Opinion: A Third Party Gubernatorial Candidate Might Be Just What Connecticut Needs

Carmen L. Lopez
Special to CTLatinoNews.com
Will Rogers once famously said that: “The more you read and observe about this politics thing, you got to admit that each party is worse than the other. The one that’s out always looks the best.”
The established political machinery in Connecticut is gearing up for the November big event: the election of a governor to lead the state for the next four years.
The Democratic Party has determined that it is in its best interest to stick with the incumbent.
I have been a lifelong Democrat. My parents left Puerto Rico in the 1950s and made Bridgeport their home. They registered to vote as soon as they arrived. They registered as Democrats and when I reached the legal voting age, the first thing my dad did was make sure that I registered to vote, also as a Democrat.
After all, the Democrats were the party that celebrated the worth of the average citizen and looked out for the common person.
Sadly, the Democratic Party that I once was honored to serve in a variety of positions from delegate to national conventions, deputy counsel to the Democratic State Central Committee and in leadership positions in national, state and local Hispanic Democratic organizations, has morphed into a party which promotes corporate welfare, rather than worker’s welfare.
The Republican Party, on the other hand, isn’t quite sure whether it wants Wall Street or Main Street, diversity or uniformity, or just a chance to be relevant. It seems that it has resigned itself to be Connecticut’s perpetual minority party or, as in Bridgeport, the Democrats’ wholly- owned subsidiary.
Until very recently, those were the cards dealt to the taxpayers and residents of Connecticut, a choice between two not-very-different political parties or, as is often said, a vote for the lesser of two evils.
Enter Jonathan Pelto, a potential independent third party contender for governor.
The mere fact that he is considering forming an exploratory committee to determine if a credible third party independent campaign for governor can be organized, is creating, what we would say in Spanish, “un revolouz.”
Spoiler, extremist, and egomaniacal are some of the favorite terms used by those in possession of political power, to describe a third party candidacy. Every effort is being made to marginalize a third party opponent, from ridicule to character assassination.
It is tragic that our democracy has been so co-opted by an elite group of privileged power brokers that it cannot tolerate third party candidates.
Third parties should not be dismissed and disrespected in this manner.
They should be encouraged. Third parties force the candidates of the two major parties to confront and address issues they would rather not talk about. Third parties ask tough questions, which establishment candidates would rather not answer.
They make the major party candidates nervous, and that is always a good thing.
Issues such as the corporate control of public education, the erosion of local control, politicizing the courts and the justice system, and a disproportionate tax burden on the middle class are only a few of the issues that would be subjected to a comprehensive review and discussion with the presence of a third party candidate.
A third party candidacy in Connecticut, the Land of Steady Habits, will provide an opportunity for hope and a greater participation by many who feel as Will Rogers declared “that each party is worse than the other.”
Our Democracy is on life-support; a third party candidate can supply some much needed oxygen!
Carmen L. Lopez of Bridgeport is a retired Superior Court judge
Photo: cc.org.


10 thoughts on “Opinion: A Third Party Gubernatorial Candidate Might Be Just What Connecticut Needs

  1. UKIP (United Kingdom Independent Party) in the United Kingdom is making huge in-roads over there … why not USIP (United States Independent Party) here?!

  2. Bravo! Will Rogers was the MAN! And Jonathan Pelto is the smartest guy on Connecticut’s political scene. “Un revolouz” is exactly the way to go for Latino Voters. The Malloy administration utterly disrespected the Black and Latino caucus by having its powerful proxies in the CGA ditch their amendments without any chance to vote on them. Boo! Go Jonathan Pelto!

  3. Democrats have controlled the State Legislature since 1986. The only upside to a third party or a Republican Governor is a check and balance through veto power otherwise the rapid expansion of Gov will continue during a period of lower revenue production and an exodus of people from the workforce.

  4. Carmen Lopez thoughts echo my own perfectly. This statement rings true: “It is tragic that our democracy has been so co-opted by an elite group of privileged power brokers that it cannot tolerate third party candidates.”
    Imagine if Verizon and ATT were allowed to create laws to limit advertising, regulations and the customer base of small carriers such as Virgin, Sprint, T-Mobile, etc? Would this duopoly be known for its customer service? Providing the best prices and level of care that their customers demanded? Very much the opposite. In every case that there exist a duopoly, the customer is harmed. So too is our political system and it is the voter that is harmed.
    Like Carmen, I’ve sided with Democrats as I saw them as a lesser evil. In my early days I voted for Republicans. Since 2012, I have broken free of the fear of voting for 3rd parties. I learned about the Justice Party and I liked their candidate Rocky Anderson, (along with 5,000 other Nutmeggers) and their message of being an inclusive party. That mirrors our country in accepting people from all countries; working together to build a great nation.
    I’ll support Mr. Pelto because he symbolizes what we are in great need of — Democracy. For sure there will be Democrats yelling at him not to run and Republicans rubbing their hands in hopes that he will run. Don’t let that stop you from voting for him or other independents, Justice Party, Green Party, Socialist or Libertarians. More voices in government is needed, as we are one party away from becoming a fascist state. That thought troubles me greatly.
    Carlos Alberto Camacho, State Coordinator
    Connecticut Justice Party
    Justice for my state / Justicia para mi estado
    Justice for my town / Justicia para mi pueblo
    Justice for my life / Justicia para mi vida
    Justice for us! / Justicia para nosotros!

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