5 things to watch in every state: Connecticut

This is not going to be interesting for anyone, probably.  Remember that time Donald Trump spent time in Connecticut because he thought he could flip it? That was fun.

  1. Connecticut State Senate District 7:  The incumbent Republican John Kissel won re-election in 2012 by less than 500 votes.  In 2014, a much more Conservative year, in general, gave Kissel 69.5% of the vote.  He received essentially the same amount of votes in 2014 (22,160) as he did in 2012 (22,182).  The big difference is that the Democratic vote share declined from 21,674 votes to 9,704 votes.  So what happened in 2014?  Should we just assume that the normal turnout for the district is going to be 2014? Or 2012?  That’s what I’m interested in watching.
  2. Connecticut State Senate District 13: Democratic incumbent Dante Barolomeo was elected in a Presidential election year (2012) when he won by less than 300 votes over the Republican incumbent Len Suzio.  In a rematch in 2014, he won by a little more than 300 votes.  Why did Bartolomeo improve in a more conservative year overall for the electorate?  I’m sure that people with better data analysis than me could figure this out and get paid quite a bit to come up with their theories. but my guess is that Barolomeo added a “T” to his name, or so it appears on Ballotpedia.  Suzio and Bartolomeo are headed for a third straight election on November 8th.  How boring.
  3. Connecticut State Senate District 24: HAHA so there’s another Michael McLachlan in Colorado.  Ballotpedia mixed them up on their site.  ANYWAY, the Connecticut McLachlan won re-election to the State Senate in 2012 receiving 51.7% of the vote winning the election by 1,200 votes.  He ran for re-election in 2014 where he was not opposed by a Democrat.  He received 86% of the vote in 2014.  He is challenged by Democrat Kenneth Gucker for November 8th.  If the turnout ends up being closer to 2012 than 2014 plus a general lean for the electorate to being more Democratic, this could be an upset for McLachlan.  Even though, I was initially interested in the election based on faulty information, I think that it will still be an interesting election to watch.
  4. Connecticut State House of Representatives District 38: Democratic incumbent Elizabeth Ritter won re-election to the State House of Representatives in this district with 61% of the vote by over 2,400 votes.  In 2014, Ritter did not run for re-election.  The Democratic nominee was Marc Balestracci.  Balestracci received 48.2% of the vote and 4,199 votes.  221 votes were given to Green Party candidate Billy Gene Collins.  The Republican nominee Kathleen M. McCarty received 4,289 votes.  If there were not a green party challenger or Balestracci was able to win over just half of the Green Party’s candidate’s votes, he would have won the election. Undeterred from being a spoiler, the Green Party nominated Lauren Shaw for 2016.  The Democratic Party nominated Sharon Palmer to run against the incumbent Kathleen McCarty.  Without a third party spoiler, I would think that Palmer could win.  Based on Presidential turnout, it seems more likely to me that Palmer will win.
  5. Connecticut State House of Representatives District 41: In 2012, there were 9,339 votes cast in the district. 4,951 votes were cast for the Democratic incumbent Elissa Wright.  4,388 were cast for the Republican candidate Harry Watson.  In 2014, there was 7,201 votes cast in the district.  Democrat Elissa Wright received 3,581 votes.  The Republican candidate Aundre Bumgardner received 39 more votes, getting a total of 3620 votes.  The turnout significantly decreased and Wright barely lost. Bumgardner is running for re-election against a new challenger Joe de la Cruz.  De la Cruz should be able to win since 2014 was so close but maybe the incumbent advantage will be too much to overcome.