Saying it’s his “single highest priority,” Democrat-endorsed gubernatorial candidate Dan Malloy is out with a 12-point plan to create and maintain jobs in Connecticut. And in the spirit of the campaign season, the plan was immediately panned by rival candidate Ned Lamont.

Malloy unveiled his unfortunately titled “road map” plan yesterday in Danbury. It relies heavily investment in research and development that he says could create 30,000 direct job and 70,000 more in spinoff jobs. He also called for a “hands-on business recruitment effort” that will be similar to the steps that Malloy took in Stamford during the 14 years he served there as mayor. “What will matter most in the years ahead is leadership,” Malloy said. “What Connecticut deserves from its next governor is experience, vision, and the ability to listen and lead.” The last comment seemed aimed at Lamont who has never held an elective office of statewide significance.

Lamont fired back. “Back in March, I introduced a detailed plan to create jobs and grow our economy, and that will be my top priority as Connecticut’s next governor,”’ Lamont said. “It’s now June, and I’m glad to see Dan coming forward with an outline of his ideas for job creation. But it seems like career politicians are always presenting ‘road maps’ or calling for study groups. Connecticut needs a governor who thinks outside the Hartford mind-set, someone with real-world business experience who knows what our small businesses need to start growing and hiring again,” he said.

Lamont touts his plan in a TV ad that is still running. While he (rightly) mocks terms like “road map,” his plan calls for an “economic SWAT team” to keep business in the state. The imagery of pocket-protector-wearing bean counters wielding M-16s is no more appealing.

Malloy, meanwhile, is readying his first TV ad. It’s significant because Lamont has spent millions of his own money on TV spots and has failed to put more distance between himself and Malloy in the polls and Malloy has more than $2 million in public financing and has yet to air any ads.

Unfortunately, Malloy campaign manager Dan Kelly is using the ad as a ploy to get people to join Malloy’s Facebook page. In a letter circulated yesterday, Kelly writes, “I’ve got some great news. I just saw our first TV ad and I’m excited to tell you that it will be on the air shortly.

“Want to see the ad before it goes on the air? You can see it on our facebook fan page. Please join our facebook page to see our new ad as soon as we go live. It’s not up yet, but I’ll post it there first.”

Either show to us or don’t. Don’t make people sign up in some phony show of support to see it. The Shad (who has great admiration for Malloy and his leaderships skills) will wait until it airs and then give an honest assessment.