Press Releases

For Sen. Witkos, Handing Out Ribbons is Better than Taking Action to Prevent Gun Violence and Discrimination

HARTFORD, CT – Today Deputy Senate Minority Leader Kevin Witkos (R-Canton) announced to all legislators and all General Assembly staff that his office would be “handing out Pulse memory pins in honor of the 49 individuals killed in the Orlando nightclub shooting earlier this month.” (See below for full email.)

In response to the senator’s hypocrisy, Connecticut Democratic Party Executive Director Michael Mandell released the following statement:

“While we respect the gesture of handing out memory pins after such a horrific tragedy, Sen. Witkos’s offer does not match his actions. Sen. Witkos has voted to keep guns in the hands of domestic abusers and repeatedly voted against guaranteeing the legal rights of the LGBTQ community.  Handing out ribbons won’t prevent the next tragedy, and it is hypocritical to only express concern after the fact. Real action is needed to prevent discrimination and keep guns out the hands of dangerous people. Sen. Witkos and many of his Republican colleagues have failed that test far too many times – which is not surprising when the Republican Party is led by a misogynistic, reactionary and xenophobic presidential candidate in Donald Trump.”

Sen. Witkos’s long history of voting against bipartisan legislation to Connecticut citizens from discrimination and gun violence includes:

Voting again Public Act 05-10 An Act Concerning Civil Unions;

Voting against Public Act 07-938 An Act Concerning the Reporting Lost or Stolen Firearms and Illegal Firearms Trafficking;

Voting against Public Act 11-55 An Act Concerning Discrimination;

Voting against Public Act 09-13 An Act Implementing the Guarantee of Equal Protection Under the Constitution for Same Sex Couples;

Voting against Public Act No. 13-3 An Act Concerning Gun Violence Prevention and Children’s Safety; and

Voting against Public Act 16-34 An Act Protecting Victims of Domestic Violence.”

Witkos Email

CT Dems’ Reaction To SCOTUS Rulings

Hartford, Ct. – Connecticut Democratic Party Deputy Executive Director Alynn Woischke released the following statement in response to today’s Supreme Court rulings striking down Texas’s anti-abortion law and asserting that domestic assaults can be considered misdemeanors and can restrict the right of those convicted to possess firearms.

“The Whole Woman’s Health case is yet another reminder that reproductive rights continue to come under attack from Republicans across the country. From Texas’s blatant attempt to restrict a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions, to Donald Trump’s preposterous assertion that women should be punished for exercising their right to choose, the Republicans’ attacks on women’s health are relentless.

“Connecticut Republicans have shied away from making their feelings on reproductive choice known. Republican congressional candidate Clay Cope has even insinuated that, because he has neither a wife nor a daughter, he does not care about women’s health issues. This is unacceptable. With their party taking concrete steps to restrict access to safe, legal reproductive health care, Connecticut Republicans need to be very clear about exactly where they stand on women’s health issues.

“The Supreme Court also rightly decided that those convicted of domestic violence can lose the right to posses deadly weapons. This is a major victory for victims of violence, and it is a reminder that – thanks to Democrats – Connecticut is leading by keeping guns out of the hands of people under temporary restraining orders. The evidence is clear: a woman is 500 percent more likely to be killed if her abuser has access to guns. Connecticut’s new law will literally save lives.”

CT Dems’ Statement On Hillary Clinton’s Economic Speech

Hartford, Ct. – Connecticut Democratic Party Chairman Nick Balletto released the following statement in response to Hillary Clinton’s speech on moving our economy forward.

“Today Hillary Clinton made a clear case for her plans to build on the progress we have made under President Obama and foster an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top,” said Balletto. “While Secretary Clinton has outlined a vision for our nation’s future and is clearly prepared to lead on day one of her presidency, Donald Trump is simply unqualified and would do lasting damage to our economy. Trump calls himself the ‘King of Debt,’ and his tax plan shows us why: it would increase the national debt by more than $30 trillion over 20 years. Trump says he’s tough on Wall Street, but plans to strip away the very reforms ensuring that Wall Street can never threaten Main Street again. While he claims that his business record would be a positive for our economy, even Republican analyses show a Trump presidency causing a ‘lengthy recession‘ and costing the American economy 3.5 million jobs.

“It is quite clear that Donald Trump is a danger to this nation’s economy. We simply cannot afford to have Trump do to the United States what he did to Trump Airlines — or Trump Vodka, or Trump Mortgage, or Trump Casinos.

“Connecticut Republicans like legislative leaders Themis Klarides and Len Fasano need to do more to answer for their party’s nominee. I hope they will join me and Democrats from across our state in condemning his ignorance, outright racism, and the policies he has outlined that would cause an economic disaster for our state and nation. Connecticut deserves better.”

CT Dems’ Statement On Settlement Of SEEC Case

Hartford, Ct. – Connecticut Democratic Party Executive Director Michael Mandell released the following statement in response to the SEEC’s vote to approve settlement in the 2014 campaign case.

“This is a positive step forward for the Democratic Party and, more importantly, the state of Connecticut. The voluntary agreement we have entered into will clarify a fundamental legal question that we raised and pursued in order to resolve a conflicting intersection between state and federal law, and it will help ensure the continued viability of the Citizens’ Election Program going forward. We have always championed clean elections in Connecticut and will continue to do so. We hope that this agreement with the SEEC will serve as a model and that the Republican Party will join in our commitment to preserving the Citizens’ Election Program. We are glad to put this matter behind us, so that we can end any uncertainty for this election cycle and put all of our focus on the critical task of electing Democrats up and down the ticket this November.”

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