Middletown Mayor officially in race for Governor, favors higher taxes on wealthy

MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (WTNH) — The race to replace Governor Malloy has one more “official” entry tonight; Middletown Mayor Dan Drew is now in the for the long haul.

There are no less than fifteen “official” and possible candidates for the state’s top political job with the election sixteen months away.

Three months before Governor Malloy announced he would not seek another term back in April, Dan Drew started exploring a run getting out in front of  all the other Democrats.

Now in his third term as Mayor, he calls himself the progressive in this race.

I think it means you focus on the middle class, that you understand that the people in the middle class are people who work for a living everyday are the people that our policy needs to be geared toward.”

Besides Drew on the Democratic side; there’s former Consumer Protection Commissisoner Jonathan Harris, former prosecutor Chris Mattei, State Comptroller Kevin Lembo and Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim. Speculation continues to swirl around Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman.  The State Democratic Party Chairman considers Wyman to be the most popular and best known of all the candidates. She continues to decline to answer when asked if she’s running.

Related Content: Democratic Chairman: Wyman the one to watch

The Republican side is even more crowded; Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti, Glastonbury physician and State Rep. Prasad Srinivasan, West Hartford Businessman Joe Visconti, Micah Welintukonis of
Coventry and Trumbull First Selectman Tim Herbst are all declared candidates. Four others are exploring a run.

In the current state budget crisis, Drew says he disagrees with Governor Malloy about not raising taxes and he also disagrees with Democrats in the legislature that want to raise the Sales Tax. “I’m philosophically to Sales Tax increases,” says Drew,  “I believe in a more ‘progressive’ income tax and I think we should be asking the wealthy to pay their fair share.”

Drew also says he doesn’t know if all Democrats running next year will get blamed for state’s severe budget problems but says he’s never been part of it adding,  “I’m not part of the Hartford establishment. I’m not part of the state government. I’ve never worked in state government. I’ve never run for state office. I’ve never held state office.”

You may recall that earlier this year there was a great deal of speculation about Branford State Senator Ted Kennedy Junior as a possible candidate for Governor but several weeks ago Kennedy issued a statement saying he would not be a candidate for statewide office next year.

Related Content: Ted Kennedy Jr. announces he will not run for Governor

CLARIFICATION; Former Republican U.S. Comptroller General David Walker of Bridgeport also officially announced for Governor this week

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