governors

Few places have embraced President Obama — and his policies — with as much gusto as Connecticut.

The state recently became the first to raise the minimum wage to Obama's preferred rate of $10.10 an hour. The state also toughened already strict gun laws following the Newtown school shooting, something the president was unable to persuade Congress to do.

Connecticut's health insurance exchange has been running so smoothly that Maryland decided last month to dump its troubled system and borrow Connecticut's software.

Former Connecticut governor John Rowland has pleaded not guilty to federal charges. For the second time in a decade Rowland is facing political corruption charges. Just a week ago Rowland resigned from his radio talk show and late yesterday was indicted on seven counts by a federal grand jury in New Haven.

Patrick Skahill / WNPR

Former Governor John G. Rowland has pleaded not guilty to charges that he broke election laws to pursue roles with two congressional campaigns. A federal judge in New Haven heard the plea Friday and said jury selection is scheduled to begin on June 10.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Former Republican Governor John Rowland, who has already served federal prison time on corruption-related charges, has been indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of illegal campaign activity

It's a controversy that has been brewing for a couple of years. It picked up steam last week with the guilty pleas of a one-time Republican congressional candidate and her husband.

Dan Malloy Twitter account

It feels a lot like 2004. Both UConn basketball teams are national champions, John Rowland is under investigation, and a Kennedy is in the news! Coming up on our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse, our panel of reporters and analysts weighs in on the state's relationship with it's flagship university. Governor Dannel Malloy (er - Dan Malloy) is trying to cash in on UConn's success as he runs for re-election.

We also say goodbye to a radio competitor who signed off last week. But we have a feeling that former Governor John Rowland will stay in the news.

Also, several Connecticut restaurants are in trouble for playing music and not paying royalties.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Trolls waste no time.

On WTIC's afternoon drive show, Pastor Will Marotti shied away from the scandal facing his predecessor, former Governor John Rowland.

Marotti started off the show by talking about UConn basketball and the low attendance at a Hartford Wolf Pack game. Marotti asked his listeners to call in and talk hockey. The first caller didn't get very far.

WTIC

Former Connecticut Governor John G. Rowland announced Thursday that he's stepping down from his afternoon talk show on WTIC 1080. He ended his show by saying, “Today will be my last show, as I’m leaving the station to take care of some personal issues.”

Chion Wolf / WNPR

On Tuesday, former Governor John G. Rowland took to the airwaves at his usual time on his WTIC AM talk show, despite being named in federal court as an alleged co-conspirator to a campaign finance scheme. He wouldn't comment on the accusations, only to say, "I am not going to be discussing the recent news and legal developments. I am sure that you all understand. And I want to respect the process."

Former congressional candidate Lisa Wilson-Foley and her husband Brian Foley have pleaded guilty to using a fake consulting contract with former Governor John Rowland. Both Foleys appeared in U.S. District Court on Monday. They admitted to conspiring with Rowland and others to violate campaign finance law by concealing $35,000 Brian Foley paid Rowland in 2011 and 2012. The payment went through a business and law office associated with Foley's nursing home chain.

WTIC

Former Republican Gov. John Rowland took to the airwaves on Tuesday to host his afternoon talk show on WTIC 1080. He began by saying he would not discuss the federal case that has apparently ensnared him. 

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy has announced he intends to seek reelection in 2014. 

photonewman/iStock / Thinkstock

A legislative hearing was held Monday on a bill that would allow doctors to prescribe life-ending drugs to the terminally ill.  The session brought emotional testimony from those both in favor and opposed. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

It's been a busy week in the news. In 2014 campaign news, the number of Republican candidates for governor went from six to five and then right back up to six. At the state capitol, lawmakers held two public hearings at the same time, both of which ironically had to do with Freedom of Information legislation.

Metro-North President Joseph Giulietti sent his 100-day plan to state Transportation Commissioner James Redeker on Monday. Giulietti is promising to rebuild a culture of safety at Metro-North to serve as the railroad’s "unshakeable foundation." He agreed to a 100-day plan to improve the railroad’s safety and operational performance in meeting with Governor Dannel Malloy last month.

C-SPAN

For months, reporters have been asking Governor Dannel Malloy if he is running for re-election this year. On Sunday, he shared his future plans: He is not running for president in 2016.

Oh.

On our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse, we'll talk about Malloy's trip to Washington, D.C. for the National Governors Association meetings where he got into a well-publicized spat with Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal.

Closer to home, another investigation is taking place at the state capitol involving the use of a printer in Florida for campaign materials.

C-SPAN

Governor Dannel Malloy locked horns with Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal at a press conference after the National Governor's Association meeting.

he press conference was supposed to outline the bipartisan progress made during the conference, held in Washington, D.C. But in his remarks, Jindal criticized President Barack Obama's plans to raise the minimum wage. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Once again, Connecticut’s felonious former governor is making headlines. This time, John Rowland is hiring a criminal defense attorney as officials investigate his role in the 2012 congressional campaign of Lisa Wilson-Foley.

Our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse discusses this and all the week’s news from our downtown Hartford location.

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick is preparing to deliver a belated State of the Commonwealth address.

Patrick initially planned to give the speech last week, but had to postpone it under the threat of a winter storm.

Patrick plans to give the speech Tuesday at 7:30 p.m.

It will become something of a political warm-up. President Barack Obama is scheduled to deliver his State of the Union address at 9 p.m. Tuesday.

The decision to delay the speech robbed it of some of its suspense.

The U.S. Supreme Court has decided against review a lower court decision that involves former Governor John Rowland and state unions. "In a statement, Rowland and his former budget director Marc Ryan said this: It is unfortunate that the Supreme Court is not taking this case. It will have a profound impact on Governors, Mayors, Boards of Education and taxpayers all across America." The Connecticut Mirror has more.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is going to examine how the state of New Jersey spent $25 million of the federal aid it received after 2012's Hurricane Sandy, Rep. Frank Pallone, D-N.J., has announced.

In the end, Mark Darr had to give in.

Darr, the Republican lieutenant governor of Arkansas, announced Friday that he will resign Feb 1. Earlier this month, he agreed to pay the state ethics commission $11,000 in fines for making personal use of campaign funds and receiving improper expense reimbursements from the state.

Darr called his errors "careless and lazy," but said they were not intentional violations of the law. In a series of interviews with Arkansas news outlets Tuesday, Darr said he would refuse to resign.

A New Jersey State Assembly committee released a trove of documents Friday that shed more light on the bridge lane-closure scandal that is embroiling Republican Gov. Chris Christie's administration. The panel is seeking details on what's seen as an act of political retribution, which targeted the Democratic mayor of Fort Lee, N.J. It obtained the documents under a subpoena.

What New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said Thursday may have mattered less than how long he took to say it.

With his presidential ambitions and, potentially, his governorship put at risk by a scandal over lane closures on the George Washington Bridge, the Republican Christie fielded dozens of questions from reporters during a midday news conference that lasted nearly two hours.

Update at 8:15 p.m. ET: Gov. Christie Responds

In the late afternoon, Gov. Chris Christie released a statement expressing anger at the situation and denying involvement in what appeared to be an act of political payback:

Pete Souza / White House

Governor Dannel Malloy was quick to say that he didn't, and doesn't, want to make what happened in Newtown about him.

Still, on that day, Malloy was at the center of the story.  

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Governor Dannel Malloy was in Washington, D.C. on Monday to talk about Connecticut’s education reform initiatives. He spoke at a forum hosted by the conservative free-market think tank, the American Enterprise Institute. 

It's good to be Chris Christie these days.

Just a few weeks after his landslide re-election victory, the New Jersey governor won a second election this week: chairman of the Republican Governors Association.

The RGA chair is a largely ceremonial role, but in it, Christie will travel the country campaigning for other Republicans in gubernatorial races in 2014, a job that many see as groundwork for a potential White House run.

Jeff Cohen/WNPR

It's been nearly eleven months since the school shooting in Newtown that left 20 children and six educators dead. And prosecutors have yet to release their report into the crime.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie won re-election to a second term.

The Associated Press projected Christie, a Republican, the winner over Democrat Barbara Buono shortly after the polls closed in New Jersey at 8 pm ET.

While a big win by Christie was expected for months with polls showing him with a commanding lead, the victory nevertheless provides a springboard for a potential 2016 presidential run.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The state may shoulder more federal responsibilities as the government shutdown continues. Connecticut has already begun to foot the bill for almost $1 million worth of programs, including keeping open Head Start places in the state. 

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