Thanks to the behind-the-scenes involvement of Governor Dannel Malloy and some of Connecticut’s power elite, on Monday, July 27, 2015 the Hartford Democratic Town Committee endorsed Luke Bronin to be the Democratic Party’s nominee for Mayor rather than sticking with Democratic incumbent Mayor, Pedro Segarra.
That same day, Dorothy Bronin of Stamford and Andrew and Rita Bronin of Greenwich each wrote $2,000 checks made out to the Hartford Democratic Town Committee.
Over the following weeks, donors from Greenwich, Connecticut dropped another $15,500 into the Hartford Democratic Town Committee’s coffers. An additional $13,000 arrived from New Yorkers, $8,000 from California donors and large donations from individuals in Nevada, Pennsylvania and Florida added at least $8,000 more. Most of the checks were written for the maximum allowable contribution of $2,000 per person and many had already given the maximum legal amount to Luke Bronin’s campaign committee.
Although the Hartford Democratic Party reported no itemized contributions from January 1, 2015 through July 24, 2015, according to the Committee’s most recent campaign finance report that was filed earlier this week with the Connecticut State Elections Enforcement Commission, the Hartford Democrats have raised more than $84,000 raised since Party establishment refused to support the city’s incumbent Puerto Rican Mayor and replaced him on the Democratic Party line with a wealthy, privileged candidate from Greenwich who has never run for office or been involved in municipal government.
The massive influx of campaign cash is particularly telling since over the past five election cycles, the Hartford Democratic Town Committee has never spent more than about $16,000 in a local campaign year.
Campaign Contributions flowing through the HARTFORD DEMOCRATIC TOWN COMMITTEE
|Campaign Year||Campaign War Chest|
In addition to the massive level of donations from out-of-state contributors, the Hartford Democratic Town Committee has also received more than $10,500 from wealthy donors who live in West Hartford and thousands more from campaign contributors in other wealthy suburban communities. State contractors and state lobbyists also wrote out large checks to the Hartford Democrats following their endorsement of Bronin.
Of the money spent by the Hartford Democratic Town Committee so far this fall, most of it appears to have gone toward Bronin’s “Get-Out-The-Vote” effort on primary day including $10,725.50 to an organization called Voices of Women of Color and $5,150 to Angel Morales who has faced a myriad of arrests, convictions and legal problems while serving as the Hartford Democratic Town Committee’s Secretary, an aide for the Connecticut Senate Democrats, a candidate for the legislature and a campaign worker in Hartford.
Considering a number of the largest donors to the Hartford Democratic Town Committee also gave the largest allowable contributions to Bronin’s own campaign committee, Bronin’s political operation was able to use a campaign finance loop hole to collect as much as $3,500 per person rather than the $1,500 per person that is allowed under Connecticut State Law.
With nearly $1 million raised as of two weeks ago and the majority of those funds coming from state contractors, lobbyists, out-of-state donors and contributors from his home town of Greenwich, Luke Bronin’s campaign for Mayor of Hartford had already become the most expensive mayoral campaign in state history.
Like Governor Dannel Malloy, Luke Bronin is making a mockery of Connecticut’s campaign finance laws.
Not surprisingly, Luke Bronin and Dannel Malloy have the same set of campaign advisers and many of the same campaign donors, contributors who appear perfectly willing to do as directed to provide the two candidates with campaign donations that far exceed what state law intended to be legally appropriate.
Check back for more about on the state contractors, lobbyists and big money donors who have been pouring money into Malloy and Bronin’s campaign operations.