Category Archives: Roy Occhiogrosso

Republicans Declare Victory in Special State Election In Northern CT

by Categorized: 2014 Election, CCDL, Gov. Dannel Malloy, Roy Occhiogrosso, Sandra A. Lyon Date:

Republicans were declaring victory Friday night as East Granby finance board member Tami Zawistowski won a special election over Democrat Peter Hill in the 61st district in northern Connecticut.

The special election was held to fill the seat of former Democratic state Rep. Elaine O’Brien of Suffield, a two-term legislator who died in February at 58 of brain cancer.

Zawistowski, a pro-gun advocate and former president of the East Granby Chamber of Commerce, had lost when she ran for the seat against O’Brien in 2012. The district covers East Granby, Suffield, and parts of northern Windsor.

Zawistowski had received support on the blog of the pro-gun Connecticut Citizens Defense League.

Insiders said that the race was emblematic of a broader trend in politics beyond the boundaries of the district. Greenwich business executive Tom Foley, who leads among Republicans in the race for governor, campaigned along with Zawistowski, while U.S. Senator Chris Murphy went door to door with Hill.

The race marks the second time that Republicans have recently won a previously Democratic legislative seat in a special election. Republicans won a seat last year that had been held by Democrats for decades, including by Nancy Wyman of Tolland, who now serves as lieutenant governor.

Democrats now hold a majority of 96 to 54 in the state House of Representatives with one seat open in a Democratic district in New Haven.

“Tami’s landslide victory tonight is a true testament of the strength of her Republican message of restoring much-needed fiscal sanity to our state,” state GOP chairman Jerry Labriola, Jr. said Friday night.

“Tonight’s results are also a clear referendum on the failed economic policies of Dan Malloy, which have given us the worst economy in the nation, brutally high taxes, and an unemployment rate that continues to far exceed the national average.

House GOP leader Larry Cafero said, “This is a great grassroots effort in this district, and we’ve shown over time a propensity to win these targeted races when we get our message out and our people out. This is a wonderful harbinger for the coming election cycle.”

Malloy’s campaign spokesman, James Hallinan, referred questions to the state Democratic Party. Sandra A. Lyon, the chief of staff for the state Democrats, said she commended Hill “on a hard-fought race and congratulate Tami Zawistowski.”

“But please, someone give Jerry Labriola a reality check,” Lyon said, adding, “As much as Jerry needs good news, a special election for a state House race is not an indicator of anything for November.” Continue reading

In First Public Comments, Gov. Malloy Says Foley\’s Charges Are \”Factually Incorrect\’\’ – Foley Calls On Malloy To Release Tax Returns From 2006 to 2010

by Categorized: 2014 Election, Gov. Dannel Malloy, Roy Occhiogrosso, Tom Foley Date:

OXFORD - In his first public comments on an ongoing controversy, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said Monday that multiple charges by Republican gubernatorial contender Tom Foley are \”factually incorrect\’\’ on conflicts of interest by former staff members and a state commissioner.

Malloy, who has avoided talking about Foley recently, repeated several times that he needs to focus on his fulltime position as governor of the state.

\”I\’ve got a job to do,\’\’ Malloy told reporters who had gathered at the Waterbury – Oxford Airport for an unrelated event. \”I suppose he\’s got his job to do. He wants to be governor. But I\’ve got that job right now. I\’m going to concentrate on what I\’m supposed to do.\’\’

When asked by a television reporter if allegations about a former staff member and a current commissioner are incorrect, Malloy said, \”Yes. They are factually incorrect. You guys can follow-up with my staff and go through all of that stuff. I don\’t want to spend a lot of time talking about it. I\’m the governor of the state of Connecticut. I\’ve got a job.\’\’

But Foley told Capitol Watch on Monday afternoon that he is not backing down from any of his charges. He said that Malloy\’s denials were not categorical. Now, Foley is calling upon Malloy to release his federal tax returns, including all W-2 and 1099 forms, for the period from 2006 through 2010 to prove that he did not receive any money from entities associated with environmental consultant Dan Esty.

During a Sunday morning television appearance on WFSB\’s \”Face The State\’\’ program, Foley charged that Malloy had worked for or received compensation from a firm or entity associated with Esty, a longtime Yale University professor and environmental consultant who was later named by Malloy as the state environmental commissioner.

Foley said in an interview that he never said that Malloy was employed by Esty.

\”I said he was being paid as a consultant or given something of value,\’\’ Foley told Capitol Watch. \”What I said was that Esty himself or his consulting firm or some entity that he was affiliated with was providing income or something of value. For Esty to be appointed a commissioner would certainly look like payback. They\’re not denying it. … It\’s very easy for the governor to clear this up. He could release his tax returns from 2006 until 2010 and show all his W-2s and all his sources of income. There\’s lot of ways of being paid without being an employee.\’\’ Continue reading

Tom Foley Doesn\’t Want To Talk About Guns; Instead Wants To Talk on Conflicts of Interest

by Categorized: 2014 Election, General Assembly, Gov. Dannel Malloy, Gun control, Hartford, Nancy DiNardo, Roy Occhiogrosso, Tom Foley Date:

Tom Foley is tired of talking about guns.

The former Republican gubernatorial nominee made it clear Tuesday, after holding a press conference at the state Capitol complex, that he prefers talking about issues like the conflicts of interest by state legislators in their outside employment.

\”If I were governor, the gun bill would have been very different,\’\’ Foley told Capitol Watch. \”This case [in Newtown], the Aurora case, the Gabrielle Giffords case were all mental health cases, and I don\’t think there\’s nearly enough in the bill on mental health issues that lead to violence. There\’s no availability of institutionalization for a lot of mentally ill people, and families have a serious challenge. I have mental illness in my family. It\’s been a real challenge trying to find institutional support for family members who need it.\’\’ Continue reading

Malloy Rejects Constant Rumors That He Wants A Job In Washington, D.C. With Obama

by Categorized: 2014 Election, Gov. Dannel Malloy, Republicans, Roy Occhiogrosso Date:

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy flatly rejected rumors Thursday that he might accept a job in Washington, D.C. with President Barack Obama\’s administration.

A Democrat, Malloy has been friendly with the Democratic administration – fueling rumors about his future plans. But Malloy rejected them Thursday in the way that he has done in the past.

\”I am not going to Washington, except to meet with people. I love this job,\’\’ Malloy told reporters at the Jackson Laboratory groundbreaking in Farmington. \”I particularly love it on days like this. I have no desire to go to Washington other than to do my work as governor.\’\’

The issue came up again on Thursday because Malloy made a reference to the 2014 campaign while speaking in front of a large group at the groundbreaking. Continue reading

After Roy Occhiogrosso Departure, More Changes In Gov. Dannel Malloy\’s Office

by Categorized: Board of Regents for Higher Education, Gov. Dannel Malloy, Roy Occhiogrosso, State of Connecticut Date:

There are more changes in a reshuffling of the governor\’s office staff, including the departure of former state legislator Michael Christ.

The changes are being made following the announced departure of Roy Occhiogrosso, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy\’s senior adviser and a constant presence in the office for the past two years. Malloy said he worked virtually every day with Occhiogrosso over the past six years, dating back to his 2006 Democratic primary loss against New Haven Mayor John DeStefano. Continue reading

Roy Occhiogrosso Not Becoming Chris Murphy\’s Chief Of Staff In Washington, D.C.

by Categorized: Gov. Dannel Malloy, Roy Occhiogrosso Date:

The speculation is starting already.

When Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced that senior adviser Roy Occhiogrosso is leaving the governor\’s office after Christmas, state Capitol insiders immediately started wondering what\’s his next move. That even included speculation that he would become the chief of staff in Washington, D.C. for incoming U.S. Senator Chris Murphy. Continue reading

Sen. Joe Lieberman Hoping To Avoid Fiscal Cliff Over Next 3 Weeks Before Leaving Senate

by Categorized: Joe Lieberman, President Obama, Roy Occhiogrosso Date:

Joseph I. Lieberman is leaving the U.S. Senate in only three weeks, but he said Monday that he\’s hoping that the Congress can reach a deal on taxes and spending in order to avoid the fiscal cliff.

If Congress fails to reach a deal, taxes would automatically increase – something that many politicians want to avoid. The fiscal cliff was created to force the two sides to reach an agreement, and most insiders initially believed that there was no way that Congress would go over the cliff because there is widespread fear that the failure would lead to another recession.

\”I hope with the meeting at the White House [on Sunday] between the president and the Speaker of the House, that that\’s the beginning of a breakthrough, and that we\’ll have some kind of an announcement soon,\’\’ Lieberman told reporters Monday morning. \”I repeat, President Obama and Speaker Boehner are both in strong positions within their own parties and among the members of their own caucuses in Congress. If they agree on something, I believe we will adopt it.\’\’ Continue reading

Foley and Romney Redux

by Categorized: Roy Occhiogrosso Date:

Supporters of Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy are wasting no time linking expected Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Foley with failed Republican presidential Mitt Romney.

The state Democratic party issued a press release Friday night attacking Foley, but the five-paragraph release mentioned Romney almost as much.

\”Tom Foley just doesn\’t get it,\’\’ said Nancy DiNardo, state Democratic chairwoman. \”Like Mitt Romney, he doesn\’t understand the challenges that average hardworking people face.

“He is just another out-of-touch vulture capitalist who sees the average resident as something less.  It\’s a toxic world view that the voters of this country rejected just a few weeks ago.  And if ambassador Foley runs again, he’ll find out exactly what the voters of Connecticut think of his economic philosophy.\” 

 DiNardo\’s comments came in response to an interview Foley gave to WTNH political reporter Mark Davis.

Foley, who lost the governor\’s race to Malloy in 2010, criticized the governor for raising taxes and failing to significantly cut spending. Now, Foley says, Malloy is slashing social services.

\”Now they\’re hurting the little people in the state; Alzheimer\’s funding, the children\’s fund, the disabled, vets. They\’re stepping on the brake and hitting the accelerator at the same time,\” Foley told Davis.

Democrats say those words suggest an elitism that smacks of Romney\’s 47 percent comment.

\”Tom Foley today has shown that he is cut from the same cloth as the failed presidential candidate,\’\’ the release states.  \”Today, gubernatorial candidate Foley referred to average Connecticut residents – including military veterans – as \’little people.\’\'\’

 Earlier today, Malloy strategist Roy Occhiogrosso tweeted this photo:

\"\"

Back From San Diego, Malloy Says He Likes McDonald\’s; McDouble Has Two Burgers With Cheese

by Categorized: Gov. Dannel Malloy, Roy Occhiogrosso Date:

Back from a weekend in San Diego at the National Governors Association meeting, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy met reporters Monday morning at the state Capitol complex and fielded a variety of questions on wide-ranging topics.

One of those was whether he supports taxes on items like candy and soda, which has been a hot topic in some states.

\"\"\”I\’m not proposing tax increases,\’\’ Malloy responded. \”If what we\’re trying to get at is changing behaviors, I think there are other ways to change behaviors. OK? For instance, calorie counts, better disclosure, better public information. I think consumers will make choices and are making choices.\’\’

\”I happen to like McDonald\’s,\’\’ Malloy continued. \”I like the dollar. One is the McDouble, and one is something else. With the McDouble, you get two pieces of cheese and two burgers. That\’s more money. One of them is you get one piece of cheese and two burgers. That\’s less money. That costs a dollar. I like that thing. So I wander in about once a month and do a McDonald\’s.\’\’

When a high-profile aide tried to interrupt during the McDonald\’s tale, Malloy said, \”I\’m telling a story. Just relax.\’\’

The crowd laughed. Continue reading

Legislators Told To Prepare For Special Session Before Christmas On $365 Million Deficit

by Categorized: Brendan Sharkey, General Assembly, Gov. Dannel Malloy, Roy Occhiogrosso Date:

State legislators have been told to prepare for a special session before Christmas to deal with the state\’s growing financial problems, sources said Friday.

\"\"The House Democratic caucus has been told by still-House Speaker Chris Donovan and incoming Speaker Brendan Sharkey to set aside the week of December 17 for a possible session.

Republicans have been calling for a special session, saying that Gov. Dannel P. Malloy must submit a deficit-mitigation plan under state law because the projected deficit is more than 1 percent of the state\’s general fund.

The General Assembly had been expected to remain in recess until the full, regular session starts in early January. But the problems with the state budget have grown large enough to merit the attention of the legislature.

The state is facing a projected deficit of $365 million in the current fiscal year that ends on June 30. Malloy retains certain powers in cutting small parts of the budget, but any large cuts must be approved by the state legislature.

Senator Rob Kane, the ranking Republican on the budget-writing appropriations committee, said he is not optimistic that Malloy and the Democratic-controlled legislature will cut $365 million in spending to cover the deficit.

\”I’m just fearful that all they’ll do is borrow again, like they did a few years ago,\’\’ Kane told Capitol Watch. \”That kicks the can down the road even further. We put together a budget [in the Republican caucus] that had zero taxes. This legislature chose to go the opposite way with the biggest tax increase in state history. It just proves you can’t tax your way to prosperity.\’\’

Regarding Malloy\’s comment Thursday that the state is facing a \”shortfall\’\’ instead of a deficit, Kane said, \”That is really funny in my mind. … It’s a deficit. Let’s face it. Let’s stop sugar-coating it. Let’s tell people the truth.’’ Continue reading