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Sound Bites: Connecticut primary elections are Tuesday

Molly Ingram

Good morning. Tuesday is primary day in three of Connecticut’s largest cities. 

  • Only residents who are registered Republican or Democrat can vote in their party’s primary election.
  • Polls in Connecticut are open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Any voter standing in line at the polls at 8 p.m. will be allowed to cast a ballot.
  • Voters do not need to show photo ID to cast a ballot   
  • Absentee ballots must arrive by mail, delivered in-person in the Town Clerk’s office, or put in a secure drop box provided to each town by 8 p.m. Tuesday to be counted.
  • Residents who voted absentee will have any in-person ballot rejected. 

Here’s a bite-sized look at what what we’re hearing:

In Bridgeport, Democrat John Gomes will challenge incumbent Mayor Joe Ganim. Gomes is a former chief administrator under Ganim before they had a falling out last year. Ganim is seeking an eighth four-year term as mayor. He was voted back into office in 2015 after spending seven years in federal prison for corruption during his first stint as mayor. Connecticut election officials say they are closing monitoring the race after three of Ganim’s 2019 campaign staffers were recommended for criminal charges this summer.

In New Haven, Democrat Liam Brennan will challenge incumbent Mayor Justin Elicker. Brennan is the city of Hartford's Inspector General and a former federal prosecutor. He also directed the Connecticut Public Corruption Task Force. Elicker seeks a third two-year term as mayor. He upset the 2019 primary beating the previous incumbent, Toni Harp. He did not face a primary challenge in 2021. Retired police sergeant Shafiq Abdussabur announced on Friday that he is no longer running for mayor.

In Hartford, three Democrats are vying to replace outgoing incumbent Mayor Luke Bronin, a Democrat. Arunan Arulampalam, CEO of the Hartford Land Bank, has the endorsement of the city’s Democratic Party committee. Eric Coleman is a former state senator and retired Superior Court judge. State Senator John Fonfara chairs the legislative finance committee. Serving for mayor of Hartford is a two-year term.

Also, Republicans in Derby will decide whether to unseat Mayor Richard Dziekan in favor of a local alderman who faces federal charges for his involvement in the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol. Gino DiGiovanni, Jr. was charged by federal prosecutors in August. He was elected alderman 10 months after the attack. While he admits to being at the Capitol that day, DiGiovanni denies any wrongdoing. He has the enforcement from the local Republican Party committee, which Dziekan did not seek. Dziekan is seeking his fourth, two-year term.

A full list of sample ballots for Tuesday’s primary elections:

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    A native Long Islander, J.D. is WSHU's managing editor. He also hosts the climate podcast Higher Ground. J.D. reports for public radio stations across the Northeast, is a journalism educator and proud SPJ member.