As November draws inexorably nearer, the first real question of the gubernatorial race is being asked: Just how much of an egomaniacal, self-indulgent loony tune is Jon Pelto?
Pelto, as regular readers will know, is mulling a run against incumbent Gov. Dannel Malloy, ostensibly on an anti-education reform platform. His strategy boils down to “I know better than you,” and very little else. There is no substance to speak of.
Which is probably why the GOP wants him to run. Chris Healy, former Connecticut Republican Party Chair and a GOP political consultant with well-known ties to twice-disgraced former Gov. John Rowland, was very clear in a recent post about how much he looks forward to Pelto’s involvement in the gubernatorial election.
“A clever liberal gremlin has emerged to add a new wrinkle to the race that may help the GOP in reclaiming the executive branch,” Healy writes of Pelto.
Talk about strange bedfellows.
Healy has been involved in Connecticut politics for a long time. He actually does a pretty good job examining the numbers. He details exactly how much damage Pelto could do to Malloy:
“Pelto is betting that a portion of the 150,000 rank and file state workers, teachers, retirees and their families are looking for a place to plunk their votes. If he were to pull between five to 10 percent of that pool plus other disaffected Democrats who can’t bring themselves to vote Republican, then Pelto could be the Tom Marsh of 2014. Marsh, a Republican, was the Chester First Selectman, who received 17, 629 votes on the Independent Party line – most of them coming at the expense of Republican candidate Tom Foley.”
When the Republican party’s most outspoken consultant speaks so highly of a Democrat, you know its either out of irony or strategy. There’s nothing Healy and the GOP would like better than a Pelto For Governor Campaign, with the Working Families Party behind it.
There will be many questions before November rolls around. For example, will the crowded field of Republicans continue to use the red herring of Common Core to bolster their own positions and harm public education? Will the high-quality public school options so many parents demand retain the support they need in the state legislature? Will Maria Pereira do something other than threaten a lawsuit?
But for now, we will have to limit our musings to a question of scope: Will Jon Pelto ever see the forest for the trees or is his ego so overpowering that he would rather do harm to the progressive movement for which he speaks?
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