Category Archives: Republicans

Republicans Don’t Like Malloy Spending – Except Sometimes

by Categorized: Gov. Dannel Malloy, John McKinney, Republicans, Tom Foley Tagged: Date:

Gov. Dannel Malloy is constantly getting hammered by Republicans for being one of those free-spending Democrats who try to bolster their reelection chances by handing out all kinds of taxpayer dollars for local projects.

Of course, there can be exceptions. Take, for example, the cool $1.5 million state grant that just happens to be going to a public golf course in the district of state House GOP Leader Lawrence F. Cafero Jr.

House Republican Leader Lawrence F. Cafero Jr.

House Republican Leader Lawrence F. Cafero Jr.

The money for improvements to the  Oak Hills Park golf course in Cafero’s home base of Norwalk is expected to be approved next week by the state Bond Commission. Malloy, who is facing a tough fight to win reelection to a second term this year, is chairman of the bond panel and decides what projects get to be voted on by that august body.

Cafero, like Republican gubernatorial candidates Tom Foley and John McKinney, has often blasted Malloy for his free-spending ways. On the other hand, Cafero has essentially given up his own ambitions to sit in the governor’s chair and is retiring from the legislature after this year.

This time around, Cafero is thanking the Democratic governor and calling the decision on the Oak Hills Park course “welcome news.”

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McKinney, Foley Spar at Courant-Fox CT Debate

by Categorized: 2014 Election, John McKinney, Republicans, Tom Foley Date:

By Matthew Q. Clarida

The gloves came off as John McKinney and Tom Foley, two Republican hopefuls for governor, squared off on the economy, spending, and Common Core in a debate Thursday.

The hourlong forum was held at the Courant’s offices and moderated by the paper’s Christopher P. Keating and Laurie Perez of Fox CT.

McKinney, a state senator from Fairfield and the Republican leader in the senate, was aggressive from the start, attacking Foley for a spending plan McKinney claimed would offer little change from Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s. Foley pledged to hold spending flat, while McKinney has consistently proposed cuts.

“We need to be honest with the people of the state of Connecticut: I have the only plan to reduce spending, in real dollars, in the state of Connecticut,” McKinney said.

McKinney stayed on the offensive when asked about his tax plan. Like Foley, he said that he would cut taxes, but he attacked his opponent for a recent advertisement which said that McKinney has voted with Malloy to raise taxes.

“[Foley] is running as an outsider but his commercial is like that of a typical politician, distorting the facts,” McKinney said.

Foley continued his charge that McKinney, who has served in the state Senate since 1999, is part of a dysfunctional insider’s club in Hartford.

“John McKinney has been in the legislature for 15 years. He’s part of the problem,” Foley said.



With a Month to Go, GOP Primary Campaign Picks Up Speed

by Categorized: 2014 Election, John McKinney, Republicans, Tom Foley Date:

The race for the Republican nomination for governor is kicking into high gear this weekend.

With about a month to go before the Aug. 12 primary, Tom Foley and John McKinney plans to attend Sailfest 2014 in New London, which draws tens of thousands of visitors to the coastal city.

McKinney and running mate David Walker will also march in the Enfield Independence Day parade, which steps off at 11 a.m. Saturday and is part of a huge weekend festival. On Sunday, McKinney and Walker will attend another big event: the Puerto Rican parade and festival in Bridgeport.

UPDATE: Tom Foley will also attend the Enfield parade. His campaign had initially said he was attending Sailfest but plans changed this morning and Foley is going to Enfield instead.

Some observers have noted that Foley, who won the endorsement at the Republican party convention in May,  is eschewing the rough and tumble of the campaign trail, avoiding most debates and steering clear of other unscripted events.

Foley campaign spokesman Chris Cooper rejects the idea that the candidate is employing a “Rose Garden” strategy.

“It’s a ridiculous assertion,” Cooper said. “He’s been meeting with people for well over a year on a regular basis…he’s attended all of the [Republican town committee] forums and debates leading up to the convention. He’s been going around interviewing people and even recording them. He’s been doing urban outreach events…he was in a workshop with parents about how to improve their schools…he’s been meeting editorial boards.”

Cooper added: “Tom is meeting and talking to people every day and he’s also doing everything it takes to build a campaign organization.”

As far as McKinney’s approach, spokeswoman Jodi Latina said the candidate will be out and about as much as possible.

“Every weekend is important to us and we’re going to be out there as much as we can be..meeting with the people and listening to what their concerns are,” Latina said. “We want them to know that there’s a clear choice on Aug. 12.”


CT GOP Facebook Page Hearts Tom Foley

by Categorized: John McKinney, Republicans, Tom Foley, Uncategorized Date:
State Republican party Chairman Jerry Labriola Jr. has officially remained neutral in the GOP gubernatorial race–at least so far–and the party has not spent money in support of any particular candidate.
But social media gives a strong hint as to where the party’s allegiances lie.
The Connecticut Republican Party’s Facebook page is larded with photos of Tom Foley, who won the endorsement at the party convention in May.
A shot of Foley marching in the Madison Independence Day parade is the cover photo. The party also posted a link to Foley’s new TV ad.
You have to scroll down pretty far to find a photo of John McKinney, Foley’s primary opponent but eventually, you will find a picture of him and other party dignitaries at the Chairman’s Dinner. It was taken on Oct. 12, 2012.
Labriola said the party will coalesce around the winner of the primary. But he also said the GOP, which lags behind the Democrats in terms of both organization and funding, cannot wait until Aug. 13 to gear up for the general election.
“We’re committed to building out our campaign infrastructure and ground game with an eye toward the November general election,” Labriola said.
“We don’t have the luxury of waiting until August to begin this effort,” he added. “The one thing about political campaigns is that the calender shows no mercy. The product of our efforts will benefit whoever our eventual nominees will be.”

GOP Gubernatorial Rivals Set To Face Off For First Time in Rocky Hill

by Categorized: 2014 Election, John McKinney, Republicans, Tom Foley Date:

The two remaining Republican candidates for governor, Tom Foley and John McKinney, will face off on the same stage tonight for the first time since their primary campaign began.

Foley, the millionaire businessman who narrowly lost the 2010 governor’s race, and Senate Minority Leader McKinney, his primary challenger, will both be at a “Meet the Gubernatorial Candidates Forum” at a hotel in Rocky Hill. The 6:30 p.m. event is being sponsored by the Connecticut chapter of the Associated Builders and Contractors.

The forum marks the first round of forums and debates leading up to the Aug. 12 Republican primary. Foley won the GOP State Convention’s endorsement and is heavily favored to confirm his hold on the nomination to meet Democratic incumbent Dannel Malloy in November.

But McKinney managed to collect enough support to launch a primary challenge. Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton, who also qualified for a primary, dropped out of the GOP contest because of funding issues.



Disappointed Lauretti Isn’t Giving Up Yet

by Categorized: Mark Boughton, Mark Lauretti, Republicans Date:

Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti insisted Wednesday that he’s still in the Republican race for lieutenant governor despite Mark Boughton’s sudden decision to suspend his campaign for the GOP gubernatorial spot.

“It’s a little disappointing, obviously,” Lauretti said of Danbury Mayor  Boughton’s announcement. “I thought he might hang in a little longer.”

Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti.

Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti.

“He [Boughton] is probably a little worn out right now,” added Lauretti.

Lauretti said Boughton apparently came to the conclusion that Lauretti wouldn’t be able to get enough petition signatures to qualify for the lieutenant governor’s primary. Boughton was depending on Lauretti’s fundraising ability to help both of them qualify for public financing, and failure to get enough certified voter signatures would doom that plan.

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State Senator Seeking DCF Hearings

by Categorized: Republicans Date:

The following is by The Hartford Courant’s summer intern, Matthew Q. Clarida :

Westbrook State Senator Art Linares is calling for public hearings on recent tragedies involving children being cared for by the state’s Department of Children and Families. According to state reports, nine children involved with the department died of non-natural causes during the first five months of this year.

“Throwing this process open to sunlight will improve our policies and help us to better protect vulnerable children,” Linares said in a statement. “Our mutual goal is to prevent future tragedies. The more opportunities we have to ask questions, the more opportunities we have to strengthen the system. These hearings are essential.”

In a letter to Capitol colleagues, Linares cited recent deaths to children involved with DCF, as well as a recommendation by the state’s Office of Child Advocate, as impetus for the hearings. Linares wrote that the hearing should be scheduled for a date after the office releases its report on all 2013 child deaths.

“A public hearing, I believe, would allow our panel to learn what is being done proactively to curtail these tragic events and help us to determine a timetable as to when investigations will be completed,” Linares, who is the ranking Senate Republican on the legislature’s Committee on Children. “A public hearing would also allow members of our panel to ask child advocacy officials questions about what their short and long-term needs are.” Continue reading

Malloy Promises No New Deficit, Rejects New State Worker Givebacks

by Categorized: Gov. Dannel Malloy, John McKinney, Republicans, State budget Tagged: , Date:

Legislative projections that the state could face a $1.278 billion deficit in the 2015-16 fiscal budget year are simply unrealistic, Gov. Dannel Malloy  said Friday. He also ruled out asking state workers for more concessions.

“We don’t face a deficit,” Malloy said. He said the $1.4 billion deficit forecast by the legislature’s Office of Fiscal Analysis is based on projected state spending increases of more than 7 percent.

“Nobody, no party… is going to advocate increasing our spending by 7.78 percent,” said Malloy, a Democrat running for reelection this year. He said the four-year average for state spending increases is less than half that rate. “This is very much about continuing fiscal restraint,” Malloy said.

The latest $19 billion budget signed into law by Malloy includes a spending increase of about 2.5 percent.

He promised that, if reelected, he would not allow state spending to “blow up the way it did” under the administrations of the two Republican governors who preceded him in office: John G. Rowland and M. Jodi Rell.

The governor also renewed his promise not to raise taxes. “There will not be a tax increase,” he said.

Malloy also said he has no intention of reopening the concessions deal with state employee unions that was agreed to several years ago. He said that agreement “was the biggest reason that we can look at this [state employee] benefits package as sustainable.”

The state’s budget status is far better today than it was when he took office in 2011, said  Malloy. He said that, when he took office, he “got handed a budget based on people not doing the hard work that needed to be done.”

Senate minority leader John McKinney, who is running for governor, referred to the Belmont Stakes horse race that will be held Saturday in New York on the border of New York City and Nassau County.

“I guess with the big horse race coming up, the governor is trying for his own Triple Crown – no deficits, no new taxes and no concessions,” McKinney said. “I understand that it’s an election year, but I believe the deal Governor Malloy made with the unions is unsustainable for state taxpayers and he knows it. We have a retirement system that allows a judge that works for three years to make a $100,000 pension. State employees have defined-benefit plans that are more generous than virtually anything that is available in the private sector. If we are serious about achieving balanced budgets, we need to open the contract and work together for a real solution that is fair to everyone who lives and works in our state.”

Weicker’s Words: Former Gov Calls CT GOP Irrelevant

by Categorized: Abortion, Gay Rights, Republicans Date:

Former Gov. and U.S. Senator Lowell P. Weicker Jr. branded the Connecticut Republican party irrelevant in a radio interview this morning.


Speaking on WNPR’s “Where We Live,” the Republican-turned-independent said the state GOP  needs to stop taking its cues from an increasingly conservative national party.


“A Southern strategy does not work in the state of Connecticut,” Weicker said. “We’re not a religious right state. We’re not an anti-labor state. I think it’s more an understanding of what comprises Connecticut that is necessary.”

You can listen to the entire segment here.

But one prominent social conservative questioned what Weicker was talking about. PeterWolfgang

Peter Wolfgang, the executive director of the Family Institute of Connecticut, said he cannot recall a time when the Connecticut GOP embraced the strategy Weicker was referring to.

“Was it when Jodi Rell signed gay civil unions into law? How about when Rob Simmons voted to keep partial-birth abortion legal? Maybe it was when Nancy Johnson voted AGAINST the Born Alive Infants Protection Act? Was that it?,” Wolfgang asked in a blog post published a few hours after the former governor’s radio interview.

“When was this mythical time when the CT GOP supposedly employed this strategy? Because we here at Family Institute of Connecticut are still waiting for our ‘irrelevant’ CT GOP to at least give it a try,” Wolfgang said.

GOP Responds to ECSU Prof’s Comments

by Categorized: Republicans Date:

Anti-Republican remarks by Eastern Connecticut State University adjunct Professor Brent Terry have drawn a strong response from state Republicans.

On the floor of the House of Representatives Tuesday afternoon, Minority Leader Larry Cafero called Terry’s comments offensive and urged him to apologize. He cited a rule that allows members of the chamber to make a point of personal privilege if they have been personally attacked.

“I am a firm believer in academic freedom, and I’m a firm believer that professors should have that freedom to express their views to their students,” Cafero said.

But, Cafero continued, “in many cases, certainly at a public university, students in a classroom are a captive audience. In this particular case maybe they just wanted to take a creative writing class. I find it offensive as a Republican, as a parent and frankly as a citizen of the state of Connecticut that we would have in our public universities a professor who would make such a comment.

“Because today it was about Republicans, tomorrow it could be about Democrats. Maybe the next day it could be about African Americans, Italian-Americans, Jewish-Americans, the list goes on and on,” said Cafero, R-Norwalk. He spoke for about three and a half minutes and his comments drew a hearty applause.

Cafero called upon the Terry to apologize to the students–and to the citizens of Connecticut. “I would hope upon reflection that Professor Terry would have the decency to apologize to his class and apologize to the state university that employs him and frankly, apologize to all citizens of the state of Connecticut for his inappropriate comment.”

Cafero added: “I would also call upon the administration of Eastern Connecticut State University to demand that apology from its adjunct professor.”

A spokesman for the university did not return an email seeking comment.

In a video obtained by Campus Reform, a website for young conservatives dedicated to exposing “bias and abuse” on college campuses, Terry is shown calling Republicans racists and misogynists.

“To refer to Republicans as ‘racist, misogynist, money-grubbing people’ is outrageous and offensive. And to make such a statement as a public employee teaching a class on creative writing at a public university is wildly inappropriate,” said Connecticut Republican party Chairman Jerry Labriola, Jr. “Professor Terry’s attempt to indoctrinate his students constitutes a clear abuse of his position as a professor at a public university.”

Labriola called on Gov. Dannel P. Malloy to look into what Labriola called a “clear abuse of a taxpayer-funded position.”