Bucking the Democratic Establishment, Liberal Lawmakers Shun Clinton and Back Sanders

By Daniella Altimari Via the Hartford Courant

Hillary Clinton has won the support of much of Connecticut’s Democratic establishment, including Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy.

But several prominent progressives in the state legislature are backing Clinton’s chief Democratic rival, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. The endorsements were announced Wednesday by the Connecticut Working Families party.

“I am supporting Bernie Sanders because at heart of his campaign is his commitment to the fundamental idea that your life shouldn’t be determined the minute you are born: whether you are born rich, poor, black, white, or brown, everyone should have the same opportunities,” said state Sen. Gary Winfield of New Haven. “Sen. Sanders and I both believe that we need to work to reform systems that do not work for people and that requires work. Sen. Sanders has been at work for a long time and today I am proud to lend my endorsement to his candidacy for president of the United States.”

Winfield was joined by several other prominent liberals in the General Assembly including Reps. Peter Tercyak of New Britain, Robyn Porter of New Haven and Ed Vargas of Hartford.

“No other candidate for President has stood as solidly with working men and women as Bernie Sanders,” Porter said.

Vargas said Sanders will work for a fairer economic system that will benefit all, “not just the wealthy and well-connected.”

Nationally, the Working Families Party has endorsed Sanders.

Several municipal leaders affiliated with the party, including Hartford City Council member Wildaliz Bermudez and Bridgeport Board of Education member Sauda Baraka, have also endorsed Sanders.

Meanwhile, on Wednesday night, Malloy was on The CBS Evening News criticizing Sanders and questioning his electability. “I think the term ‘socialist’ doesn’t make it easier to win,” Malloy said.