HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — As News 8 reported Wednesday, the new State Senate will be evenly split with 18 Republicans and 18 Democrats.
Because Democratic Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman will break any tie votes, the Democrats still will hold the slimmest majority. It means New Haven State Senator Martin Looney will remain Senate President pro-tem and Republican Senator Len Fasano of North Haven will remain Minority Leader.
In the House, where Democrats lost eight seats to the Republicans there will be a much narrower 79 to 72 majority. Current Majority Leader Joe Aresimowicz of Berlin was expected to be elected Speaker of the House Thursday and pledged to work with the new, bigger Republican Caucus.
“I’ve always included the other side of the isle in my discussions when passing bills, I work with everybody,” Aresimowicz said.
Current House Minority Leader Themis Klarides of Derby was expected to be re-elected to that position and says she has had a cordial relationship with Aresimowicz.
“But when push comes to shove, the things that affect the state the most; the budget, the taxes, the borrowing, the spending, the anti-business bills, we do not agree on those matters,” said Klarides.
Now, with 72 Republican votes on any bill, all Klarides has to do is get 4 Democrats to join her. On some issues, that could be very achievable. Klarides will have the added support of her younger sister; Nicole Klarides-Ditria who defeated an incumbent Democrat in her Naugatuck Valley state rep race.
“I’m excited to have us work together. I think we need more like minded people up in Hartford,” said Klarides-Ditria.
“I was the first woman leader in House Republican history two years ago and now we have the first sister act to add to this great caucus of ours,” added Klarides.
There have been brothers in the Connecticut House of Representatives, but never sisters. Another historic first.