State Senate Majority Leader Marty Looney is backing former Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy in the race for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination. Looney, from New Haven, is considered to be among the state senate’s smartest, most-respected and accomplished members.

Interestingly, Looney has broken with Senate President Don Williams and New Haven Mayor John DeStefano, who both back Greenwich millionaire Ned Lamont. Looney said there is a clear choice. “Only one [candidate] of them has been the successful mayor of one of our largest cities for the past 14 years,” Looney said, referring to Malloy, the former mayor of Stamford. “Only one candidate is ready to tackle issues like the budget crisis and schools on the first day in the job.”