Redding Republicans Unhappy with Party Chair Labriola

They may not have gone so far as to vote “no confidence” in him as Enfield did, but the Redding Republican Town Committee is clearly unhappy with the leadership of party chairman Jerry Labriola. GOP leaders in town have “instructed” their state central party members as to “new leadership” according to town committee chairman Ward Mazzucco.

Redding RTC Chair Ward Mazzucco
Redding RTC Chair Ward Mazzucco

Mazzucco tells The Hanging Shad the committee decided not to take a public vote on its confidence in Labriola, but it was clear where they stand. “We were terribly disappointed in the [results of] the election,” Mazzucco said. “We certainly gave our state party representatives direction for use in selecting responsible leadership,” he said.

Enfield went further than Redding is willing to do. Town Chairwoman Mary Ann Turner is leading the anti-Labriola charge. “The ERTC is a very active and well informed town committee and have decided to join other Town Committees within the state with a no-confidence vote,” she wrote although declined to say what other towns did the same. “This decision did not come without considerable discussion regarding ongoing concerns with the Connecticut Republican State Central office and its current leadership. Among the reasons stated for no-confidence vote are:
– ineffective leadership, communication, and coordination of the candidate campaigns
– inability to develop a cohesive, clear and concise plan to lead the Connecticut Republicans – over the last four years
– a recent claim that the executive director was on paid leave during the height of the 2014 campaign season because; as stated, the chairman was forced by outside concerns to take such action. Thus, the executive director’s many talents to help with state representative or senate races was lost
– the lack of Republican presence in the media, the lack of leadership in the state, and the total lack of coordinated political activity on a statewide basis, which includes training, mentoring, and ‘lead from the front’ chairmanship”

Maazzucco for his part, sees the problem of getting Republicans elected as two-fold. “First, we have to stop nominating wealthy candidates who may not have the best sensibilities when it comes to getting elected,” he said. “And second, we are in a very blue state and we have to nominate moderate, popular candidates who can win.”

Labriola’s term isn’t up until June and the state party declined to try to oust him in a meeting last month.