Thank you to all who wrote back in response to my last email blast on Civics and Civility. To date, that content generated the most response and enthusiasm for positive change moving forward.
Update on Bridgeport Mayoral Primary
Superior Court Judge William Clark ruled on November 20th for another primary election for mayor on January 23rd. This new primary election makes good sense given the preponderance of evidence pointing to election fraud in the September 12th Democratic mayoral primary.
During the initial primary held on September 12, incumbent mayor Joe Ganim secured a 251-vote advantage over John Gomes. Subsequently, Gomes initiated a lawsuit, alleging absentee ballot fraud involving certain supporters of the incumbent mayor.
Judge Clark’s recent court order requires the following:
- Town clerk and staff will make absentee ballot applications available beginning on Dec. 29.
- The city must put serial numbers on ballot applications when someone requests five or more applications. (Most towns already do this as a consistent practice.)
- The Bridgeport town clerk is required to stamp each absentee ballot deposited in a drop box with the words “Drop Box” as well as the Town Clerk’s name and the date and time the ballot was received.
Other practical provisions of Judge Clark:
- The day after the Special Democratic Primary either candidate may request copies of absentee ballot applications, absentee ballot application logs, outer envelopes and inner envelopes be produced to the candidates within two days.
- The court will retain jurisdiction until the Democratic candidate for Mayor of Bridgeport has been duly nominated.
If John Gomes is victorious in the upcoming primary in January, a general mayoral election is scheduled for February 27, 2024. with Gomes as the lead candidate on the ballot. Republican David Herz and petitioning candidate Lamond Daniels would also qualify to take part in the new general election. These election details were coordinated by Stephanie Thomas, the Secretary of the State of Connecticut.
Concerns and complaints about Bridgeport absentee ballot fraud have been present for years. It’s known that entire streets or city blocks have voted absentee. It’s also common knowledge that elderly residents living in public housing complexes have been pressured to fill out absentee ballots for Democratic candidates.
Other practices include unsolicited ballot applications showing up in the mail and campaign workers knocking on doors to encourage and “assist” people with voting absentee. The current law on absentee voting (AB) is voters must return absentee ballots themselves; if physically unable to do so, a signed document is required to authorize someone else to drop off the ballot.
This would all be a comedy of errors if it weren’t so real — and so consistently real in Bridgeport. There are already laws in place to protect against this kind of election abuse. Simply, the law must be enforced.
An interesting though sobering point:
Our urban centers in Connecticut –- Bridgeport, Hartford and New Haven experience the lowest voter turnouts in our state in any given election. Despite the heated mayoral primary and charges of election fraud this year in Bridgeport, turnout was only 20% on November 7th. That 20% number becomes even lower when the eligible-to-vote-though-unregistered are factored in.
So many reasons why and the “what can we do about it” are subject for another email.
Why does this matter to you?
Trust in our election system is essential. Without it, there will be continuing questions on the validity of our vote. One person, one vote must always be one of privilege and trust. We can do this.
Please keep your feedback coming my way. I so appreciate your thoughts and perspectives.