HARTFORD, Conn. – As a candidate for re-election, Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is looking forward to debating a Republican, but he was reserved Wednesday when asked about a potential challenge from a third-party candidate on the Left.
Malloy, who is expected to receive the Democratic nomination at the party’s convention Friday, answered questions on the prospect of a three-way gubernatorial race following a press conference touting rising graduation rates in Connecticut.
Jonathan Pelto, a 10-year veteran of the legislature and former advisor to the last Democratic governor, Bill O’Neill, also made news Wednesday, telling the Courant he planned to form a committee next week to explore challenging Malloy. Pelto has been an outspoken critic of the Malloy administration, especially when it comes to education policy.
During the 2010 election, Malloy beat Republican Tom Foley by just 6,404 votes. A Quinnipiac University poll released last week suggested that voters are still evenly split between Malloy and Foley, who is again seeking the Republican nomination.
Asked about what impact a Pelto candidacy could have in the event of another close election, Malloy said, “Lot’s of things, in a close election, can make a difference.” But without mentioning Pelto, the governor pivoted to his desire to have a clear Republican opponent.
“I look forward to the moment when I can actually have a debate with a Republican as opposed to peoples’ idea of who that candidate will be. Because I think there are real differences on what we each feel is important,” he said.
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