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Updated: 2017-07-08T05:08:23.961-04:00

 



There is No Realty

2011-07-15T14:54:14.272-04:00

It's hard to keep one's balance or grip on what is going on in the halls of government these days. The more I go into the details of massive government layoffs and debt reduction brinkmanship, the less convinced I am any of it will really happen. In Hartford, the state union leaders, who have done more to destroy themselves than 100 Yankee Institutes, are now planning to move the goal posts to the 50-yard line to accept Gov. Dannel Malloy's original "concession" plan.This plan, which the union rejected for fear of being dumped into a single-payer system called Sustinet, would guarantee jobs for all state workers for four years, put off some raises for two years and do little to address the $65 billion unfunded pension and health care benefit liabilities to taxpayers.Gov. Malloy sets off to Utah to be with fellow Governors who understand the real problem and probably lecture them on why his way is the best way to grow the economy. Malloy always seems to have an opinion about every one's business. He scolded Congress for not agreeing to an increase in the debt ceiling by urging members to "grow up."I mean, what's then big deal anyway? What's another $4 trillion in receivables when you come right down to it.And while Malloy was away, his able staff were morbidly announcing cuts in spending and personnel. But those "cuts" are merely notices to some 6,500 employees, who can still "bump" other employees due to seniority. And if you add state workers who are retiring anyway and jobs that are still vacant and not filled, it's maybe 4,000. Who knows? Who cares? It doesn't matter because it won't happen. Yet, the Democrats continue to go through this exercise as if it will and that is unfair to everyone. The only good outcome of all of this is it will irreparably divide the union for years.These massive layoffs won't happen because the Lords of Labor will figure out how to recount the votes, or lower the threshold for passage. They can do that by changing the union by-laws. Under the old rules, 80 percent of union members who voted on the "concession" package, had to approve it. Only 57 percent did while 21,000 members said knet. By the way, has anyone seen or heard from AFL-CIO President John Olsen? Is he okay?Once the unions come around and bend over, Malloy can say he stood tall, did what he had to do and got the result he wanted - $1.6 billion in savings and no disruption in state services. He will shrug when Republicans and those who reside in this universe that Malloy did all of this by pushing through the largest tax increase in Connecticut history.And while the executive and judicial branches have at least gone through the motions to cut their budgets, the Legislative branch - those charged with the public purse - have no cut a penny from its bottom line. There has been no shared sacrifice from the Legislature. No one has given up a day's mileage, or part-timers in the mail room or a subscription to Legislature Today.Again, those in the reality challenged community known as Hartford, have little clue or appreciation for the state of the economy in Connecticut. Malloy's laughable $60 million corporate bribe to CIGNA puts the final candle on the cake.Isn't CIGNA one of those evil corporations the Democrats spend most of their waking hours deriding and claiming are living well while the rest of us are drowning in a Middle Class quagmire of stagnant incomes and lost opportunities? Shouldn't David Cordani, the CEO of CIGNA, be paying more in income tax to cover the needs of those who are looking for their next meal in dumpster.Guess not or why would the state give CIGNA, a great company by the way, give CIGNA an interest free $15 million, another $6 million for "job training" with the rest coming in the form of tax credits for the promise of 200 jobs?That same day, across the state in Groton, Electric Boat announced it was shedding 100 jobs for lack of work.In Washington, President Obama complains that he would rather be "talking about new programs" than haggling over raising the debt limit. For once, Republicans have a better [...]



CT Post Picks Rob Russo in 22nd Special Election

2008-03-03T17:35:02.903-05:00

With a week to go before the Special Election in the 22nd State Senate race in Bridgeport, Trumbull and Monroe, Republican Rob Russo picked up a big endorsement today by the Connecticut Post.

The Post wrote Sunday:

"The Connecticut Post endorses the candidacy of Robert D. Russo III for the seat. Russo possesses an energy and a modicum of "out-of-the-box" thinking that we believe is better suited to the district and its disparate communities and politics.

A former aide to U.S. Rep. Christopher Shays, R-4, and regional office head for Gov. M. Jodi Rell, Russo possesses a firm and deep knowledge of the major issues in the district and at the state Capitol. He realizes the urgency of building bridges between the urban center and its neighboring suburbs.

We feel Russo is representative of a new breed of politicians that is willing to work across party lines to accomplish common goals and we particularly appreciated the recurring emphasis he's placed on state fiscal prudence during the campaign."



Remembering Bill Buckley

2008-02-28T14:23:09.683-05:00

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It is difficult for many to grasp the impact William F. Buckley had on the modern conservative movement and the political discourse of this country for the last 50 years.

Bill Buckley was the intellectual driving force that propelled Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan and then, Newt Gingrich. He gave many young conservatives and Republicans, like my father and his generation, the ability to stand up in a crowded room and say "yes, we are proud of what this country is and can be," and then took that emotion into elective politics at every level.

When he began his magazine, The National Review, in the mid 1950's, there was little conservative discourse in the halls of power or academia. Much of the Establishment viewed conservatives as lunatics, incapable of understanding the issues of the day or offering coherent solutions to them. Buckley changed all of that through persistence and a true belief in the power of freedom and individual initiative.

He was a writer of letters up to the time of his death, and his use of the English language was without peer. Buckley took on postwar liberalism and in a very short time, brought Conservative thought into practical application. Others can comment better on how it changed the course of human events.

Conservative principles brought this country back from the big government management model to the unlimited potential of the free market and roll back of the New Deal and Great Society. His uncompromising stands against totalitarian regimes and their appeasement led to an end to Communism. He defended Joe McCarthy when no one would, supported giving the Panama Canal to the Panamanians when the right thought him daft and threatened to take Gore Vidal to the parking lot at the 1968 convention.

Bill Buckley also became a writer of great spy novels and a chronicler of sailing, which he did with courage and grace. There was nothing he didn't do well. His sense of humour and loyalty to friends of all political stripes endured throughout his life.

He was above all, a true American, comfortable in his own class and not afraid to challenge the high priests of established conventional thought. As his son, Christopher said, "he died with his boots on," working on another column.

Like Reagan and Goldwater, there was no one like him but he maintain through it all a sense of humility and style that propels others to answer the call to action for years to come.






Everyday Republican.com

2007-12-09T20:12:48.319-05:00

You can now find The Everyday Republican at its new home, www.everydayrepublican.com



Senator/Mayor Finch

2007-12-08T10:18:09.634-05:00

(image) After Senator Bill Finch was elected to be the Mayor of Bridgeport, most observers anticipated that Mr. Finch would resign his 22nd District seat - made up of a portion of Bridgeport, Trumbull, and Monroe - in the Connecticut State Senate. But much to their surprise, the Senator/Mayor let it be known that he was considering keeping both offices. This revelation is meeting with decidely less-than-remarkable enthusiasm in the "scorned towns" of Monroe and Trumbull.

The good people of Monroe are rightly protesting the Senator/Mayor's action:

"The resolution is being considered with full respect for Finch and the fine job he has done as senator, said Councilman Patrick O'Hara, a Republican who introduced the proposal . . .

"I don't think he can serve the needs of the largest city in Connecticut and serve the needs of the senatorial district as well," O'Hara said Friday."


Senator/Mayor Finch's actions have also had the additional effect of placing his constituents in an untenable position of opposing his actions at their own peril:

"But at least one council member thinks the resolution may be a bad idea because it has the potential to alienate Finch, a Democrat.

"I don't want to see him in two jobs," said council Chairwoman Enid Lipeles, another Republican.


"I don't think he has the right to be in two jobs, but I know this will alienate him when he finds out about it. It's a brand-new government and I don't want to alienate him. I know we're waiting for the courts to have an opinion.""


Any time a public servant's actions force his constituents to choose between opposing his actions at the risk of offending him and standing for their principles, that public servant should resign his office. Mr. Finch - pick one.



Roraback Streak Continues

2007-12-08T10:16:22.259-05:00

(image) From Capitol Watch:

"Republican Sen. Andrew Roraback has done it again.

He did not miss a single vote this year - marking the 13th straight year of never missing a vote.

That record covers six years in the House of Representatives and seven years in the Senate - something that no other current legislator has accomplished. The Senate clerk's office, which keeps the records, says that 628 votes were cast this year - and Roraback was present for each one.

"I feel fortunate that neither illness nor any other emergency has interfered with my ability to work'' on legislation, Roraback said.

The streak goes back to January 1995, covering nearly 6,400 votes."



Happy Friday Afternoon

2007-12-07T17:02:28.370-05:00

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We are Moving!!

2007-12-07T15:48:19.707-05:00

After 7 months here at our Blogger-based home, The Everyday Republican will be moving our daily operations to our new address, www.everydayrepublican.com on Monday, December 10th, 2007.

Remember to update any bookmarks or RSS feeds that you may have.

Starting Monday, December 10th, we will be blogging at www.everydayrepublican.com. See you there.



A Date Which Will Live in Infamy

2007-12-07T14:54:35.953-05:00

Franklin D. Roosevelt's Infamy Speech
December 8, 1941

Yesterday, December 7, 1941 - a date which will live in infamy - the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.

The United States was at peace with that nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its Government and its Emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific. Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in Oahu, the Japanese Ambassador to the United States and his colleague delivered to the Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. While this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or armed attack.

It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time the Japanese Government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.

The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian Islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. Very many American lives have been lost. In addition American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.

Yesterday the Japanese Government also launched an attack against Malaya. Last night Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong. Last night Japanese forces attacked Guam. Last night Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands. Last night the Japanese attacked Wake Island. This morning the Japanese attacked Midway Island.

Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.

As Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense.

Always will we remember the character of the onslaught against us. No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.

I believe I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make very certain that this form of treachery shall never endanger us again.

Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger.

With confidence in our armed forces - with the unbounded determination of our people - we will gain the inevitable triumph - so help us God.

I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December seventh, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese Empire."



Thank You to the Troops

2007-12-07T13:19:05.216-05:00

(object) (embed) www.freedomwatch.org



Courant: Gaffey Should Be Censured

2007-12-07T14:39:40.656-05:00

Today, the Hartford Courant issued an articulate, astonishing editorial on the recent conduct of State Sen. Thomas Gaffey, D-Meriden, saying he should be censured by his peers in the State Senate for failing to disclose a personal relationship which affected $1 billion in education spending.
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Republicans should no longer whine and complain about how the Courant is indifferent to the actions of Democrats. At least in this case, the Courant has been thorough in its reporting and now, in its judgment.

"A Compromising Affair" sums up what Sen. Gaffey failed to do during the entire closed door debate and scheme to add $1 billion in state bonding spending on the Connecticut State University System (CSUS) which manages the operations of the four branch colleges of UConn.

In addition, the Courant said Gaffey should be removed from his position as Vice Chairman of the Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee, which has oversight of spending on public colleges and universities.

"Mr. Gaffey's failure to disclose his relationship with Jill Ferraiolo, the assistant vice chancellor for governmental affairs, reflects poorly on his ethical judgment. It should also disqualify him from serving on the legislature's Committee on Higher Education and Employment Advancement, which oversees public and independent colleges and universities, including CSUS."

On Wednesday, Democrats in the Senate huddled in a closed-door meeting without staff at the State Capitol to discuss the Gaffey matter and to question the seven-term incumbent of the details. Sources said several Senators asked specific questions about the nature of Gaffey's role in negotiating the deal which moved $1 billion in spending onto the bonding package that passed the Senate, 24-12, along party lines.

Governor Rell vetoed the bonding proposal, citing excessive spending and a lack of fiscal controls on the CSUS proposal. State Sen. Joan Hartley, D-Waterbury, chairman of the Higher Education Committee, was never consulted on the proposal and vowed not to vote to override the veto until controls were implemented. Senate President Pro Tempore Don Williams, D-Brooklyn, then threatened Hartley with a loss of privileges, including her chairmanship. In the end, Hartley won out and Williams backed off. All the time, no one knew about Gaffey's relationship with the then married Ferraiolo.

State Sens. Bob Duff, D-Norwalk and Andrew McDonald, D-Stamford, were both quoted in the Wednesday Stamford Advocate as supportive of some form of review of Gaffey actions, but they were subsequently mum after the closed door meeting on Thursday.

Gaffey must have given them a convincing story.



Lt. Governor Fedele Drops In

2007-12-07T10:10:17.458-05:00

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Connecticut's Lt. Governor, Mike Fedele, has been featured in this space for his showing up in unlikely places before. But on Wednesday, rather than unsuspecting Democrats, Mr. Fedele dropped into the tiny town of Sprague to tell 8th grader Micala Smith that her drawing had been chosen as the LG's Holiday Card for Connecticut citizens in the Second Congressional District. Ms. Smith, of Baltic, submitted her drawing of a "Mystic holiday scene" for the Lt. Governor's Holiday Card Contest, which solicited art from schoolchildren across Connecticut for the Holiday Card.

According to the Norwich Bulletin article, Micala, 13, was quite surprised to learn that the Lt. Governor had arrived to see her, commenting, "Then my principal came in and said, 'The lieutenant governor is here,'" Smith said. "I said, 'Really?' It was a big shock. I had no idea".




Huckabee and Chuck Norris on Faith

2007-12-06T12:19:45.648-05:00

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New! The Everyday Republican

2007-12-06T11:25:15.151-05:00

(image) On Monday, December 10th, we will be moving our day-to-day operations to our new home, http://www.everydayrepublican.com/. The new site is now up and open to the public as we make some last minute tweaks to it. Feel free to check it out.

Again, we will be moving our daily operations to the new page on Monday, December 10th. Remember to change your bookmarks to the new address or grab the new RSS feed.



"Faith in America" by Gov. Mitt Romney

2007-12-06T11:06:13.526-05:00

"Faith In America" Remarks As Prepared For DeliveryThe George Bush Presidential LibraryCollege Station, TexasDecember 6, 2007"Thank you, Mr. President, for your kind introduction."It is an honor to be here today. This is an inspiring place because of you and the First Lady and because of the film exhibited across the way in the Presidential library. For those who have not seen it, it shows the President as a young pilot, shot down during the Second World War, being rescued from his life-raft by the crew of an American submarine. It is a moving reminder that when America has faced challenge and peril, Americans rise to the occasion, willing to risk their very lives to defend freedom and preserve our nation. We are in your debt. Thank you, Mr. President."Mr. President, your generation rose to the occasion, first to defeat Fascism and then to vanquish the Soviet Union. You left us, your children, a free and strong America. It is why we call yours the greatest generation. It is now my generation's turn. How we respond to today's challenges will define our generation. And it will determine what kind of America we will leave our children, and theirs."America faces a new generation of challenges. Radical violent Islam seeks to destroy us. An emerging China endeavors to surpass our economic leadership. And we are troubled at home by government overspending, overuse of foreign oil, and the breakdown of the family."Over the last year, we have embarked on a national debate on how best to preserve American leadership. Today, I wish to address a topic which I believe is fundamental to America's greatness: our religious liberty. I will also offer perspectives on how my own faith would inform my Presidency, if I were elected."There are some who may feel that religion is not a matter to be seriously considered in the context of the weighty threats that face us. If so, they are at odds with the nation's founders, for they, when our nation faced its greatest peril, sought the blessings of the Creator. And further, they discovered the essential connection between the survival of a free land and the protection of religious freedom. In John Adams' words: 'We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion... Our constitution was made for a moral and religious people.'"Freedom requires religion just as religion requires freedom. Freedom opens the windows of the soul so that man can discover his most profound beliefs and commune with God. Freedom and religion endure together, or perish alone."Given our grand tradition of religious tolerance and liberty, some wonder whether there are any questions regarding an aspiring candidate's religion that are appropriate. I believe there are. And I will answer them today."Almost 50 years ago another candidate from Massachusetts explained that he was an American running for President, not a Catholic running for President. Like him, I am an American running for President. I do not define my candidacy by my religion. A person should not be elected because of his faith nor should he be rejected because of his faith."Let me assure you that no authorities of my church, or of any other church for that matter, will ever exert influence on presidential decisions. Their authority is theirs, within the province of church affairs, and it ends where the affairs of the nation begin."As Governor, I tried to do the right as best I knew it, serving the law and answering to the Constitution. I did not confuse the particular teachings of my church with the obligations of the office and of the Constitution – and of course, I would not do so as President. I [...]



"Faith in America" Thursday 10:30am

2007-12-05T21:20:11.456-05:00

With his poll numbers stagnant and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee on the rise in Iowa and national polls, the long anticipated Romney "religious issue" speech is finally going to happen. Apparently unfazed by the Kennedy parallels, Romney will be in Texas at the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library tomorrow to give a speech the Romney campaign has (creatively) dubbed "Faith in America".

It appears as though the Romney folks have a great deal riding on tomorrow's speech, having done a full week worth of buildup and will even be live streaming the event on their website, (creatively dubbed) www.mittromney.com . With so much at stake at such a critical time, many are speculating what Mr. Romney will say in his personally-written speech.

The reality is despite Romney's well-financed efforts in Iowa and New Hampshire, the so-called "Huckaboom" has certainly spooked the high command of the Romney effort. Mr. Huckabee has, according to the tracking at Real Clear Politics, has climbed from fourth to first in the space of roughly six weeks in Iowa polling. The Speech, as they say, certainly has the hallmarks of a "do or die" gamble from Mr. Romney. After the widespread hype, anything less than JFK redux may put the former Massachusetts' Governor's campaign into freefall. And even then, with the expectations bar so high, it is difficult to fathom the benefits to meeting or (how is this even possible?) exceeding them.

Whatever the result, tune into www.mittromney.com tomorrow at 10:30am to see "Faith in America" as it happens.



Big Boy on the Hot Seat

2007-12-05T14:52:07.194-05:00

State Sens. Bob Duff, D-Norwalk, and Andrew McDonald, D-Stamford have broken from their Democratic delegation, now calling for a review of Sen. Thomas Gaffey's action over a $1 billion bonding proposal.
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In today's Stamford Adovcate, Duff said the following:

"If any of what has been published is true, then we do need to investigate. It just opens up a lot of questions."

And McDonald, who is fighting Gaffey for the a future shot at Majority Leader, also landed on the Gaff.

State Sen. Andrew McDonald, D-Stamford, said he wants to hear more of Gaffey's side of the story.


"I think there are legitimate questions," McDonald said. He added, although he might still have voted for the CSU plan knowing of Gaffey's relationship with Ferraiolo,"it would have heightened everybody's scrutiny of the project.



Coming Soon: www.EverydayRepublican.com

2007-12-05T10:42:44.598-05:00

(image) On Monday, December 10th, we will move to our new home on the blogosphere, http://www.everydayrepublican.com/. We'll be posting notices here periodically about the move and leave the site up for as long as Blogger lets us - which, as best we can tell, is forever. We will open up the new site tomorrow so that we can do some tests to make sure everything works properly and identify any final tweaks we want to make.

Remember to change your bookmarks and links to our site. We look forward to the new opportunities that the site presents - www.everydayrepublican.com , starting Monday, December 10th.



Rob Kane, Republican Nominee for the 32nd District

2007-12-05T10:27:39.918-05:00

Robert J. Kane, of Watertown, was nominated last night to be the Republican candidate for the 32nd Senate seat, now vacated after the resignation of Lou DeLuca. He won the nomination at the 32nd District Convention last night, winning a narrow 34-30 vote over State Representative Art O'Neill (R-69th).

Mr. Kane has been active in his hometown of Watertown for years now, having served on the Town Council for three terms and just elected to his fourth in at the beginning of November. He was the Chairman of the Town Council from 2005-2007. A graduate of Central Connecticut State University, Mr. Kane founded KarTele in 1994 at 511 Wolcott Street, Waterbury. He has been honored with the 1999 Malcolm Baldridge Award for Volunteerism and the Harold Webster Smith Small Business of the Year Award in 2004 by the Waterbury Regional Chamber. He is a former board member of the United Way - Waterbury Association for Retarded Citizens. His wife, Marcy Kane Ph.D., is the 2006 Board of Directors Vice President.

Mr. and Mrs. Kane have two children, Aidan and Deana.



Kane Posts Win at 32nd District Convention

2007-12-04T22:05:29.114-05:00

Watertown Town Councilor Robert J. Kane narrowly won the nomination to run in the 32nd District Special Election next January 15. In a vote of 34 votes to 30 votes, with one delegate from Seymour absent, Mr. Kane defeated State Representative Art O'Neill (R-69th) by just four votes. A special election has been called to fill the seat of resigned Senator Lou DeLuca.

The Convention, held this evening at the Woodbury Senior Center, was chaired by the Chairman of the Connecticut Republican Party, Christopher C. Healy.

We'll have more coverage of now candidate Rob Kane tomorrow.



Convention Results

2007-12-04T20:25:41.639-05:00

34 to 30 for Rob Kane of Watertown



32nd District Convention Tonight

2007-12-04T17:52:32.113-05:00

Tonight, Delegates to the 32nd Senate District Convention will descend upon the Woodbury Senior Center at 7pm to nominate a new Republican candidate to fill the vacant seat. The mechanics of the convention are fairly simple, but because they usually happen in bunches, they are never featured as a wonder of democracy in action, but rather generally viewed as pro forma exercises in ridiculousness as required by bureaucracy - and sometimes, they are. But during a special election, wherein the law provides for no primary, the Convention is where the action is at.


For this evening's convention, 65 Delegates will be seated from the ten towns, with the following breakdown:


Bethlehem - 4
Bridgewater - 3
Middlebury - 6
Oxford - 7
Roxbury -3
Seymour (Districts 1 & 3 are in the 32nd District) - 5
Southbury - 13
Thomaston - 4
Watertown - 13
Woodbury - 7


Per the Connecticut Republicans State Party Bylaws, these delegates to the convention were chosen back in March of 2006 to nominate a Republican for the 2006 general election - in this case, Senator DeLuca was renominated - and are called to reconvene to nominate a replacement candidate. In the case that a delegate is unable to attend, they are allowed to designate an alternate to attend.

Four people had expressed an interest in the seat at one time or another - State Representative Art O'Neill, Watertown Town Councilor Rob Kane, Seymour Republican Town Committee Chair Brian Koskelowski, and former Oxford First Selectman August Palmer III. Mr. Palmer withdrew his name from consideration.

Tonight's convention will be opened by the previous Permanent Convention Chairman, Rob Kane. Subsequent to him gavelling the convention to order, it is anticipated that Mr. Kane will ask for nominations for a Permanent Chairman, as no candidate for the Convention's nomination can be its Permanent Chairman. Whomever the Convention delegates nominate and then vote for shall hold the position. The new Chair will then call for a rules committee and a credentials committee to be formed for the purpose of establishing rules and verifying the credentials of the attending delegates. The generally accepted practice is to select Roberts Rules of Order as the rules, though the convention has a wide range of ability to make modifications to the rules if they so choose.

Once those two committees have met and performed their functions, the floor will be open for nominations. And then the rest will be up to the delegates.

We will post results from the 32nd District Convention as soon as we get them.



CTGOP NewsChannel: Senator Tom Gaffey

2007-12-04T18:21:03.601-05:00

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The Meriden Record-Journal had a piece today about local Democrats defending the actions of Senator Tom Gaffey. The Hartford Courant had a piece about Chairman Healy and others calling for a probe into Sen. Gaffey's actions. Chairman Healy has spent the day on the telephone with a dozen different reporters from across the state. Keep checking back in with one of the few blogs in Connecticut covering this story - The Everyday Republican.

Update 6:15pm: The story on Senator Tom Gaffey was near the top of the newshour on WTNH, which is now talking about the story on their blog. NBC30 also had a piece on the story, which has yet to be posted to the web.




Gaffey Still Doesn't Get It

2007-12-04T14:54:40.781-05:00

"In our system of government, nothing is more vital than the personal integrity of public officials, and nothing more dangerous than conduct that encourages public cynicism...Offense independent of legal transgressions have serious implications on public confidence as well, and cannot be ignored," - Senators Martin Looney, D-New Haven, Donald DeFronzo, D-New Britain and Andrea Stillman, D-Waterford.State Sen. Tom Gaffey, D-Meriden, gave a predictable response to allegations that he crossed the line between private behavior and public policy Monday, but the questions will linger about why he didn't step away from a $1 billion spending plan for his alma mater. In today's Hartford Courant, Gaffey sidestepped some legitimate concerns over his relationship with Jill Ferraiolo, a vice chancellor at the Connecticut State University System (CSUS). Throughout his Senate career, Gaffey has often felt the ends justify the means. When we questioned whether Ferraiolo had spent over $100 on her boyfriend, who she playfully called "Big Boy," in their email messages, Gaffey stated, "I pay, maybe I am old fashioned." The new Ethics laws forbid anyone, a lobbyist, a private citizen, from offering gifts at that level. It doesn't cut it anymore if you trade dinners or drinks, it's a $100 and that's it.But that fact that Gaffey is picking up the tab is encouraging because a few years ago, he made a habit of spending tax dollars without paying. In a report, it was disclosed that Gaffey spent $10,000 in expense money from his current employer, the Connecticut Resource Recovery Authority (CRRA)without making timely repayments. He also has made a practice of using leftover campaign funds for personal use without disclosing the details.The bigger issue here is this is no way to conduct the business of the state nor to saddle future generations of taxpayers with a billion dollars when it had no chance of passing until late in the game. These type of late inserts are usually reserved for a small pet project or two. Still not kosher, but the legislation in question did not have broad based support until it became leveraged by Gaffey and the Democratic friends who voted for the bonding package, 24-12.Governor Rell decided the bond package and was too high and she rightly vetoed it. Then the Democrats began to count votes for an override and ran into a problem wtih State Sen. Joan Hartley, D-Waterbury, chairman of the Higher Education and Employment Committee. It was her committee which should have had the last say, or any say, in the approval of the CSUS proposal. But she was cut out and threatened by her leader, Senate President Don Williams, D-Putnam, if she didn't vote to override.Hartley rightly pointed out the CSUS proposal had no oversight or reasonable structure to its spending. It was a blank check and given the history of another blank check program - UConn 200 - Hartley was not satisfied.No one told Sen. Hartley about Sen. Gaffey's role in this bill or his relationship with Ferraiolo. Gaffey claimed he was not capable of carrying the bill to fruition, but he did not in an email to Ferraiolo that when properly motivated, he can get it done.""I move mountains for my friends," Gaffey said.[...]