Bradley, Bridgeport incumbents win legislative races
BRIDGEPORT — As a band played in the background, state Senator-elect Dennis Bradley posed for some photos with supporters at his victory party at the Cuban Club on Fairfield Avenue.
Bradley is not just a freshman member of General Assembly, but the freshman of Bridgeport’s legislative delegation, whose incumbents also easily won victory Tuesday.
“We all won very convincingly. Very convincingly,” said state Rep. Christopher Rosario.
Besides Rosario and Bradley, state Sen. Marilyn Moore and state Reps. Andre Baker, Jack Hennessy, Ezequiel Santiago, Charlie Stallworth and Steve Stafstrom all bested Republican opponents.
That was hardly unexpected in reliably blue Bridgeport, where voter turnout, according to the candidates and other political insiders, was particularly impressive. And that turnout certainly helped Bradley and Moore whose districts include some surrounding suburban towns.
Bridgeport voters are so reliable that even when a candidate gets caught up in controversy, as has been the case with Bradley, he or she is still a likely winner. Bradley was recently denied a $95,710 state campaign grant after election watchdogs concluded he broke the rules for participating in the so-called clean elections program.
But Bradley had already raised and spent nearly $102,000 — not including thousands of dollars the independent Build CT organization spent backing him — against a self-funded Republican who only planned on shelling out around $1,500.
Bradley on Tuesday said he has long-desired to serve in the General Assembly and “I appreciate the opportunity to go up there to Hartford and make a difference.” He replaces retiring Democratic state Sen. Ed Gomes and bested Gomes’ aide, Aaron Turner, in a summer primary.
Gomes, like Moore, is considered more of an independent, while Bradley has the support of the city’s Democratic machine.
A quick walk down Fairfield Avenue from the Cuban Club, Stafstrom was celebrating his return to Hartford having won about 79 percent of the vote. Stafstrom’s acknowledged his district, which includes the historic Black Rock neighborhood, can be a little more competitive for Republicans.
But that was certainly not the case in Black Rock Tuesday, according to Stafstrom: “I got about 79 percent of the vote.”
“I know our House delegation works very well together and I’m looking forward to having Dennis. He’s an exciting addition.”