Although both the governor’s mansion and the state Senate could end up in either Republican or Democratic hands, Connecticut’s delegation to Congress will likely continue to be under firm Democratic control.
U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., is running for a second term as the state’s junior senator and currently holds a comfortable 15-point lead over his Republican opponent, Hartford-based window washer and bar owner Matthew Corey. Meanwhile, Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-New Haven, is running for her 15th term representing Connecticut’s third congressional district against Marine Corps veteran Angel Cadena.The two also faced off in the 2016 election where DeLauro garnered 69 percent of the vote. The congressional delegation also includes Sen. Richard Blumenthal LAW ’73, D-Conn., who is up for reelection in 2022, as well as four other Democratic representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives.
“Working people are struggling in jobs that do not pay them enough to live on,” DeLauro said in a statement to the News. “I am hopeful that Democrats will win here in Connecticut and will take back the House so we can implement an agenda that works for them — not the special interests and corporate lobbyists.”
As a graduate of Williams College and the University of Connecticut School of Law, Murphy started his career in the Connecticut General Assembly as a member of the state House of Representatives from 1999 to 2003 continuing as a state senator from 2003 to 2007. At the age of 39, he became the youngest senator of the 113th Congress in 2013 after replacing incumbent Joe Lieberman ’64 LAW ’67.
A member of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party, Murphy was one of the first members of Congress to oppose U.S. involvement in Saudi military action in Yemen and is the ranking Democratic member of the Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee on the Middle East and counterterrorism. He also has an F rating from the National Rifle Association as a result of his frequent speeches in favor of greater gun control. Additionally, following the Orlando nightclub shooting in 2016, Murphy staged a filibuster on gun control that ranks among the top 10 longest filibusters in U.S. history.
However, unlike some other Democratic candidates for U.S. Senate, including Texas Democrat Beto O’Rourke, he has not called for the Senate to impeach President Donald Trump if Democrats take control of Congress.
“I may disagree with much of the way the president conducts himself and with the manner in which he runs the White House, but he was elected,” Murphy said in his sole debate with his Republican challenger Matthew Corey on Oct. 30. “He was elected with the full knowledge on behalf of the country that he was going to be a very different kind of president.”
A Navy veteran and former truck driver, Corey founded a high-rise window-washing company in Hartford in 1990 and opened McKinnon’s Irish Pub in the state capital in 2002.
Having given Trump an “A” for job performance during the debate in October, Corey has advocated for a greater crackdown on radical Islam and illegal immigration. He has also called for deregulation of the healthcare industry and a reduction in the size of the federal government.
Corey “is the working class and is for the working class of Connecticut,” according to his campaign website.
An Oct. 30 Quinnipiac poll put Murphy ahead in his race by 15 points. He leads Corey 56 to 41 percent among likely voters, compared to 57 to 42 percent in an Oct. 10 poll.
The dean of Connecticut’s congressional delegation, DeLauro was first elected to Congress in 1990 after working as the executive director of EMILY’s List — a political action committee that aims to help elect pro-choice Democratic female candidates.
Since her first election, DeLauro has been reelected 13 times — each time with at least 63 percent of the vote.
A founding member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and chair of the appropriations subcommittee — which is in charge of funding the FDA — DeLauro has introduced bills to improve cancer research and women’s health policies.
“Over the past two years, I helped secure funding increases for vital programs that help working families and the middle class — from job training programs and educational initiatives to nutrition assistance for seniors and child care,” DeLauro said.
Her Republican rival, Cadena — a Southern Connecticut State University graduate and a Marine Corps veteran — has centered his campaign around extending the I-91 across the Long Island Sound and creating the first hyperloop corridor through New Haven from Boston to Washington, D.C.
The third congressional district, which includes New Haven, Middletown, Stratford and several other towns in south-central Connecticut, is considered the second most Democratic district in the state and has voted for Democratic presidential candidates by a margin of at least 14 points in every election since 2000. The most Democratic district is Connecticut’s first congressional district which encompasses Bristol, Hartford and Torrington.
In Connecticut’s first congressional district race, Democratic incumbent John Larson, D-Hartford, will face off against Republican candidate Jennifer Lye and Green Party candidate Tom McCormick.
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