July 27, 2009

Democrats emerge united behind Ward

Two years after a bitter primary fight that left many party regulars sour, the Democrats united Monday to back a second term for Mayor Art Ward.
“We had a fractured party” in 2007, said city Councilor Cliff Block, but now the Democrats have come together.
Ward said he expects times to remain tough for the next term, but “there’s hope out there” that the tide may turn. “We have to keep looking for that sunshine,” the mayor said.
The party endorsed all of its incumbents who are seeking reelection and four new City Council hopefuls aiming to fill seats held by Republicans or by Democrats who are stepping down in November.
The only contest at Monday’s nominating convention came in the 2nd District, where three men vied for two slots. The party backed incumbent Kevin McCauley, a city firefighter, and history teacher Allen Marko.
Former city Councilor Tom Ragaini, who lost by a hair, said a primary wouldn’t help the Democrats so he doesn’t plan to challenge the decision.
“I don’t want to split the party,” he said.
The Democrats rallied unanimously behind city Treasurer Bill Veits’ bid for a second term in the part-time post he won in 2007 after long-time Treasurer Patti Ewen retired. Veits faces Republican Rose Parenti, who owns a computer company.
In the 1st District, the party endorsed first-term incumbent Cliff Block and newcomer Kevin Fuller.
Fuller, a technology specialist in the school system, called himself “an average Joe” who can think outside the box. He vowed to push the city to consider wind power options.
Block and Fuller will face Republicans Mike Rimcoski, a council veteran, and newcomer Eldianne Bishop.
McCauley and Marko in the 2nd District -- who garnered 10 and 11 votes, respectively, to Ragaini’s 9 -- face GOP contenders Ken Cockayne, who is seeking a second term, and newcomer Richard Scarola.
Marko promised to push for rail service to the city and to preserve municipal services.
McCauley said he’ll offer a trusted voice and proven leadership.
In the 3rd District, where two incumbent Democrats are stepping down, the party tapped a long-time activist, Terry Parker, and newcomer Kate Matthews.
Matthews, a lawyer who billed herself as a hard-working fiscal conservative, said she’ll make sure there’s no waste and that the city pinches every penny.
Parker, a state records supervisor, said that victory in November will come from hard work “not because we say we’re Democrats.” He said he and Matthews will make “a great team.”
They’ll face Republicans Dave Mills and Derek Czenczelewski.
Ward took office in 2007 after defeating a tough GOP challenger, Ken Johnson, and knocking off the party’s endorsed candidate, Ellen Zoppo, in a primary.
The 2007 race was wide open because the incumbent, Republican William Stortz, opted not to seek reelection. He won the job in 2005 by ousting Democratic Mayor Gerard Couture.
With the exception of Stortz, who has held the city’s top job in both the early 1990s and again before Ward’s victory, the GOP hasn’t had a mayoral winner in more than a quarter century.
But the Republicans have been competitive since former Mayor Frank Nicastro, a Democrat, stepped down after a decade in office in 2003.
City Councilors and the mayor serve two-year terms. Councilors earn $10,000 annually while the mayor gets $100,000. The election is November 3.

Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
Contact Steve Collins at scollins@bristolpress.com


Anonymous said...

Would have been an interesting race between Stortz and Ward.

Too bad the Republicans don't have a winning mentality.

Anonymous said...

And too bad Stortz is just mental.

As a Republican I think Bill would have given Art a good run for his money, but would we have a better city because of it? I think not.

If you look at the last 3 administrations - Coture, Stortz, and Ward, you won't see any differences. Just because one has an R and the other has a D doesn't mean one is better than the other. Nothing is getting done anywhere in this town. It's not because a certain party controls council, or because our employees are unionized or our people are poor. It's not because we don't have a Republican in office. It's because we don't have any LEADERS in office.

Gill is organized, efficient, effective and intelligent. He may not win, and may not wear khaki pants with little embroidered animals on them, but appears to be a better leader than any of our last 3 mayors. Give him a chance, unless you're truly happy with the status quo.

Anonymous said...

12:01 How in the hell do you figure Gill is "a better leader than any of our last 3 mayors?" All he's done so far is insult some city council members and spout typical campaign rhetoric. We don't know jack about him and it appears he knows the same about us.

GGG - Gill's gotta go!

Anonymous said...

Actually, Gill does wear clothes with little embroidered animals on them. It's in a Bristol Press picture from nomination night.

Anonymous said...

Stortz would have lost. Stortz is only good in his own mind.

Anonymous said...

Guess you haven't been paying close attention.
Couture, with all his faults did take a major step in acquiring the MAll. Maybe didn't do it right, but he did do it!. And he led the charge in starting clean up the city. He also inherited Nicatro's failure to maintain the city.

Stortz redirected the Mall effort, but ha dto overcome some issues with it that he inherited. And the effort is now delayed mainly because of the economy. Ironically, as a city worker I an aware of many of the good things that Stortz did with the budget and organizationaly within City Hall, good things that did not get publicized.
Ward is faced with the economy. Like the others, he could have done more, could do more, but HE is there doing something. Where are you?
Cheap shot at Stortz: like the person that threw the brick thru his window, you hide in the dark!
Lastly, whow wears Khakis with animals?

Anonymous said...

Dear 3:08:

I think you just made his point for him... Couture acquired the mall incorrectly, with Ward as his Deputy Mayor!

Bill did good things organizationally and with the budget, yet we keep talking about raising taxes and stealing from the rainy day fund - must not have been effective moves.

Ward is faced with the economy? So is everyone else, right? Yet he gives pay raises and makes promises that can't be kept.

None of these 3 men were leaders.

12:01 is right...Bill always wears khakis with lobsters or turtles or dogs embroidered on them. Usually with sweaters.

I think they're from J. Crew, which is the only thing about him that is current.

think said...

I love the part about gill being a leader, the only thing that he has done is switch from being a democrat to being a republican so that he could run for mayor. has anyone checked to see if he even votes in our elections?

Anonymous said...

"None of these 3 men were leaders."

...and you think this inexperienced, unseasoned, unknown guy is? Okee dokey...maybe you shouldn't believe everything your crazy 8 ball tells you.

Mr. Gill hasn't earned the right to carry these gentleman's jock straps.

Anonymous said...

Never saw Bill with Khakis and animals. You clearly are confused.

He also did increase the rainy day funs while providing more funding for infrastructure maintenance.

And he reduced OT significantly!

Anonymous said...

Who in your mind is or was leader?

Be nice to see what people have to live up to.

And the only trousers that Bill wore that were unusual were his Christmas courdoroys, which just about everyone thought were great.

But if those are all you can pick on, I'd say Bill was doing alright.

Anonymous said...

I gotta chuckle.

Stortz must be sitting at home, laughing his arse off, reading all these comments about him.
He isn't running(as of now), don't recall that he said he was, doesn't semm to be part of the republican hierarchy, and yet he getting tremendous coverage on this blog.

And he must be laughing especially hard over some of the inane and more than likely inaccurate comments.
Including his clothes.

Ironically, this is all being done by people with no names, but Bill is on of the few that puts letters in the paper, WITH HIS NAME.

Anonymous said...

Ward is not such the nice guy people make him out to be - ask a few he has really seared. Ward uses people for his own gain.


Anonymous said...

McCauley say's "proven leadership"

I was laughing so hard I couldn't stop. He's such a puppet its not funny.

Please stop...i'm going to pee in my pants

Anonymous said...

Hey Tom,

Ward actually is a nice guy - ask some of the people he's helped. We're all looking forward to supporting him in the coming election (again).


shorter name? said...

10:51 - you dropped the C?

Anonymous said...

McCauley is a professional seat warmer - he does nothing on that council.

Anonymous said...

12:54 - ignorance is bliss - isn't Fred. One day you will wake up from this fairy tale dream of yours. Right now I guess parking in Ward's butt suits you.

~ Tom

Anonymous said...

3:24 pm: What makes you qualified to say that McCauley "does nothing" on the council? Are you tapping his phone? Do you attend any of the committees that he chairs? Were you with him at Marine Court the other day, enforcing the worst piece of residential blight in Bristol (and it isn't even his council district)?

Maybe you're holding him to the Ward standard (minimum of three photo ops per week) or the Rimcoski standard (at least two feel-good but brain-dead motions per council meeting, but never for a committee that he is on).

uptight said...

12:54 sounds so strung out, needs to chill.

Anonymous said...

Tom, Tom, Tom,

I'm not sure about ignorance being bliss, but you do seem to be quite familiar with it, so I'll defer to your expertise.

You're entitled to your opinion. Please don't insult me for having my own.



Anonymous said...

Who is Gill? Where's he been ? On here with you jerks?

Anonymous said...

11:32 Ya probably already did because I don't think your potty trained yet!

Anonymous said...

Boy you Ward huggers are nasty. Always putting opinions down from others - Ward does not walk on water as you all seem to think he can.

Anonymous said...

"What makes you qualified to say that McCauley "does nothing""

Ya 3:24! You're wrong about McCauley. We all know the he always does exactly what he is told to do!

Anonymous said...

7-28 9:00AM

Right On!!!

Anonymous said...

12:39 PM (Tom, that you?)

"Ward huggers" (cute)? My, my, I do believe that's one of those nasty "put downs" of other peoples' opinions that you were whining about.

No one said anything about Ward walking on water. (Actually, twisting someone's words around would be...yes, another put down!).

It is my opinion, awww heck...never mind. You'll probably just call me nasty and put me down...

Have a nice day anyway!

Anonymous said...

3:02pm - how about putting your name instead of using Anonymous. No I am not a Tom. My name is Carrie. I will not put my last name because I don't care to have people like you bashing me for something I noticed while reading this blog. Try and have a nice day!


Anonymous said...

Carrie dear,

You call me a "nasty ward hugger" and then worry about ME bashing YOU? Sweetie, you really are confused.


Anonymous said...

1:11pm - sweetie went out in the 80's - get over yourself. leave the poor girl alone.