Opinion: Why the 140th needs a competitive race for State Representative

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I recently ran in the Democratic Primary for State Representative of the 140th Legislative District, here in Norwalk. Although I missed securing the nomination by a very close margin, I ended up earning the nomination of the CT Working Families Party, and will still appear on the ballot in November.

Some have asked me whether having two Democrats—my progressive campaign against the political establishment—continue in a race against a Trump-supporting Republican is a wise move. I understand concerns about splitting votes. But the truth is, given the roughly 4:1 ratio of Democratic to Republican voters in the 140th, it is nearly impossible for this seat to go to a Republican. In fact, dropping out of the race would be a disservice to our district.  If politicians think they can take our votes for granted, they end up acting as though they don’t have to work for it.

I’m in this race to make sure that nobody takes our votes for granted, and to give us a chance to really think about what’s best for our district—not what’s best for politics. We’ll have a choice in November. We can go with more of the same? Or we can commit to changing to something better.

Let’s commit to something better, together.


Colin Hosten



Piberman September 18, 2018 at 9:19 am

Save GOP Representatives Lavielle and Wilms both of whom have distinguished professional business and financial backgrounds Norwalk Representatives have mostly been distinguished by giving their votes to the Democratic Party. So the obvious question for the candidate is what would you do different and why in seeking a spot on a Democratic sure thing ticket. Most CT Legislators have full time jobs and give only limited attention to their part time State jobs. One of the reasons CT is a failing state. Few Norwalk representatives I can recall over the past 3 or 4 decades have ever made a difference. That neither helps our City nor our State. So what’s the platform ? We’d like to listen.

Debora Goldstein September 18, 2018 at 2:26 pm

The “progressives vs the establishment” narrative in the Democratic Party has just jumped the shark.

The 140th seat is an open seat. There is no establishment candidate running. This is not Ocasio-Cortez beating a 10 term incumbent Crowley.

What we do have is someone with no previous experience in a public office running against someone with several terms of experience on the Common Council.

Mr. Simms may be a bit rough around the edges for an elected official, but nobody can question his commitment to helping his fellow residents in South Norwalk.

He has doggedly worked on their behalf, even when the Democratic Party was in the minority on the Common Council (and did not hold the Mayor’s office), and did so even when his own caucus excluded him from their activities.

It is pretty difficult to run to represent South Norwalk without being a Progressive Democrat. It is pretty much impossible to run as an Establishment Democrat without the backing of the establishment.

Joe September 18, 2018 at 3:54 pm

We need honest legal elections in CT.

We need Photo ID’s.

Ct voter law allows easy fraud with just presenting a utility bill. Our R and D politicians never mention this. They’re scared.

We have thousands of houses filled with illegals who have utility bills. We are the stupid people.

Elsa Peterson Obuchowski September 19, 2018 at 8:56 am

@Joe, if you would like to learn more about voter ID and how election officials determine whether someone is an eligible voter, come to the SoNo Branch Library on Tuesday 9/25 any time between 6-8 PM. The Registrar of Voters staff and League of Women Voters volunteers will be there to answer your questions, and you can pick up literature on the subject.

Rick September 20, 2018 at 12:25 pm

TRIP, a national nonprofit transportation research group , reports lists of structurally deficient bridges ,includes deck, substructure and superstructure,over 300 in all just in Ct

one that hits home is Westport: Rt. 15 bridge over Saugatuck River, built in 1938

report said ct 308 of the state’s 4,254 bridges are structurally deficient. TRIP called that the fourth highest share in the nation.

Money has to come from both DC and Ct where would you find money like that Colin?

I’m sure Duff has a plan an exit plan.

Aside from all this we know what our concerns are they started with Meadow st and have never left the fight. Before going on try finishing something first and let us worry about our place in Hartford.

Trump-supporting Republican ? are you kidding this is what you see as a threat? This guy has plenty of Norwalk issues most are on health safety and those who need help. His delivery may be harsh but he has a message and he’s not looking to split the vote.

Travis is engaged he knows the voters embracing those who have lived here all their whole lives , knows the layout of the land and respects those just moving in and understands whats happening.

The only question is why not the endorsement from Harry? or the others?

Voters have been taken advantage of in Norwalk the push back has already started.

With an environmental record how would you change the CT DEEP ?

This should be easy to lay out for us.

CT Working Families Party + Rilling endorsement = disservice to our district

platform or performance

The person passing out your election flyer didn’t even know you or your platform, if you havn’t got time to meet your voters do you have time in Hartford for us?

nearly impossible for this seat to go to a Republican you are correct Travis is running.

John J. Flynn November 9, 2018 at 3:00 am

A competitive Race was needed. I endorsed Hosten over Simms myself. Neither would debate me. On election day. People were shouting a “Vote for Flynn was a Vote for Trump”. Trump wasn’t running. A Vote for Flynn was a Vote for ethics in Norwalk. Many campaign election law violations took place. Many. The papers all got it wrong. I won and the City lost. The two best qualified candidates lost. The {…} won, who can’t possibly Champion anyone’s interest but his own. Time will tell. People were so intimidated they turned around and went home without voting.

The press did not handle the most important State Rep election for the 140 or the Senate seat properly at all.

The Probate election is seriously flawed. The Attorney General election was seriously flawed. No one won this election; everyone lost.

Edited to remove an insult, a violation of the comment policy. https://www.nancyonnorwalk.com/comment-guidelines/

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