While the rhetoric from the Trump White House contributes to that frustration, so many people I talk to have something that hits closer to home these days, from health care issues to an unfair tax burden that impacts their income. There are also a myriad of other economic issues impacting people like being able to afford a child’s college tuition, making a mortgage payment, dealing with living paycheck to paycheck or even as a small business owner working hard to make payroll every week.
People are looking for their miracle, or at least a mini-miracle, to make their lives just a little better and a little more manageable.
But in reality you have the power to make that miracle, or at least a mini-miracle, become reality. You can make that miracle happen by getting out and vote on Election Day on Nov. 6.
If you vote, you can make that miracle happen for yourself year-round with the right candidates on the job working to fulfill your interests and needs. The right candidates include the five Democratic candidates listed below -- 89th State Representative District candidate Anne Harrigan, 16th State Senate District candidate Vickie Orsini Nardello, Liz Linehan, 103rd State Senate District candidate seeking re-election, 90th State Representative District candidate Dan Fontaine, and 13th State Senate District candidate Mary Abrams.
Look at the candidates who are running for office.
Truly dig deep and read and listen to what the Democrats and Republicans are saying in our local state elections and where they stand on the issues. It’s easy to do because they all have their own campaign websites and/or Facebook pages explaining their views on the issues, some a little more in-depth than others. And they all have videos explaining themselves.
After you sift through all the rhetoric, in so many ways the impact of this election cycle goes beyond the issues and it revolves around character. If you really want that opportunity to make your life a little better, if you want a candidate who considers the needs of his or her constituents first whenever voting on any legislation, you need to vote Democrat across the board.
I have been a reporter for 39 years. When you spend one-on-one time interviewing people as long as I have, it takes little time to get a sense of who that person is that you are interviewing and what they are all about. I have spent several months interacting with some of the candidates, other candidates I have known for years.
For the Democratic candidates listed below, the my-way-or-the-highway sentiment of the Republicans just doesn’t cut it. The three Cs are what these Dems are all about - Caring, Civility and Crossing the aisle to get things done. These Democrats are also good listeners.
- People in Prospect, Bethany and Cheshire should vote for 89th State Representative District candidate Anne Harrigan. She knows what it means to get her hands dirty and work hard for her 89th District constituents having worked on a farm harvesting potatoes as a youngster. “I’ve been listening to people, a lot of people,” Harrigan said. “We need to straighten out the budget and getting it in order is a priority. We need to invest in education, invest in our working people, invest in our most vulnerable in the community, including children, and safeguard and improve the health needs of everyone. These will be my priorities when I get to the state legislature. I want to be part of a government that cares about people and community.”
- People in Southington, Prospect, Wolcott, Waterbury and Cheshire should vote for 16th State Senate District candidate Vickie Orsini Nardello. I have known Vickie Nardello for almost 10 years and one of the strengths she has as a politician is her desire to listen to constituents and members of the community in her district. Whether it's knocking on countless doors or interacting with people at a public function, Nardello's focus is understanding the concerns of people, asking constituents what concerns them the most and responding with honest, realistic answers. Transparency is another attribute. Nardello is one of the few candidates to produce a comprehensive breakdown of her platform.
- People in Southington, Wallingford and Cheshire should vote for Liz Linehan, 103rd State Senate District candidate seeking re-election. Why? Because she cares and gets things done. “I listen to the concerns of everyone I talk to in Cheshire, Southington and Wallingford,” Linehan said. “I want to help people any way I can, in my district and throughout Connecticut as well. Just the other day a young woman called me to help her homeless mother in Southington. I made sure we found her a homeless shelter. That is what this job is all about, what it means to me. It’s about helping people and making their lives better.”
- People in Wallingford and Cheshire should vote for 90th State Representative District candidate Dan Fontaine. He is a strong advocate for working families and the middle class. “I’m a positive guy but I’m also realistic,” Fontaine said. “Connecticut is falling behind neighboring states. I want to focus on the unequal tax situation and the budget so that we can move forward. We need to pass a law for paid family and medical leave. I also want to fund tuition-free state colleges like New York State has done and increase the minimum wage. I want to do what I can to help working families in Connecticut. My opponent has opposed these pro middle-class policies.”
- People in Cheshire, Meriden, Middletown, Middlefield should vote for 13th State Senate District candidate Mary Abrams. The retired educator and first-time candidate took the political plunge because she saw the need for someone to step up and be a voice for people in her community and district. She wants to be someone who represents her constituents’ best interests and be a positive influence in Hartford. “I’ve come to the realization this campaign is so much bigger than me, it involves the bigger picture in Connecticut,” Abrams said. “What we need to do is relieve the tax burden on working people and the middle class. But we still need to support public education. We need to find relief to help lower the property tax and I want to find ways to help small businesses. My goal will always be to do what is best for my constituents to make their lives better. I have always been as honest as I could be so no one is surprised by what they are getting.”