Fairfield County: “The ATM of American politics”

STAMFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — President Obama’s visit to the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in New London marked the first of two stops he would make in the state Wednesday. His second was on the opposite side of the state in Stamford for private Democratic fundraiser.

For political scientist Scott McLean, a professor at Quinnipiac University, it’s no surprise Obama decided to make a stop in Fairfield County. McLean refers to it after all as “the ATM of American politics.”

McLean says if you’ve ever wondered why in an overwhelmingly blue state it seems politicians and political hopefuls of all persuasions come to Fairfield County, money is likely the predominant factor.

“We are getting a lot of attention from both political parties and that’s partly because there’s red and there’s blue and there’s green, and we have plenty of green in Connecticut,” said the professor.

Plenty of green may be an understatement. In a list ranking the top 50 zip codes for federal political contributions in 2012, compiled by the non-partisan group OpenSecrets, three Connecticut zip codes are listed, all in Fairfield County.

But before you think it’s all about the money, Professor McLean adds there’s something politically strategic the Gold Cost offers as well.

“We also have people that make a lot of big decisions,” said McLean. “We have people who are in the media, people who are connected politically.”

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