Tag Archives: House Speaker Chris Donovan

Donovan Sends Thanksgiving Email To Supporters

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House Speaker Chris Donovan, who ran for the 5th Congressional District seat this year, sent an email last week to those who supported him during his congressional bid.

In his email, Donovan thanked recipients for their support and friendship and wished them the best in the new year. There was also an opportunity for people to click a button to donate to his campaign.

Donovan\’s October campaign finance report shows that he owes $112,489 in legal fees and an additional $36,654 in other obligations.

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Donovan\’s Campaign Hires New Finance Director

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Christopher Donovan\’s congressional campaign has a new finance director.

Molly Ritner replaces Robert Braddock Jr., who plead not guilty in federal court Thursday to conspiracy to commit fraud, making conduit contributions and causing false campaign reports to be made to the Federal Election Commission.

Braddock was arrested in May and was indicted Wednesday. The indictment accuses him of acting with four co-conspirators to hide the fact that he, on behalf of Donovan\’s campaign, was taking money from businessmen in an effort to kill a bill pending in the General Assembly.

Donovan is currently speaker of the House of Representatives.

Ritner previously worked on several campaigns in New Mexico and was highly recommended, according to Gabe Rosenberg, spokesman for Donovan\’s campaign. Rosenberg said Donovan\’s campaign hired her at the end of June.


Updated: AFL-CIO Backs Donovan In 5th, Murphy For Senate

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The Connecticut chapter of the AFL-CIO threw its support in the Fifth District congressional race behind Democratic House Speaker Chris Donovan this morning in Hartford, a key political pick-up in a heated race less than two months before the August primary.


Donovan appeared much more at ease than rivals Elizabeth Esty and Dan Roberti when addressing the labor group Monday and appeared to get a more energized response from the crowd before him, with loud cheers and some people even rising to their feet to applaud as he closed his remarks on a recurring theme of “fairness, dignity and respect” for workers.

“We need them out there, fighting for working people,” Donovan told the Courant Tuesday as he shook hands moments after the endorsement was announced. “I’m so proud to have the endorsement of a group that works hard every day.”

Donovan did not address the ongoing federal investigation into his campaign’s finances this week, but the ongoing probe appeared to have little effect on the labor group’s support for him at the convention.

Retiring state Rep. Zeke Zalaski, who is also the president of a Bristol-based chapter of the United Auto Workers union, told that the convention that labor groups would not have been able to achieve as many successes at the state legislative level without Donovan’s report.

“He’ll be sorely missed in the state on Connecticut, but he will be a great asset to us in Washington,” said Zalaski, a Democrat from Southington.

No Republican candidates spoke to the labor group this week. Campaign officials for Mark Greenberg and Andrew Roraback said those candidates had scheduling conflicts while Lisa Wilson-Foley’s camp said it had declined the invitation. Campaign staff for candidate Justin Bernier did not immediately return messages seeking comment on his whereabouts.

The AFL-CIO endorsement is significant for the Fifth District race: the group represents some 220,000 people statewide—about 25,000 of them in north-central Connecticut.

That region includes much of the contested congressional district, which stretches from Simsbury and Meriden out westward to Salisbury and south to Danbury.

The labor group’s membership also votes heavily Democrat, meaning the endorsement could be valuable not just in August, but also in November if Donovan should score the primary win.

The AFL-CIO nod this morning marks Donovan’s second major union pick-up of the week. On Sunday, he got the backing of the state’s SEIU council at an event in his hometown of Meriden.

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SEIU Endorses Donovan

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The Service Employees International Union Connecticut State Council has thrown its support behind state House Speaker Chris Donovan in the 5th District congressional race.


\”Our strong endorsement is based on Chris Donovan’s outstanding record and unwavering commitment to all workers, whether or not they are members of a union,\” State Council President David Pickus said in a statement released Saturday.

The SEIU is the largest labor union in the state, representing some 65,000 people. Before becoming House Speaker, Donovan worked for the SEIU-affiliated Congress of Connecticut Community Colleges, which represents community college workers.

Several SEIU members were present at a rally Donovan held in Hartford earlier this month, where several other unions also endorsed the Meriden Democrat.

The endorsement comes less than two months before Donovan faces off with fellow Democrats Elizabeth Esty and Dan Roberti in the Aug. 14 primary for the congressional race.



Party chairs see investigation dogging Donovan campaign for months

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CROMWELL–Though the candidate himself has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, top officials for both Republicans and Democrats in the state say the arrest of House Speaker Chris Donovan\’s former finance director will weigh heavily on his campaign for Congress in the fifth congressional district for months to come.

Connecticut Republican Party Chairman Jerry Labriola Jr. and Democratic Party Chairwoman Nancy DiNardo largely avoided discussion of the Donovan\’s campaign–or any of the state\’s contentious races–as they each addressed the annual meeting of the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities here Thursday.

DiNardo went first and promptly launched into a sort of stump speech for President Barack Obama. Labriola told the gathering of mayors, selectmen and other municipal officials from around the state that Republicans have \”achieved unity\” in all races except the fifth district and the U.S. Senate race, where there will be competitive primaries for both parties.

But speaking to a Courant reporter after the meeting, both said the arrest of the Donovan staffer Robert Braddock Jr. could hurt the candidate and the Democrats as a whole, even though Donovan himself hasn\’t been named as a target of the federal probe into his campaign.

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