- Decency, Honesty, Integrity
By Joe Shapiro
Ridgefield ballot Row A lists Vice President Joe Biden/Senator Kamala Harris, Congressman Jim Himes, State Senator Will Haskell, and either 111th District State Representative candidate Aimee Berger-Girvalo or 138th District State Representative Kenneth Gucker. Ridgefield Democrats urge you to color every oval on Row A (no others).
Combining presidential, congressional, state senate, and state assembly contests, this election is about many things, but just three words.
Nationally, it is about restoring virtue and competence in the presidency, accountability and productivity in Congress, legitimacy and reason in the judiciary, and rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for everyone. In Connecticut, it is about extending Democratic-initiated reforms that have dramatically strengthened Connecticut’s fiscal and economic outlook in recent years, have funded massive liabilities accumulated mostly under Republican governors, and have safeguarded the state’s Rainy Day Fund from short-sighted Republican raiding. And it is about Connecticut implementing support and recovery programs like tax credits for seniors, families, students, and local businesses. It’s about ensuring and enhancing local excellence for all public school students, bringing paid family and medical leave to Connecticut, recalibrating our economy for continuous prosperity, and building upon on best-in-nation gun safety laws that Connecticut achieved last year.
Ultimately, though, this election is about three words: decency, honesty, integrity.
Biden-Harris, Himes, Haskell, Berger-Girvalo, and Gucker live those words’ authentic meanings. The distinction between Democrats and Republicans on those standards is painfully obvious in the Biden-Harris campaign for the White House, but no less real down ballot.
Congressman Himes is a paragon, recognized throughout our district and nationally for thoughtful leadership, dedication, compassion, competence, honesty, and integrity. His great successes stem from his practice of these virtues on behalf of our district and our country.
State Senator Haskell, State Representative candidate Berger-Girvalo, and State Representative Gucker are operationalizing those virtues on behalf of all in our community with their commitments to fortifying state law such as protections against gun violence.
Their Republican opponents – Kim Healy, Bob Hebert, Emile Buzaid – have not campaigned with decency, honesty, integrity. Last week, Hebert told the CT Mirror that he supports Trump’s reelection, and that he hides his support from voters. Healy, Hebert, and Buzaid focused their campaigns on the purely fictitious, dog-whistle issues of imminent state fiscal collapse, forced school regionalization, and prohibition of single-family zoning – this despite the fact that State Senator Haskell led the fight against school regionalization, and Berger-Girvalo and Gucker share Haskell’s strong views on this and on local zoning protection.
Haskell, Berger-Girvalo, and Gucker will represent Ridgefield’s interests and values with decency, honesty, and integrity. They will accelerate the Democratic-initiated fiscal discipline that led to Connecticut being commended by independent bond-ratings agencies as one of the states best positioned to emerge from the pandemic and economic crisis. They are committed to sound economic policies to ensure our town and state will be able to deliver educational excellence and economic prosperity.
For our nation, our state, and especially our town, please Vote Row A, All the Way.
Joe Shapiro is chair of the Ridgefield Democratic Town Committee, which provides this column.
- State Senator Will Haskell
The most urgent issue facing Connecticut is the health of our residents and the strength of our economy. I’ve spent two years in Hartford fighting for transportation improvements, strategic tax relief and workforce development. Here’s what I’ll do next:
First: I will continue working hard to help out Main Street businesses. At the height of this pandemic, I fought for emergency no-interest and forgivable loans for small businesses that helped entrepreneurs weather this storm. Earlier this month, Connecticut rolled out another round of grants for businesses to meet payroll and re-open safely.
Second: When the pandemic hit, Connecticut faced shortages of PPE and other medical supplies when we needed them most. I’ll invest in a secure medical manufacturing supply chain that will produce PPE right here in Connecticut and create skilled jobs for Connecticut taxpayers.
Third: With so many people losing their employer-provided health insurance, I’ll keep pushing for an affordable public health care option. Creating a public option would add competition into the marketplace and allow those who work for small businesses and nonprofits to buy into the same, high-quality health care that I enjoy as a member of the state legislature.
- 111th District State Rep Candidate Aimee Berger-Girvalo
This is the most important election of our lifetime. Our rights, values, and future are on the ballot, and it’s critical that we elect leaders who will guide us with strength and dignity on our path to recovery. I’ve released comprehensive plans to ensure everyone has access to healthcare, our seniors get the support they deserve, our small businesses have a clear path to recovery and can keep their doors open through COVID, new jobs are created, and we can keep local control over our schools, protect local zoning, and more. I am committed to racial and economic justice, bold action on climate change, women’s rights, an equitable education system, and healthcare for all. I have been endorsed by Congressman Jim Himes, Senator Richard Blumenthal, CSEA SEIU Local 2001, Connecticut Against Gun Violence, NARAL Pro-Choice Connecticut, Planned Parenthood Votes! Connecticut, and more, and I received the Moms Demand Action Gun Sense Candidate distinction. As a mom, a volunteer, an Applied Behavioral Analysis Therapist, and former manager of several multi-million dollar businesses, I’m committed to building a better future for Ridgefield and for our state and I have the skills, experience, and relationships to make it happen.
- 138th District State Representative Kenneth Gucker
As I knock on area residents’ doors, I hear over and over how people need help dealing with all the problems that Covid-19 has brought. Many are having issues with navigating state services such as unemployment, DMV, social security ect. Our roles as lawmakers has evolved to doing all we can to help people come out well on the other side. If we have learned anything it is, we need to invest in making these services easer to access both in good times, and times like this. Going forward, we need to protect and help our small businesses recover as they have been paying the ultimate price. We need to continue to go after Eversourse and big utilities that believe in profits’ rather that service. There is no reason CT should have to pay the rates we do for the poor service we get. Lastly, we will need to help families stay healthy and be able to stay in their homes as many have lost their savings and their financial situations have taken a hit. As a community, coming out stronger, with our neighbors at our side is what we need to do but showing up is the first step.