These People Want to Be Your Next Gov; How They Feel About the BudgetOctober 31, 2017
Reclaim Connecticut reached out to 15 gubernatorial or exploratory campaigns, to see how candidates would treat the bipartisan budget. Several responded.
Gov. Dan Malloy (D-Conn.) has until Wednesday to decide on the bipartisan budget that passed both chambers of Connecticut’s legislature last week.
However, come 2019 Malloy will no longer be calling the shots. A new person will take his place.
To that end, Reclaim Connecticut reached out, via email, to 15 major gubernatorial campaigns (10 Republicans, five Democrats). We asked all of them two questions: “If you were governor today, would you sign the budget that passed the Senate and the House this week? Why or why not?”
As of Monday afternoon, we received six responses. Here they are.
MARK LAURETTI (REPUBLICAN)
Mark Lauretti, the mayor of Shelton, said that the budget “wouldn’t have gotten to this point” if he were governor.
“There would have to be structural changes built into the way we pay for services,” Lauretti said. “I realize you can’t do everything at once, but there would have been some of that.”
“It’s positive that Republicans and Democrats sat down and worked out something that provided certainty,” Lauretti added.
But, he said, the “extra money” made available in this budget is part of the problem.
“There’s one thing that I would have done, very clearly: communicate to everyone that, at a minimum, there would be no extra money available for anyone unless of course emergency situations require it,” Lauretti said. “This is the problem with the one-size-fits-all approach.”
PRASAD SRINIVASAN (REPUBLICAN)
Rep. Prasad Srinivasan (R-Glastonbury), said he would have signed the budget. This response was notable, in part, because Srinivasan voted against the budget.
If I was the Governor today, I would sign this budget. The writing is clear on the wall and we have to accept the inevitable. The budget has more than enough votes in both chambers to override the Veto. It would be even more embarrassing to have the override. I would not take the option of doing nothing, which effectively becomes a law.
Srinivasan added he would have worked with the legislature “on a consistent, consistent basis, always in conversation with them to insure that together we come up with a budget that is acceptable.”
DAVE WALKER (REPUBLICAN)
Dave Walker pointed us to his Facebook page, where he released a statement calling the budget “a significant accomplishment and a defacto bi-partisan rejection of Gov. Malloy’s proposed fiscal approach.”
Independent budget projections show that despite this agreement, large and growing structural deficits lie ahead for the state of CT.
The next Governor will have to provide long-missing leadership to acheive significant tax, regulatory, compesation/ benefits, welfare, education, infastructure and other needed reforms.
PETER LUMAJ (REPUBLICAN)
A Lumaj campaign aide sent Reclaim Connecticut a statement that, while Lumaj “applaud[s] the hard work put in by Legislative leadership,” he “still believe[s] that this budget is a bad deal for Connecticut.”
Lumaj highlighted “$1 Billion in new spending – just to keep the lights on,” calling it “an unsustainable path.”
TONI BOUCHER (REPUBLICAN)
State Sen. Toni Boucher (R-Wilton), who voted for the budget and noted she is currently exploring a campaign for governor, said she “would not have a budget like the one just negotiated and passed.”
It would be vastly different. We would have reclaimed CT and set the wheels in motion to change the policies that are ruining our great state. My number 1 focus of a future budget would be to reignite the economy and grow jobs which will grow the tax base. Taxpayer and business friendly tax policy will drive our recovery and make CT competitive again
Boucher suggested the budget has some positives – “a constitutional spending cap, a bonding cap, new ECS formula … it also stopped taxes on income, sales, cell phone use, restaurants, second homes, hotels, tolls” – she said “it is not the budget Republicans passed in the senate and house.”
Reclaim Connecticut will add any campaigns that reach out to us after the publishing of this article.
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