Letters to the Editor: Election 2020 

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[Note: NewCanaanite.com through Oct. 21 will publish Election 2020 endorsement letters from New Canaan residents for candidates seeking to represent the town.]

To the Editor,

Schools are open. Some kids are in school and some are at home. Teachers are doing their best to meet the needs of all the kids, to keep them safe, to make them feel loved, and to make sure they have the best educational experience possible.

Most of those teachers, I’m sure, would rather be at home, completely safe from exposure to COVID. Teachers are our new front line workers, our new heroes, and they need every bit of support we can give them.

They need a State Representative who respects them. They need a State Representative who believes they have earned every cent they are paid, and who believes that retired teachers are entitled to the pensions they have paid for and earned.

They need Lucy Dathan for State Rep. She is the teachers’ representative. She cares about our kids.

BJ Markus

New Canaan

***

New Canaan needs your help getting our local needs here in New Canaan better represented in Hartford. Regardless of how you vote at the national level, our local needs are a totally different kettle of fish—Fred Wilms will work to insure that those policies that are the flavor of the moment at the national level do not override our local New Canaan interests. 

Fred will vote against school regionalization; against Connecticut’s overly generous public service union giveaways which are hurting Connecticut’s ability to attract new business (Connecticut’s current union benefit packages are not miserly, in fact, they are among the most generous in the nation, well ahead of many other high tax states); Fred will vote against the neutering of our local zoning regulations; and against those who want to over regulate our local police force. 

Fred will vote for policies to protect those afflicted with opioid addictions, disabilities, and alcohol and drug challenges; for balanced budgets which do not have hidden escape clauses, Fred will vote for union benefits which are inline with those of most other states; for reallocating funding away from special interest’s priorities to our schools and more needy populations; for protecting our local BOE and other town bodies abilities to make decisions reflecting how we prioritize our local needs (we don’t dictate how Hartford or other big cities should address their needs, or what their priorities should be); and he supports solar and wind power initiatives and related public policies such as allowing Tesla electric cars to be sold in Connecticut.

Your vote can make a difference in restoring a proper balance between local control and Hartford’s one size fits all approach. Vote for Fred Wilms on November 3rd. 

Gene Goodman

***

Dear Editor,

Our unhinged President has called upon Republicans to “secure our election” (“Army for Trump,” Hartford Courant, Oct. 10). The head of Connecticut’s Republican party has enthusiastically taken up the cause and is rallying volunteers to go to the polls presumably for the purpose of intimidating voters. Calculated use of lies, fear, and division are nothing new for this President, whose rhetoric and disregard of democratic norms I’ve not heard Republican challengers Ryan Fazio, Fred Wilms, Kim Healy, or Representative Tom O’Dea condemn.

When every Republican Senator bar one acquitted Trump of impeachment charges earlier this year, it is likely that the Republican Senators who found him innocent did so out of expediency, following the dictates of the Republican establishment at the expense of their responsibility to uphold justice. This grip Trump has on Republican officials extends to those state and municipal Republicans whose silence tells us they are unconflicted about the degradation of our democratic process and rule of law resulting from Trump’s words and deeds.

This is why I encourage you to re-elect Lucy Dathan, Will Haskell, Alex Kasser, and Jim Himes. They have been unequivocal in their condemnation of Trump’s most divisive actions, AND—far from “fiddling while CT burns” as Republican candidates would have us believe—they have gotten results:

Alex Kasser introduced bills to adopt shared-risk pension plans and to require full pension funding. Lucy Dathan has worked on increasing access to health care to all Connecticut residents, mental health parity, ending surprise billing, and other barriers to make affordable and comprehensive care a reality. Will Haskell co-sponsored new laws on gun reform, college affordability, and environmental protections that all got signed into law.

Lucy, Will, Alex, and Jim have both the proven leadership and integrity to keep all of us moving forward. Please join me in supporting them on November 3rd.

Sincerely,

  1. Victor Alvarez

***

We hear a lot about the national election, but it is the local election that will greatly affect our daily lives. It is the local election that will determine the education and educational choices for our children, the safety of our community, and whether we can afford to live here.

In November, I will support Ryan Fazio for State Senate representing the 36th District because he falls on the right side of these important issues: 

  • He supported schools opening safely (his opponent did not), and he will continue to support academic excellence for every child. 
  • He supports our local police and knows that reform should happen on a local level and not in a one-size-fits-all bill that ultimately challenges our safety. (His opponent voted passionately for the Police Accountability Bill.)
  • Ryan will not raise taxes and he will work to improve our government so that our economy can thrive. (His opponent broke a campaign promise and raised taxes.)

There is magic in community (our town in particular is a very special place) and that is why we chose New Canaan to live and raise our family. Our police work hard to keep all residents safe, the local government makes sure life is affordable for all and taxes are in check, and this fall, our schools opened safely. 

Now we need leaders in Hartford who will listen and fight for our right to keep our community vibrant and safe. 

Please join me and vote for Ryan Fazio for State Senate. 

Sincerely, 

Laurel Carlson

***

There are any number of ways to evaluate how well a state’s legislature is functioning. One that is important to me in this day and age is how it supports women’s rights and opportunities. Turns out, Connecticut is the 2nd best in the nation, just fractionally behind Massachusetts.

This is no accident. Neither is the fact that the Democratically controlled states fared the best overall and the Republican controlled states the worst.

Here in New Canaan we have three of the best and brightest, most dedicated and hardest working legislators anywhere in Lucy Dathan, Alex Kasser, and Will Haskell. They have fought for a number of issues–not just support for our wives and mothers, our sisters and daughters, our grand and great grand daughters—they have fought for issues that make Connecticut one of the safest, cleanest states to live in. One of the most desirable to relocate to. Also, one with some of the best overall health care and Covid response plans.

I am not supporting these three great candidates because of their party. Nor, because they are the incumbents. I am supporting them because of the strong job they have done on our behalf so far in so many ways, and because we need them to continue working for us in the days to come. I know all three of them personally and in over three decades of studying, working with and for elected officials across the country, I can say they do not come any better.

Craig Donovan

***

Dear Editor,

During COVID-19, State Rep Lucy Dathan’s first priority is to keep her constituents healthy. Rep. Dathan doubled down on efforts to protect us with quality healthcare as Vice-Chair of the Insurance Committee, and as member of both the Human Services and Appropriations Committees. She also had the opportunity to ensure the effective implementation of Medicare for Connecticut residents through her seat on the Medical Assistance Program Oversight Council (MAPOC).

Rep. Dathan has co-sponsored and passed insurance coverage for telehealth visits; capped Diabetes medications and supplies at $100 a month; supported allowing absentee ballots for all during the pandemic; and co-sponsored legislation to create a program to import drugs from Canada safely, where residents save an average of 50% on prescriptions.

Lucy is committed to making Connecticut more affordable for seniors. She introduced and passed a bill to make Social Security, pensions, and annuities exempt from state income tax. Social security income, pensions, and investments began to be phased out from the state income tax and will be 100% state tax free by 2025, allowing seniors to keep more of our hard-earned money.

Lucy supported the Connecticut Council of Municipalities Prescription Drug Discount Card, which has saved residents tens of thousand of dollars a year. She will continue to support seniors at the state level and those programs and services which help us most. Vote for Lucy on November 3rd.

Susan Edmands

***

I am endorsing Senator Will Haskell for re-election as he has done a really good job in Hartford. When Will first ran for this seat two years ago, I and many others were very skeptical about someone so young and lacking in life’s experience filling this very important seat of State Senate. After all, he challenged an incumbent who was and still is quite powerful and highly respected having been in politics for as long as Mr. Haskell has been on the face of this Earth. But, Will persisted and got elected and when he started in office one of his first statements was “I will learn from my constituents rather than just learn from my colleagues”. This is what he did, attempting to meet one on one with as many of his constituents form his rather large district. I had the good fortune and honor to join Will for breakfast one morning and can say, when you speak he listens. Senator Haskell tried to learn the needs of senior citizens, the disabled, veterans, business people, students, parents and many others.

Will Haskell’s record speaks for itself, by serving on the following: 

  • Senate Chair of the Higher Education and Employments Advancement Committee
  • Vice Chair of the Government Administration and Elections Committee
  • Environment, Judiciary and Transportation Committees

 Some of the laws he introduced or strongly debated for have been:

No excuse absentee voting, Combating gun violence, Small Business Assistance, Student Loan Assistance, Antiracial and gender discrimination justice, Health care, And much more.

Senator Haskell is the youngest member of the State’s General assembly. In 2019 he was named to Forbes’ 30 under 30 List. Vote for Will Haskell for a better Connecticut.

Respectfully submitted,

Bernard Simpkin

New Canaan

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