We’ve decided not to go with endorsements this time around. Instead, each of us has the option of posting who he or she is voting for, and why. This gives us the opportunity to talk about candidates we like, without going the extra (and probably pointless) step of making a formal endorsement.
The following is my list.
For U.S. Senator: Alan Schlesinger (R) I know where he's polling--and I don't care. I’m also well aware of the fact that I supported Ned Lamont over Sen. Lieberman in the primary. I actually have nothing against Mr. Lamont. I think he’s a good candidate with good intentions; I just think Mr. Schlesinger is better informed and more committed. There are several reasons for this:
- Iraq: Schlesinger supports examining a three-state solution, which I think is a sensible and realistic way of dealing with the problem. I have long thought that the end result of our Iraq adventure would be three semi-autonomous states. In the case of Kurdistan, it’s already essentially true. No other candidates are thinking this way, and it’s refreshing. There are problems with this solution, of course (Turkey being a big one), but they are mostly diplomatic/political in nature.
- Fiscal discipline: Schlesinger is knowledgeable about fiscal matters and shows a serious interest in getting our nation’s fiscal house in order. His plan for fixing social security is especially compelling.
- Character: We all have flaws. Gambling and ego may very well be his. However, a moment that impressed me was when he stood up to yell at hecklers at the recent debate. He was livid that they would disrupt a decent democratic proceeding—and that was absolutely the right response.
I disagree with him on some issues. He would rather we err on the side of safety, while I would rather see us err on the side of liberty. He would have supported the recent detainee bill if it had contained a sunset clause, for example. His position on immigration is a little too hard-nosed, as well. But in most cases, I agree with him. I also think sending him to Washington would be like throwing a live grenade into the Senate. That’s a good thing. Schlesinger is that rare creature in 2006: a Republican whose presence in Congress could spark change.
Choosing between Schlesinger and Lamont was not easy. I do like Mr. Lamont, as I’ve said. I wouldn’t be sad to see him win at all--and if the race narrows to the point where every vote is needed for him to defeat Lieberman, I may reconsider. As for Sen. Lieberman himself, I simply can't support him. He seems neither to be a bridge builder nor a crafter of compromise, but instead just someone who is willing to attack his own party for political gain. That really isn't bipartisanship or moderation. I am disappointed in his conduct, especially during this race, and I believe he is the least likely candidate in the race to effect any sort of change in Washington. He certainly doesn't seem to have any viable solutions for resolving the conflict in Iraq, which he has so enthusiastically championed in the past. Mr. Schlesinger would make the best senator of the three.
For Governor: Jodi Rell (R) We have had reasonable, pragmatic and steady governance under Gov. Rell, and I would like to see her continue on. Her very active support for campaign finance reform is a major part of why I’m voting for her. Also, she could give Sen. Lieberman lessons in what it’s like to actually work across party lines. Her presence has helped to moderate the Democratic-held General Assembly (the civil unions compromise is a good example of this), which I believe is positive for Connecticut.
John DeStefano is a good man with bright ideas. But I don’t relish the idea of him as governor, and I worry about his tendency to make enemies instead of allies in the legislative bodies he works with. Above all else, Gov. Rell is right when she says that his numbers simply don’t add up. I don’t think there is a way for us to pay for all of DeStefano’s ideas. Therefore, I support the continuation of the pragmatic and thoughtful, if sometimes too slow and reactive, government of the incumbent.
For U.S. Representative: Joe Courtney (D) We do need change in Washington, which is one of the major reasons why I’m not supporting Sen. Lieberman. Rob Simmons has been a capable legislator, and I voted for him last time. However, he has sided with the GOP leadership too often for my taste, and his position on the recent detainee bill was, despite the fact that it was a compromise for Simmons, wrong. Simmons has done too much to exacerbate the current state of affairs and, unlike Schlesinger, probably won’t act to change much of anything should he be returned to Washington. Mr. Courtney, on the other hand, impressed me with his knowledge of the issues, and his record as a legislator shows him capable of getting things done without alienating either members of the opposition or his own party.
For Attorney General: Richard Blumenthal (D) Although he has been in office for what seems like forever, I see no good reason not to re-elect him. Robert Farr certainly doesn't make a compelling case.
For Secretary of the State: Susan Bysiewicz (D) Although her tenure has been a bit rocky, her office made the right choice by supporting optical-scan voting machines (eventually).
For State Treasurer: Denise Nappier (D) - Although Linda Roberts is a good candidate, Ms. Nappier has mostly done well as treasurer.
For State Senator: John Kissel (R) I like his positions on campaign finance reform, and he has been a pragmatic and intelligent legislator. My one major issue with him is his vote against civil unions in 2005, so my vote for Kissel will be cast with some serious reservations. It is my hope that Sen. Kissel, who was very public in his opposition to the bill, will see that there is nothing unreasonable about extending the rights of marriage to same-sex couples. It has not caused the widespread social discord that so many predicted in either Massachusetts or Connecticut.As for Democrat Bill Kiner, I have been less than thrilled with the negative tone of his campaign.
For State Representative: Karen Jarmoc (D) I have nothing against Republican Charles Woods. However, Ms. Jarmoc has a good command of the issues and seems very familiar with the workings of state and local government through the many organizations she is a part of. She will hopefully be more involved than her husband, retiring State Rep. Steven Jarmoc (D), who was a casual legislator at best.
Again, these are just my own votes and opinions, and are not meant to represent the opinions of the site as a whole. So how about you? Where do you stand?