Bysiewicz ready to challenge Murphy in Dems' Senate primary
Published 5:59 am, Wednesday, May 16, 2012
Bysiewicz, of Middletown, filed her certificate of eligibility with former co-workers at the Secretary of the State's office, putting her on a collision course Aug. 14 with 5th District U.S. Rep. Chris Murphy, the Democrats' endorsed candidate.
"Very nice to see you all," Bysiewicz said as she presented the one-page document, certifying that she won at least 15 percent of the convention's delegates, to the office's elections division at about 10:35 a.m.
Last Saturday, she received support from 24 percent of the party delegates. She anticipates a 30 percent party turnout for the primary.
Bysiewicz's intention came as no surprise to the Murphy camp. "Saturday was an overwhelming show of unity for Connecticut Democrats, and Chris is honored to earn the endorsement of the thousands of grassroots activists who are going to work hard to elect him," said Murphy spokeswoman Taylor Lavender. "Bysiewicz is known for running nasty misleading campaigns, and it looks like this one will be no different. The truth is that grassroots Democrats overwhelmingly support Chris and not Bysiewicz, because Chris is the only candidate with a proven record of fighting for our party's values."
Bysiewicz, who won a primary for the state House of Representatives in 1992 and another for Secretary of the State in 1998, said she will campaign on working for the middle class and to hold Wall Street accountable for the stagnant national economy.
"You only have to take a look at what's happened with J. P. Morgan to see how Wall Street is playing fast and loose with others people's money," she said. "I am the only candidate in this race who has a record of standing up for the middle class and taking on corporate special interests."
"We are in this terrible economic mess right now because Congress has been too cozy with Wall Street," she said. "Chris Murphy is too cozy with Wall Street."
Bysiewicz said that between corporate and financial-service interests, Murphy has collected more than half a million dollars.
Bysiewicz told reporters that party leaders did not try to dissuade her from the primary, which Democratic State Central Committee Chairwoman Nancy DiNardo said could become a drain on party fundraisers at a time when they should be saving for a well-funded Republican in November.
"Primaries are incredibly healthy for our election process because they get voters involved much earlier," Bysiewicz said, noting that while the convention was for party insiders, the primary will be open to all 700,000 state Democrats.
"We expect somewhere between 180,000 and 200,000 voters to show up, so that makes our win number somewhere between 90,000 and 100,000 voters," she said.
"I have fought all of my career in public service to fight to open up the process and give voters more choices," she said. "I think we will be able to have a conversation about who is the candidate best able to stand up to Wall Street and corporate special interests and who is the best candidate to reform Congress.