Friday, June 17, 2005

Candidate Blogs as Rapid Response

DeStefano, Malloy Blogs Dismiss Sullivan

One feature of a candidate blog that hasn't really been explored here is the capability blogs and websites in general to respond quickly to new developments. Witness the quick reaction from both the Malloy campaign and John DeStefano to Lt. Governor Kevin Sullivan's signaling of his intentions to signal his intentions to run for governor next year. Luke Bronin of the Malloy campaign had this to say about Sullivan's time in Hartford:

...I have to say, though, that I think Connecticut would do best to look to a candidate who can come to the Capitol in 2006 without the blinders and baggage of having spent decades in Hartford, through the Rowland years. It's time we had a fresh perspective, and while Kevin Sullivan has been a dedicated public servant, I think Connecticut is looking for someone who represents change and has a history of strong executive accomplishment.

On his campaign blog, John DeStefano attacked Sullivan for his contention that everyone would be out of the race if Richard Blumenthal jumped in:

If you think someone else should be Governor, you shouldn’t run for Governor—it’s too important of a job.

(Was this edited? I seem to remember a somewhat longer statement attacking Sullivan for checking the wind before running, or something like that. I may, of course, be losing my mind or remembering a different post elsewhere. That's another problem/advantage of the web--statements can be altered, and no record of the previous statement exists.)

In both cases, the campaigns responded to a news article quickly and effectively through their blogs. Blogs lend themselves to exactly this kind of rapid response; indeed, it's when they are at their best.


Steve Maher said...

I'm not sure I would go so far as to say that Mayor DeStefano attacked Sullivan. Instead, he showed his resolve to remain in the race regardless of Blumethal's intentions. DeStefano's point was that Sullivan's statement to the Courant this morning was inaccurate, plain and simple. It has nothing to do with a personal attack of any kind. Perhaps his comments were misinterpreted.

Ebpie said...

While I agree that Destefano isn't attacking Sullivan, he does use some of the strongest language I've seen in the campaign so far. I haven't been to any of the candidate forums, but as far as blogs and press releases go Malloy, Bysewicz and Destefano have largely ignored each other. As time goes on, however, the candidates will have to distinguish themselves and start laying out more detailed agendas for our state. When that happens things will probably get pretty heated. Given the large amount of money the Democrats have there will probably be a fair amount of attack ads and such going up. Does anyone know if there is a party favorite or if one candidate has an edge?

FrankS said...

Interesting that there was no Blog response to the JI story on all the candidates money. Here's the post

Steve said...

It seems as if Mayor DeStefano has a distinct edge based on the Courant poll taken today:,0,7752972.story?coll=hc-headlines-local. Also, Mayor DeStefano has raised the most money thus far, over 2 million if 15 months.

Ebpie said...

Interesting article on the finances of the Democrats running for governor. It is also interesting how they position themselves as reformers and outsiders, but rely heavily on state contractors and lobbyists.

Genghis Conn said...

Very interesting article. The J-I has been one of the most aggressive papers in covering money and contractor influence in state government. For example, they were one of the primary sources of pressure on Rowland last year.

I'm not surprised that the blogs were silent on this article. All three Democrats come out of it looking a little dirty.

And DeStefano basically said that Sullivan shouldn't run for governor if he thinks Blumenthal would be the better choice. If that isn't an attack on Sullivan, it's pretty close.

MikeCT said...

Sullivan was a wretched, arrogant, and authoritarian Senate leader, more closely aligned with Rowland than with his own caucus (though Moira Lyons was worse). Time to put his political career to rest.

If he does run, however, he'll apparently be at, which he has reserved.

Aldon Hynes said...

I was very interested in the J-I article on the fundraising of the different candidates. I am off in Texas for , so I haven't had a chance to look closely at the article or any of the underlying numbers.

The timing of the article did seem a bit strange. Second quarter reports are due in a couple of weeks and it will be interesting to see if there are any changes.

I must admit, that although I working for DeStefano, and hence dependent on the fundraising, I don't have any good spin on it. I would love to see campaigns publicly funded. I would love to see campaigns funded primarily by low dollar donors, and I hope that through the blog I can get more low dollar involvement in the campaign. But, I don't have any useful comments.

Indian2Nighthawk said...

Aldon -
You do DeStefano a disservice by mentioning that while you work for him you believe in public financing but fail to mention that DeStefano too has pushed hard for publicly financed elections.

Anonymous said...

As long as he isn't participating in that election, of course.

Frank Chi said...

Mayor DeStefano has been a major proponent of publicly financed elections since 2001. He has consistently stressed that in order to preserve the public trust that is crucial to our election process, we must change the role of money in politics. It has led to scandal and wrong priorities too many times, especially in Connecticut.

The Mayor tried to get this started from the grassroots. Not only did he begin building local coalitions to begin lobbying state legislators, he even tried to persuade political opponents to join this cause. However, as soon as any signs of a coalition for public finance reform became obvious to state politicians, people began to be cautious about the Mayor’s goals.

Unfortunately, the bureaucracy of our state government stalled the Mayor’s attempts each time he and his staff attempted to bring reform to light. Mayor DeStefano tried to push public finance reform THREE times. The cause became stronger and stronger each time around, with more supporters and increased lobbying. The third and last attempt involved an overwhelming amount of support and priority from the Mayor and actually came in the form of a statewide bill that was offered in 2003. It was soundly defeated again by state politicians too timid to support public finance reform. You can read more about the Mayor’s public finance initiatives here:

Mayor DeStefano has held press conferences about this issue, lobbyed hard, put together coalitions and tried against all odds to make New Haven a “clean elections” city. He’s also written two op-eds in the Hartford Courant about local public financing and his concerns with the importance of money in politics.

Hope this helped!