latest subject that made headlines at the time.
What was MOST insulting were Cappiello's laughable commercials. From STEALING my photos for use in his ad without attribution, to his incredible claim that the people used in his ad were "ordinary" people from the 5th district (hmm, maybe it's me but I don't recount seeing ONLY WHITE PEOPLE on the corner of West and Main as is suggested in Cappiello's first ad...oh, I get it, having minorities would piss off Cappiello's anti-immigrant base), Cappiello's ads mirror the candidate...NO message, NO substance.
Oh WFSB's Face the State, during the interview between Murphy and Cappiello the subject of ads came up. As Cappiello did his usual B.S. attack, Murphy gave him the smackdown mocking Danbury's native son for not even getting the endorsement of the Danbury News-Times. FYI: For the exception of the Waterbury-Republican (an extreme right-leaning paper which has NEVER endorsed a Democrat picked Cappiello? Shocking!) EVERY single major newspaper in the 5th CD endorsed Murphy over Cappiello. EVERY single newspaper...
6:50 AM: Reports of massive lines at Pembroke School. Parking lot full (Ward 2, Dist 109, 138, 26).
6:30 AM: Sec. of State Susan Bysiewicz issued this statement
"This is it – the polls in Connecticut are now officially open," said Bysiewicz. It is time to vote for our next President, Representatives in Congress and the state legislature as well as registrar of voters. There are also two constitutional questions on the ballot and many towns have budgetary and charter revision questions. Make your voice heard and vote."
A surge in new voter registrations has pushed the total number of registered voters in Connecticut to over 2,097,000 –the highest such figures in state history. Specifically, since January 1st of this year, nearly 300,827 Connecticut residents have become newly registered voters.
In October, more than 134,000 new voters have registered for the November general election. The total number of registered voters in Connecticut is 2,097,635. The largest group of registered voters in Connecticut is unaffiliated, accounting for 883,274 voters. There are 779,784 registered Democrats and 427,020 registered Republicans.
"Record numbers of voters are going to head to the polls today," said Bysiewicz. "Voters should be prepared. First time voters should take to the polls either a current and valid photo identification card that shows your name and address; or a present copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows your name and address."
Secretary Bysiewicz is also reminding voters that although no one can be prevented from voting if they wear a campaign button or shirt to the polls, Connecticut General Statutes Section 9-236 prohibits solicitation on behalf ofany candidate or question within 75 feet of any polling place. This would prevent an individual from wearing a campaign button, t-shirt or hat into the polling place. However, once the individual removes the button or article of clothing from plain sight, the individual would be allowed to enter the polls to vote. Once the individual leaves the polling place and the 75 foot restricted area, they could again wear the button or article of clothing.
"We want to make sure that voters are properly informed of their rights," said Bysiewicz. "In interpreting the law, we also want to ensure that polling places remain neutral zones where voters can go and vote their conscience free of real or perceived intimidation. We understand that many voters feel passionate about the candidates they support and will want to express their opinions through their attire. This expression is protected by the Constitution; however it must be limited to areas outside the 75 foot boundary of the polling place."
Secretary Bysiewicz is encouraging voters to visit www.www.Vote-EZ-CT.com to learn more about acceptable forms of identification or to help locate their polling place.
Time: 3:47 PM
Throughout his laughable campaign, Cappiello has continuously side stepped directly answering any questions regarding his ties to Galante. For those who don't know, Cappiello was one of three elected officials (the others being former State Senator Lou DeLuca and Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton) who accepted illegally funneled campaign contributions from Galante. In Cappiello's case, he accepted 15,000 from the mobster for his State Seanate PAC and spent 202 at Danbury wine and liquor to thank Galante with "bottles of wine or champagne." During the plea bargain agreement, Galante plead guilty to one charge....giving illegal contributions to Cappiello.
There are many questions still remaining regarding these contributions, including (but not limited) to the following:
- Votes he and Senator DeLuca casted that favored Galante's business
- What Cappiello said to the FBI when he questioned about the contributions
- Why was he (as well as Boughnton and DeLuca) served a subpoenas in the Galante case
In his latest deflection, when questioned about his tied to Galante on WNPR's "Where We Live," Cappiello spewed out a laundry list of misleading statements and outright lies such as so-called "glowing" articles Cappiello said the Danbury News-Times wrote about Galante and stating that he didn't know Galante was going to be convicted of a federal crime ALTHOUGH in a letter which was presented in court, Cappiello admitted to knowing that Galante did time in jail for tax evasion). What I considered the last straw was Cappiello having the audacity to point to LEGAL contributions Galante made to Chris Murphy and questioned why Murphy didn't give back the money donated to him.
It was at this point where I'd had enough and decided to call into the show and confront Cappiello on his misleading claim. Thankfully, CT-N videotaped the interview...and here's what happened.
I'll have more on the misleading nonsense the spewed out of Cappiello's mouth during his campaign including his flip-flop/election gimmick regarding his "pledge" not to accept donations from PACs.
Murphy Cappiello debate breakdown
Time: 2:30 PM
At last week's debate, David Cappiello made such as ass out of himself that it wouldn't do justice to post the video footage in it's entirety.
No, no...because of the level of bullshit that flowed out of Cappiello's mouth, it best that I call him out on every misleading/lying statement Danbury's native son made.
I broke the debate down into clips based on the questions and I'll outline EVERY SINGLE idiotic thing Cappiello said. For each video clip I post, I'll move this post to the top of the page.
WE DO NOT ENDORSE THIS CANDIDATE campaign takes off
Time: 11:45 AM
Nolopro reports on the backlash against Cappiello's arrogant illegal sign crusade in Brookfield...
as seen in Brookfield, Long Meadow Hill. to me, that little hand written sign speaks VOLUMES.
Getting more reports of similar signs in other areas and I'll update everyone as I get new info.
BTW: I found it funny that even Gov. Rell doesn't have a Cappiello sign on her front lawn while having no problem placing a McCain/Palin and Scribner signs...guess she thinks Cappiello is going over board with his arrogant illegal lawn sign campaign also.
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