Note: The Hanging Shad will keep you up to date on the happenings at the nominating conventions this weekend. Shad entries will occur as events warrant.
State Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz, knocked off the ballot for attorney general by a court ruling Tuesday, says she is not ruling out anything when it comes to her political future. That means it’s still possible she seeks re-election as secretary of state.
Such a move would seem nearly impossible for any other Connecticut politician under these circumstances. But Bysiewicz is not your ordinary politician. She is dogged, tenacious, relentless, some would say ruthless. “At the moment I have no immediate plans, and I have not made any decision,” she told The Associated Press. Bysiewicz said she will attend the party’s nominating convention this weekend. The Shad, in an interview with NBC Connecticut News Tuesday, refused to declare Bysiewicz politically dead saying no one should count her out until she says, “I’m out.”
If Bysiewicz does seek re-election it will put two fellow Democrats in a scramble. State Senator Jonathan Harris and House Majority Leader Denise Merrill have both been working tirelessly, trying to secure the party’s backing for Bysiewicz’ current office.
At this point, nothing would surprise The Shad given the events of the last couple days.
There’s more evidence that Richard Blumenthal will weather this military service controversy. A New York Times front-page article garnered national attention this week as it reported that Blumenthal claimed he served in the Vietnam War when in fact he was a marine reservist serving stateside during the war.
The “smoking gun” used against Blumenthal was a video from a 2008 speech in which he said “…when I served in Vietnam….” It turns out if you view the entire video—not just the clip used by the Times—Blumenthal correctly characterizes his service by saying he “served during the Vietnam era.” The Times is now on the defensive, trying to explain why it ignored the seemingly vindicating part of the video.
We finally have an answer as to whether the campaign of Republican US Senate candidate Linda McMahon was responsible for getting the dirt on Blumenthal to the Times. McMahon herself now admits the answer is yes, they did. The Shad thinks that is a major strategic blunder. It actually helps McMahon’s Republican rival Rob Simmons who did serve in Vietnam, twice. He is now getting some traction on the whole issue.
Overshadowed by the political circus that has been this past week is the fact that Governor Rell has vetoed a bill that would have helped 46,000 small businesses in the state. The brainchild of state Senate President Don Williams, the bill would have suspended the business entity tax for two years for businesses with at least one employee and a net income of less than $50,000. “Small businesses account for the vast majority of new jobs in Connecticut and this initiative would have offered help where it is needed most,” he said.
The break for small business would have been paid for with a tax on the ridiculous bonuses received by executives of corporations receiving Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP money from the government. “Our plan to compensate for the tax cut by implementing a temporary surcharge on large Wall Street bank bonuses was fair and legally sound. Unfortunately, Republicans have been determined to protect these Wall Street bonuses — their legal argument is simply a smoke screen,” Williams said.
He’s right. Since when has the Rell administration cared about whether legislation was legal or not? This is the same governor who tried to use a line-item veto on a budget she refused to sign despite the fact her own lawyers advised that such a move would be illegal.