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Stefanowski And Connecticut’s Left Of Center Media

August 21, 2022
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Stefanowski and Company

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The news that Liz Kurantowitz had left Bob Stefanowski’s gubernatorial campaign was broken by Stefanowski, who announced in a press release, “Stefanowski campaign announces departure of senior advisor Liz Kurantowitz citing strategic differences.”

CTMirror’s Capitol Bureau Chief Mark Pazniokas noted in a twitter feed, “Seldom a good sign to see your campaign manager, then your senior strategist and only press contact, depart in August.”

The news release flushed left of center birds from Connecticut’s media brush,

State Capitol news reporter for the Associated Press Susan Haigh, at one time a Hartford Courant reporter, rang up former Connecticut U.S. Representative Chris Shays, now living out of state, along with many other Connecticut expats.

Shays was the last man standing in Connecticut’s once bipartisan U.S. Congressional Delegation. Three Republicans – Nancy Johnson, Rob Simmons and Chris Shays – all fiscal conservative-social liberal Republicans, have in the course of time been replaced by postmodern progressive Democrats who, in recent days, have voted in lockstep approval of President Joe Biden’s postmodern progressive foreign and domestic policy measures, little criticized by Connecticut’s left of center political commentators.

There is much to criticize in Biden’s political basket.

The president’s record on foreign policy -- however much the bright lights in the Democrat Party, allied with Connecticut’s curious yellow media, would like to smother in silence Biden’s inept foreign policy measures -- is hardly a stellar record of success. Americans in Afghanistan, left behind by Biden’s ill-fated and ill-considered hasty withdrawal from the country – some dare call it surrender – are still left behind what used to be called, justly, “enemy lines,” as are Afghanis who for twenty years allied themselves with the foreign policy objectives of four different presidents, Bill Clinton, George Bush the younger, Barak Obama and Donald Trump.

Bagram Air Base, once a U.S. watchtower overlooking China, is now more or less owned by a Chinese Communist Party-Taliban-Al-Qaida consortium. 

The U.S. Southern border is still leaching into southern states illegal aliens, and poisonous made-in-China fentanyl, and criminals prepared to conspire with other foreign criminals outside the U.S. When Texas Governor Greg Abbott recently sent a bus load of illegal aliens to New York City, home to the Statue of Liberty, Mayor of the Big Apple Eric Adams hotly protested the invasion but, under considerable pressure from the Northeast’s left of center media, later relented and received a few tempest-tossed border-jumpers into his city, plagued by crime, drugs and a police department still recovering from a political drubbing.

The chief problem with Connecticut’s GOP is that it has been for the past few decades dying from its past successes.

“Shays,” Haigh reports, “said he believes an endorsement by Trump is disqualifying. He said he contributed to the campaign of Wes Moore, the Democrat running against Cox in Maryland, and would vote for Blumenthal if he still lived in Connecticut.

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“’I will vote against anyone who seeks the support of Donald Trump because that tells me so much about their character and what they intend to do if elected. That’s the bottom line to me,’ Shays said.”

Among ideas offered to Stefanowski by Weicker-liker Dave Collins, a reporter and commentator for the Hearst chain of newspapers, is – become Weicker.

“Remember the popularity of Lowell Weicker, who made a national name for himself as the Republican senator who stood up to the Republican president… hold a press conference to trash Trump … Call him out. Shake a fist. Channel Weicker and speak to Independents [sic. unaffiliateds] …”

Senator Lowell Weicker is best known among pre-Trump Republicans as the guy who 1) voted more often with Democrats than Democrat U.S. Senator Chris Dodd, whose left-wing rating in 1986 from Americans for Democratic Action was twenty percentage points higher than Dodd’s, and who 2) was responsible for saddling Connecticut, once a haven for businesses fleeing high taxes, with an income tax, after which spending in the state nearly tripled. In 1990, Republicans, Democrats and unaffiliateds booted Weicker from the U.S. Senate by casting a plurality of votes for then Democrat Attorney General Joe Lieberman.

Then, as now, Republicans sought to put some reasonable borders on Maverick Republicans like Weicker who boasted, in order to harvest votes from Democrats, that they were “the turd in the Republican Party punchbowl.”

Many moderate Republicans, some John F. Kennedy Democrats and unaffiliateds are not happy, according to reliable polls, with “the direction in which the country has been headed” during the Biden administration.

More than a year ago, CNN, by no means a Trump echo chamber, reported “… a mere 21% of Americans think that the country is going in the right direction, according to the latest Monmouth University poll. The vast majority, 74%, said America was on the wrong track. A majority of Americans usually believe the country is on the wrong track, but it's rarely [been] this bad.”

How is it possible that Connecticut’s Democrat “party of change” has perversely refused to understand that things have changed since the Weicker-Shays years?

The past, to be sure, must always figure in responsible political analysis, but useful analysis cannot be expected from political ostriches that have their heads so deeply buried in past sands that they cannot see the future under their noses bristling with danger and throbbing with antique ideological predispositions?

Don Pesci is a political columnist of long standing, about 40 years, who has written for various state newspapers, among them The Journal Inquirer, the Waterbury Republican American, the New London Day, the Litchfield County Times, the Torrington Register Citizen and other Register Citizen papers. He maintains a blog, among the oldest of its kind in Connecticut, which serves as a repository and archive, for his columns; there are approximately 3,000 entrees in Connecticut Commentary: Red Notes From A Blue State, virtually all of them political columns stretching back to 2004. He also appears once a week Wednesdays on 1080 WTIC Newstalk radio with Will Marotti.

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