Josh LaBella – News Editor
The Mayor of Hartford and prospective democratic gubernatorial candidate Luke Bronin visited Southern last week to discuss his possibly candidacy and state issues.
According to Bronin, as mayor he has tackled the fiscal crisis of Hartford and, although, they haven’t solved it yet they have moved the ball a long way down the field. He said he thinks the state of Connecticut is at the same crossroads Hartford was three years ago.
“It will require the same kind of combination of a willingness to be truly honest and transparent about what we face and about what we can do and what we can’t do,” said Bronin. “But also, (being) really bold about what we it is that is going to put this state on a path to growth.”
Bronin said for him it will come down to three key things: stronger cities, better transportation, and better education at all levels. He said if Connecticut can do that, over the next five years or so the state will see real growth and a rebuilding of the safety net that has been chipped away.
“Getting fiscal stability back and growth back is the key, I think, to make the kind of investments that we as a state should all want to see,” said Bronin. “While, the number one job of this next governor is going to be getting this state’s economy back on track, fiscal situation fixed, and being honest and bold – I also think this race has enormous consequences nationally.”
Bronin said Connecticut has been a leader in pushing for civil rights and equality. He said there are republicans all over the country watching for Connecticut to turn red.
“We cannot let that happen,” said Bronin. “I think this is a chance to keep this state on the leading edge of resistance against the Trump administration and what they’re trying to do – chip away at American values.”
Justin Gendron, a freshman political science major, said as vice president of SCSU College Democrats he helped plan the event. He said he really like Luke Bronin’s message and thinks he is the most qualified out of a large field of candidates.
“He has his policies formulated already while others are trying to deal it out still,” said Gendron. “Even though he’s still exploratory I’m probably going to get behind him but I’m going to wait for the convention to be sure.”
Jamie Kelley, a senior history and political science major, said the College Democrats have been planning the event since the beginning of the semester. She said she felt students would be more involved if they brought candidates to them.
They could get a firsthand view and go from there,” said Kelley. “and then they could see if they wanted to continue to volunteer for candidates that they made a connection with and shared ideals with.”
Kelley said they will be hosting a number of democratic candidates throughout the month including gubernatorial candidate Guy Smith and possibly Representative Rosa DeLauro and Senator Chris Murphy. She said she liked the way that Bronin put it all out there.
“He’s exploratory, so he might not even continue to run,” said Kelley. “But I hope he does because it was very cool to hear from him and he had a lot of good points.”
Photo Credit: Josh LaBella