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The year in photographs: Norwalk mayoral campaign

Norwalk mayoral campaign 2013 20131028-173200-034
Norwalk mayoral campaign 2013

NORWALK, Conn. – It seems that much of 2013 in Norwalk was spent in campaign mode, as four Democrats vied to be mayor, generating much activity over the spring and summer and leading to an unprecedented four-way Democratic primary in September, before the real business finally started.

Just in case you forgot, the campaign actually began more than a year ago as then Common Councilman Matt Miklave formed an exploratory committee in November 2012. Former Norwalk Town Clerk Andy Garfunkel, the 2011 Democratic challenger to Republican Mayor Richard Moccia, said he was definitely running, though he never held an official campaign kickoff. District D Chairman Vinny Mangiacopra announced he was a candidate in January and former Norwalk Police Chief Harry Rilling waited until after Moccia announced on Feb. 5 that he was running for reelection before confirming the rumors and throwing his hat into the ring on Feb. 24.

We all know how that worked out. The July 16 Norwalk Democratic Town Committee convention ended without an official candidate after numerous votes repeated the same tally: Rilling 16, Mangiacopra 15, Miklave two, Garfunkel two. The Sept. 10 primary was much more definitive, as Rilling got more than 51 percent of the vote, more than the other three candidates combined.

He proceeded to beat Moccia by 1,500 votes in the Nov. 5 election, a landslide victory, after a campaign that featured endorsements from major unions and a prominent Republican, then-Councilman Nick Kydes.

We thought a review in photographs was in order:

Mayor Richard Moccia announces his intention to run for reelection, wife Barbara Moccia at his side, Feb. 5 at the Norwalk Inn.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Matt Miklave addresses Democrats at a March 18 District A meeting in City Hall.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Matt Miklave hosts a campaign kickoff March 23 at Bradford’s Grill & Tavern.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Vinny Mangiacopra speaks at an official campaign kickoff May 4 in Fera Park.
A fiery Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Andy Garfunkel comes out swinging at a Democratic Town Committee forum June 17 in City Hall.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Vinny Mangiacopra accepts endorsements July 12 outside the South Norwalk Community Center.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Harry Rilling is endorsed by the Norwalk Guardians Association on July 15.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Andy Garfunkel speaks at the Democratic convention July 16.

 

Four mayoral candidates stand to be nominated at the Democratic convention on July 16.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidates Harry Rilling and Vinny Mangiacopra share a tense moment as a standoff continues at the Democratic convention on July 16. No candidate was chosen.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Vinny Mangiacopra supporters (from left) Mike Barbis, Nora King, John Igneri and Warren Pena study a computer screen at the Democratic convention July 16 in City Hall.
Candidates and Democratic Party leaders confer as a standoff continues at the Democratic convention.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Matt Miklave waves playfully as he exits a pow wow regarding the standoff.
Norwalk Democratic Town Committee Chairwoman Amanda Brown and Treasurer Peter Thor seek information as a standoff continues at the July 16 Democratic convention.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidates Andy Garfunkel and Harry Rilling wait for another round of voting at the Democratic convention.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Vinny Mangiacopra speaks at a rally inspired by the Travon Martin murder trial verdict.
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Norwalk Democratic Town Committee Chairwoman Amanda Brown, right, watches the Republican convention from the back of the room. With her is Marilyn Knox, who takes minutes at Norwalk government meetings.
Mayor Richard Moccia accepts greetings after being nominated at the July 22 Republican convention.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Vinny Mangiacopra speaks at a July 31 mayoral forum hosted by Norwalk Economic Opportunity Now (NEON).
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Vinny Mangiacopra speaks to a voter Aug. 22 at the Greek Festival.
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Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidates Matt Miklave and Vinny Mangiacopra take part in an Aug. 26 bicycle rally, riding from the Maritime Aquarium to Calf Pasture Beach.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Harry Rilling takes part in an Aug. 26 bicycle rally, riding from the Maritime Aquarium to Calf Pasture Beach.
Supporters of Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Vinny Mangiacopra wait outside his headquarters on Sept. 10 to hear the news: Harry Rilling won the Democratic primary.
Mangiacopra supporter David Watts hugs Harry Rilling after the results of the Sept. 10 primary were announced.
Rilling for Mayor campaign workers crowd the Rilling campaign headquarters Sept. 25 during an official opening of the space.
Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Harry Rilling laughs at a story being told by Norwalk Police Det. David Orr after an Oct. 16 press conference annoucing that Rilling had been endorsed by the police union.
Mayor Richard Moccia and challenger Harry Rilling debate Oct. 16 at the South Norwalk Community Center.
Department of Public Works employee Collin Pratt reacts to Norwalk Democratic mayoral candidate Harry Rilling’s comment that Pratt will be voting in America for the first time on Oct. 24, after an announcement that Rilling was being endorsed by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Local 2405.
A duel: the candidates debate Oct. 29 at the Norwalk Inn.
Mayor Richard Moccia looks at opponent Harry Rilling with amusement as Rilling is asked if voters will be able to see him as a mayor, not a police chief.
Mayor Richard Moccia and challenger Harry Rilling chat before the Oct. 29 evening debate in City Hall, hosted by the League of Women Voters.
Harry Rilling, Nick Kydes and Bobby Burgess walk to the microphone at an Oct. 31 press conference in which Kydes, a Republican Common Councilman, endorsed the Democrat Rilling.
Mayor Richard Moccia greets a voter on Election Day.
Mayor-elect Harry Rilling jokes with supporters after winning in a landslide Nov. 5.
Norwalk Democratic Registrar Stuart Wells talks about election votes on Nov. 18, pausing from working on a vote tally spreadsheet.
Mayor Harry Rilling is sworn in by Gov. Dannel Malloy.
Newly sworn-in Mayor Harry Rilling shows off a gift from his grandchildren.

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