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“Recession is when your neighbor loses his job. Depression is when you lose your job. And recovery is when Jimmy Carter loses his job,” Ronald Reagan famously proclaimed across the country as he made his way to the White House in 1980.
Connecticut Republicans will be looking to trumpet some variation of Reagan’s formula in the aftermath of Thursday’s devastating state job figures. Connecticut has lost 5,500 jobs in August and September. August’s gain of 300 jobs was revised to a loss of 300. September saw Connecticut lose 5,200 more jobs, a stark reminder that the state’s economic prospects continue to deteriorate.
October 20, 2016 Comments Off on August and September Job Losses Threaten Democratic Claims of Economic Competence.
Governor Dannel P. Malloy stumbled in Friday’s post-Bond Commission press scrum. The beleaguered governor tried to distance himself from scrutiny of the $500 million Stamford Transportation Center project. The delayed project’s designated developers and generous family members provided $165,000 to the state Democratic federal fund that expended hundreds of thousands of dollars–by conservative estimates–on Malloy’s 2014 re-election campaign. This is proving difficult to explain. State Democrats agreed in June to pay $325,000 to the state’s election finance agency to keep secret campaign communications among Malloy and his political inner circle.
Malloy told persistent reporters that he has personal relationships with transportation center developers. “I have purposely tried to stay out of this discussion to a great extent,” The Stamford Democrat also declared, “So from the very outset I tried to stay away” from the project, the two term Stamford Democrat declared. Trying is not the same as doing.
Malloy, however, has not walled himself off from the tortured negotiations on a project that was to have begun construction two years ago. His claim to have “tried” to stay away from the long and fruitless negotiations will be unlikely to stand up under scrutiny from those with the authority to inquire into the details of the curious course negotiations with the John McClutchy-led development team this summer. Malloy is unlikely to have been silent as secret negotiations reached a critical point. He may have intervened on behalf of the developers. The Department of Transportation has declined to release project communications between DOT’s commissioners and deputy commissioner and Malloy budget chief Benjamin Barnes, one of the governor’s longest serving and closest aides. Barnes’s leading role has him looking like Malloy’s surrogate.
Malloy’s claim to have tried to stay out of the Stamford Transportation Center deal reminded observers of scandal-prone John Rowland’s December 2003 false claim that cabinets in his lakefront cottage were off the shelf from Home Depot. Rowland was trying to minimize renovations to the Litchfield County hideaway. The doomed Republican governor had not counted on the hero of that chapter of his unraveling, Tammy Lauzier, wife of the cabinet maker who had provided the custom cabinets that graced the troublesome cottage.
Friday felt like a new phase began in Malloy’s year of consequences. It awaits its own Tammy Lauzier–with subpoenas.
October 2, 2016 Comments Off on Dannel Malloy’s Home Depot Cabinets Moment.
Here’s the invitation to next week’s event. Your annual
shakedown dues is not enough to get you in. No mention if program will feature tales from FBI interviews and grand jury testimony. That may be for the after-party.
September 29, 2016 Comments Off on Your Other Contributions Are Not Enough. DGA Seeks Extra $$$$$$ for Obama Miami Event.
There’s no doubt former U.S. Senator Evan Bayh lobbied the Connecticut legislature on behalf of energy giant Dominion. The Indiana Democrat and DC insider testified for Dominion on nuclear energy at a March 24, 2016 legislative hearing.
Bayh’s Washington, DC, law firm lists Dominion as one to its major clients. Connecticut law sets a low bar for who much register as a lobbyist in Connecticut. Bayh looks like a lobbyist: Lobbyist Definition (CT)- A person who in lobbying and in furtherance of lobbying makes or agrees to make expenditures, or receives or agrees to receive compensation, reimbursement, or both, in the amount of $3,000 or more in any calendar year must register as a lobbyist. General Statutes §§ 1-91 and 1-94.
Bayh testified in person and did not, as many do, submit written testimony in lieu of appearing before the committee.
The Office of State Ethics confirms that Bayh did not register as a lobbyist for Dominion.
Bayh was a late substitute for Indiana’s open U.S. Senate seat this summer. His early lead has narrowed as he trues to convince voters he did not abandon the state when he left to Senate in 2011 to cash in on his influence as a second generation member of the Washington establishment.
September 29, 2016 Comments Off on Evan Bayh’s Connecticut Lobbying Takes Center Stage in Indiana Senate Contest.
Former three term Connecticut governor John G. Rowland reports to Otisville Federal Correctional Institution today, Daily Ructions has learned. Rowland was sentenced to 2 1/2 years after being convicted by a jury in 2014 of campaign finance violations arising out of his furtive paid relationship with Lisa Wilson Foley’s 2012 congressional campaign.
Rowland was sentenced to a year and a day in prison in 2005 for committing corrupt acts while he was governor. He resigned his office in 2004.
September 26, 2016 Comments Off on Rowland Begins Prison Sentence Today.
Louis Ciminelli, defendant in a New York corruption investigation, had a curious history of political contributions. Yesterday’s indictment contains details of what Ciminelli gave for access to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. His history of federal contributions, however, is far more modest–until his company joined the development team picked in 2013 to build the Stamford transportation center.
The screenshot from OpenSecrets.org tells the story.
September 23, 2016 Comments Off on Screenshot Tells a Tale of Ciminelli Giving to CT Democrats’ Federal Fund.
Indicted Louis Ciminelli Gave $20,000 to Connecticut Democratic Federal Fund. Family Members Gave More.
This does not look good. Buffalo developer Louis Ciminelli is among those indicted today in a sweeping New York bribery scandal. Ciminelli has been a prolific contributor to New York political candidates. In 2013 and 2014, Ciminelli became a generous contributor to the Connecticut Democrats’ federal fundraising account. That’s the one ensnared in a criminal investigation of Governor Dannel P. Malloy’s 2014 re-eleciton campaign finances.
Ciminelli contributed $10,000 to the Connecticut account in 2013 and another $10,000 in the fall of 2014, according to OpenSecrets.org.
Ann Ciminelli, a Buffalo homemaker, donated $10,000 November 21, 2013. Paul Ciminelli donated $2,500 in December of that year and followed it with $10,000 on October 16, 2014, a busy day for the Ciminellis and Connecticut Democrats.
September 22, 2016 Comments Off on Indicted Louis Ciminelli Gave $20,000 to Connecticut Democratic Federal Fund. Family Members Gave More.
Former Connecticut Democratic party finance chairman Peter Galbraith “Braith” Kelly has been indicted in a growing New York bribery scandal. Kelly is the son of prominent Connecticut Democrat Peter “I am not a hack” Kelly.
September 22, 2016 Comments Off on Braith Kelly Indicted in New York Corruption Scandal.
The Wall Street Journal reports that corruption-busting U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara today may unseal indictments his investigation of the Buffalo Billion economic development program and other government actions. Indictments are expected to target a former aide to Governor Andrew Cuomo, Joseph Percoco, and others.
Also mentioned in reports on the bribery investigation have been active Connecticut Democrats Galbraith Kelly and his factotum, Chris Pitts.
At least one entity immersed in the Buffalo Billion program has ties to the political operation of Governor Dannel P. Malloy, whose 2014 re-election campaign finances are the subject of a busy federal grand jury investigation.
UPDATE: The Times-Union has more.
September 22, 2016 Comments Off on Splatter Alert: Connecticut Will Want to Keep an Eye on New York Today. Nine to Be Indicted.
It’s the only explanation. Trumbull First Selectman Tim Herbst must have been texting from one of his favorite watering holes, The Sitting Duck Tavern (Now in Trumbull!). Maybe it was late at night, maybe not. It has not gone well. Herbst’s nutty feud with beleaguered Democratic Enfield state Representative David Alexander, who seems like a bit of a whiner himself, has taken attention away from Republicans who are on the ballot this fall. Herbst has further revealed himself as an undisciplined loon, given to impulsive outbursts.
The Herbst-Alexander hostilities date to their years as rivals in Trinity College campus politics. (The college must be so proud.) Alexander has had two well-publicized drunk driving arrests while serving the people of Enfield. Herbst thought this would be an appropriate time to even a score and make an intervention. It was not. Herbst’s Clint Eastwood-themed text–featuring, of course, a gun–caused Alexander, who must be a fragile sort, to feel unsafe. Alexander called the Capitol State Police to report his fear. Curiously, he did not call the nearby Enfield police. Someone from the Capitol State called Herbst and told him to knock it off. The rising-star-to-shooting-star says he will cease and desist.
Weiner Herbst says it was a mistake. The 2014 Republican candidate for state treasurer meant to send the clip to a different Trinity classmate.
Herbst has mocked Alexander about being unprepared for “the big leagues”. What would he know of such a place?
Herbst, who was re-elected Trumbull’s first selection last November by a tiny 357 vote margin out of more than 11,000 cast, works on a wide spectrum of outrage for criminal conduct. He’s in a twist over Alexander’s drunk driving arrests but has emerged as a supporter of Bridgeport mayor Joseph Ganim, who was sentenced to nine years in prison for public corruption.
September 21, 2016 Comments Off on Dispatches From The Sitting Duck Tavern. Herbst is a Loon.