NORWALK, Conn. — Some Norwalk election news for you:
- NPD union endorses Stefanowski, Hampton
- Brinton wins Griebel Frank for CT party endorsement
- Stevenson warns of hoax: she has not dropped her campaign against Himes
Norwalk Police check box for Stefanowski
Police Union Local 1727 President Dave O’Connor said he was skeptical about giving Bob Stefanowski a Norwalk Police Union endorsement in his bid to unseat Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont, but one day later voted along with every other union member to give Stefanowski that support.
Stefanowski, the Republican gubernatorial candidate, came to NPD HQ Thursday and spent 45 minutes warmly talking to officers, O’Connor said. Not only was that touching and impressive, “He made us feel that all is not lost in the state of Connecticut for policing.”
O’Connor said Wednesday that with Stefanowski well behind Lamont in the polls, he didn’t know if it was wise to back a losing horse. He also asked if Stefanowski thought police were stupid when he promised to repeal the police accountability law enacted two years ago.
Stefanowski told union members Thursday that there’s a poll showing him two points ahead of Lamont, O’Connor said. He promised to have a Republican legislator introduce legislation to try to “straighten out” the law. “I still think it’s an uphill battle, because it’s still Connecticut, still a very Democratic state.”
Democratic legislators promised to revisit the legislation in the next session O’Connor said, but “it hasn’t happened yet.” He feels new blood is needed to make changes, because every lawmaker has constituents to please and no one wants to admit they were wrong. “I think part of the issue of being a politician in 2022 is you’re always working for your next campaign…. They’re pandering to a small group rather than the entire state.”
The law, which created the office of an inspector general to investigate complaints of police misconduct, requires police and correctional officers to intervene when witnessing brutality, mandates body and dash cameras, limits warrantless searches, bans chokeholds in most circumstances and clarifies that deadly force can be used only when police exhaust all reasonable alternatives.
O’Connor said he wants the qualified immunity and use of force restrictions removed. He doesn’t like body cameras but “they’re more of a shield than being used against us” and he doesn’t object to that part of the law.
The law is “one-side” and portrays police officers as “the enemy,” as if their exclusive intention is to hurt people, O’Connor said.
“We need some people who are moderate and understand the environment we work in,” O’Connor said. “If they don’t understand the environment we work in, then any conversation we have after that is just a battle.”
Union members back Stefanowski on other issues, as citizens, he said.
NPD union endorses Hampton
O’Connor said the Union endorsed Republican District 143 State Representative candidate Nicole Hampton after speaking to her Thursday. He said that Hampton supports the police, and was the only local legislative candidate to ask for an endorsement. “I don’t think it’s my job to chase them down to ask them to come in and speak with us.”
Hampton is running against Dominique Johnson for the seat being vacated by Stephanie Thomas, the Democratic Secretary of State candidate.
Hampton supports the police, he said.
In July, the union endorsed Republican Attorney General candidate Jessica Kordas, who also reached out to get the nod, he said. Kordas, a Norwalk Attorney, is challenging incumbent AG William Tong, a Democrat.
“We’ve known her for a long time, she has been a friend to policing in general,” O’Connor said.
Brinton’s RCV stand wins her endorsement
Independent District 25 State Senate candidate Lisa Brinton has been endorsed by the Griebel-Frank for CT party, she announced Thursday.
“Brinton earned the endorsement because of her commitment to support an important democracy reform bill that Governor Lamont, should he be reelected, has pledged to introduce during the next session of the General Assembly that would establish Ranked Choice Voting (RCV) in Connecticut,” the news release said.
Griebel-Frank for CT endorsed Governor Lamont because of his support for RCV. Brinton joins 36 other endorsed Griebel-Frank for CT candidates for the Connecticut General Assembly in November, including 11 incumbent lawmakers and 25 other challengers.
Brinton is challenging State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff (D-25), though she has said she feels Duff will easily win and she’s running to hold the third ballot line for the Independent Party. Daniel Miressi is the Republican candidate.
Duff did not reply to an email giving him a chance to respond to Brinton’s endorsement. Miressi did.
“First, I wouldn’t want the same endorsement as Ned Lamont. It would be antithetical to everything I stood for,” Miressi wrote. “Second, I believe this is another example of Lisa putting party over people as she looks to advance the Independent Party line and election reform. So, is a vote for Lisa a signal of support/approval for Ned Lamont too? What’s ‘independent’ about that?”
“I am honored to receive the Griebel-Frank for CT endorsement and join those fighting for election reform, especially from that ‘third line’ across the state of Connecticut,” Brinton said in a statement. “As voters are aware, I have been fighting for reform in Norwalk for years. Both parties claim and counter claim a desire for fairer and freer elections – yet to date, have refused to introduce reforms that would increase turnout, improve proportional representation, increase checks and balances and transparency or tamp down party extremism. I am pleased that Governor Lamont has pledged this reform should he win this November.”
“Ranked Choice Voting is one way voters can fight back against hyper-partisanship and present non-partisan solutions compared to the divisive nature of our election cycles,” the news release said. “Ranked Choice Voting also gives voters more choices, reduces negative campaigning and assures winners are supported by a majority of voters, and not just the largest minority.”
Stevenson’s still in it
Jayme Stevenson warned Thursday that a deceptive text campaign was falsely claiming that she is “stepping down as the GOP nominee for US Congress 4 days before election day.”
“Jayme Stevenson is and remains a viable candidate for US Congress in Connecticut’s 4th District, and will in fact be on the ballot on November 8th,” the Stevenson campaign said in a news release.
Stevenson, former Darien First Selectman, is challenging U.S. Rep. Jim Himes (D-Greenwich) in his reelection bid as both a Republican and an Independent. The Himes campaign had no comment.
“Stevenson became aware of the scandalous text when a local Board of Finance member shared the message with her campaign team,” the news release said. “In addition to stating that the deceptive message is completely false, Stevenson is also warning voters not to open or click through any links that may seem like a hoax. Official messages from Jayme Stevenson for US Congress or any other candidate are all obligated by law to have a campaign disclaimer.”
“It is most disheartening to see that our election process remains under attack by bad actors who will stop at nothing, including breaking the law, to disrupt our democracy and deceive voters,” Stevenson said in a statement. “Today’s assault on democracy only strengthens my resolve to make this a priority for the voters of our district and the American people.”
Reminder: NancyOnNorwalk requires full names from commenters. For more information, go here.