Growing up as an athlete, The Shad learned that when you lose, you do so gracefully, knowing you gave a good effort (yes, we kept score and not everyone got a trophy). But we usually waited until we actually lost before reacting. Would-be “Malloy Foe and Status Quo Party” candidate Jonathan Pelto has already turned crybaby over his petitions to get on the ballot, threatening a lawsuit if he comes up short.
Pelto thinks some of the signatures he submitted were unfairly rejected. He needs 7,500 signatures of registered voters in the state to get on the ballot in his quest to knock Dan Malloy out of office. There’s no doubt local registrars, who determine whether a signature is valid, get it wrong sometimes. That’s why petitioning candidates submit a good amount more than what is required. Pelto is clearly thinking that he submitted just enough names to get on the ballot and if some are rejected, he’s toast and he’ll have to go back to defending the current education system in the state. That’s the system with the highest achievement gap in the nation and an embarrassing drop-out rate.
So what happens if Pelto doesn’t make the ballot? Like many in our litigious society, if things don’t go his way, he’ll sue. It’s kind of sad that a candidate who has no chance of winning would turn to the courts if he comes up short, wasting the courts time and money.
However, as The Shad written many times, Pelto’s goal is not to win. It’s to try to yank enough votes away from Malloy so that he loses. The gubernatorial race was so close in 2010 (Malloy won by less than 7,000 votes) that if the rematch is a squeaker, it could make a difference.
It’s interesting to note that if anyone had a reason to go to court because things break his way, it was Republican Tom Foley in 2010. He didn’t just lose by a small margin. He certainly could have claimed that the voting mess in Bridgeport should be examined before Malloy was declared the winner.
They actually ran out of ballots in the Park City, voting hours were extended and the reverse 911 system was used to let people know they could still vote even though polls were closed in the rest of the state.
To Foley’s credit, he took the loss gracefully at the time. Pelto should take a cue from that and accept it if he doesn’t make the ballot.
State Secretary of State Denise Merrill says the signature counting won’t be done until the end next week. That gives Pelto plenty of time to whine about the system.