Political news from WNPR


Candidate Mary-Jane Foster is hoping to qualify for the Bridgeport mayoral primary on September 16. She thinks she's got a pretty good chance.

Foster is in a tight race with both incumbent Bill Finch and challenger Joe Ganim, the popular former mayor who spent seven years in prison for crimes he committed while in office.

Governor Gina Raimondo has asked the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program to develop a new economic strategy for Rhode Island.

The Institution is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank known for its foreign policy and economic analysis. It's the latest group of outside scholars and consultants to be brought in to assist Raimondo's administration in developing new strategies and plans.

Devon Puglia

Governor Dannel Malloy signed a bill Monday that clarifies state laws on police officers' authority to make arrests outside of their own towns. 

Where Presidential Candidates Stand On Climate Change

Aug 11, 2015

Last week, President Obama released a plan to cut carbon emissions from power plants. Climate change has also been cropping up on the presidential campaign trail — both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have released their own proposals.

A year after Michael Brown, an unarmed black 18-year-old, was fatally shot by a white police officer in Ferguson, Mo., sparking weeks of often violent protests in the city, the country is still struggling to deal with the issues the shooting, and others like it, have brought to the fore.

Debora Timms

Members of Connecticut’s Puerto Rican community met in Hartford on Friday with U.S. Senators Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal to discuss Puerto Rico’s debt crisis.

Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, who is in line to be Democratic leader when Sen. Harry Reid of Nevada steps down next year, says he will vote against the president's nuclear control deal with Iran.

In a post on Medium, Schumer says after "considerable soul-searching," he has decided he can't support the agreement.

Schumer says among his reservations about the deal is that it does not allow for inspections of Iranian nuclear facilities at any time. He adds:

Updated at 11:36 p.m.

All eyes were on billionaire businessman Donald Trump on Thursday night — and he didn't disappoint.

On the very first question, Trump refused to promise to back the eventual GOP nominee — unless it's him — and wouldn't rule out launching a third-party bid. He jabbed at moderator Megyn Kelly when asked about his comments on women, called reporters "a very dishonest lot," declared that "our leaders are stupid, our politicians are stupid," and was unapologetic about his wealth and businesses.

Updated at 7:40 p.m.

The biggest punches thrown at the first GOP presidential debate of the evening were at candidates not on the consolation debate stage.

Mike Priggins and Kyle Reyes / under30ceo.com

A federal grand jury has brought more charges against Earl O'Garro, the insurance agent who prosecutors say made off with more than $1 million from the state and the city of Hartford.

Donald Trump and rivals Jeb Bush and Scott Walker will face off in a televised debate tonight, taking the stage in Cleveland along with seven other Republican hopefuls who were selected by debate organizer Fox News.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

As President Barack Obama made his case for the Iran nuclear agreement at American University on Wednesday, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy took to the floor of his chamber to come out in favor of the controversial deal. 

MGM Springfield

Casino developer MGM Resorts International has filed a lawsuit against three top Connecticut officials, including Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Pushing the line of ethics is nothing new in politics. That is part of the reason voters are frustrated when it continues to happen. Former Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim is hoping to return to his former office after a stint in prison on corruption charges. The former house Republicans chief of staff faces up to 15 months in prison for collecting kickbacks. And the Connecticut Democratic Party is trying to avoid complying with a subpoena issued by state election officials.

This post was updated at 7:15 p.m.

The final polls are in and the stage is set for Thursday night's first Republican presidential debate.

Those who made the cut, according to Fox News: businessman Donald Trump, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, neurosurgeon Ben Carson, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Ohio Gov. John Kasich.

JGlazer75 / Creative Commons

The state comptroller says Connecticut is on track to close out the last fiscal year with a $70.9 million budget deficit.

The room at Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester had 400 seats set out for Bernie Sanders’ town hall meeting on Saturday; all of them were full and people were standing in the aisles. They’ve come for the message Sanders has been delivering with the consistency of a jackhammer for his whole political career.

Office of Sen. Chris Murphy / Office of Sen. Richard Blumenthal

Connecticut Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy joined Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty and gun safety advocates in Hartford on Monday to urge firearms dealers to wait until background checks are complete before selling a weapon. 

The inaugural 2016 debate for the White House on Thursday will be the first time many voters will be tuning into the volatile GOP campaign, and candidates are praying they'll get a boost and not a bust from the face-off.

"The level of engagement has been very low," said Rick Wilson, a Florida-based national GOP strategist. "This will be a week where we will probably have record viewership on Fox News for a primary debate, and it's going to get a lot of attention and a lot of focus."

Heather Brandon / WNPR

The city of Hartford will soon have an election monitor.

Secretary of the State Denise Merrill has appointed Litchfield attorney and longtime Connecticut League of Women Voters leader Christine Horrigan to the position, created last month by the General Assembly.

epSos.de / Creative Commons

President Barack Obama scolded Congress last week at his signing of the latest federal stop gap transportation funding bill.

ChamberECT / Flickr Creative Commons

The race for the White House is on and politicians from around the country are lining up for a shot at the presidency. As of this month, there are eight current or former governors seeking their party's nomination. While Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy is not one of them, he's certainly not shy about discussing those who are.

Jeff Cohen / WNPR

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra and his team are using some polarizing rhetoric as they try to hold on to Hartford city hall. Segarra is casting this as a race between "us" and "them," while others are calling it a fight for Latino pride.

This post was updated at 6:45 p.m. ET

Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton released eight years worth of tax returns Friday, showing that she and her husband Bill Clinton earned $139 million since 2007. They paid nearly $44 million in federal taxes during that period. The couple's effective federal tax rate ranged from 25 percent in 2007 to 36 percent last year.

U.S. State Department

Debate continued this week in Washington, D.C. over President Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran.  

Robert Couse-Baker/Creative Commons

The city of Hartford has seen 19 homicides so far this year, the same number as all of 2014. While there’s nothing new about an increase in violence during the summer months, Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra has admitted the police force needs help. He called on the state to provide more manpower and resources. 

Members of the Black Lives Matter movement are making sure the presidential candidates don't take their votes or their concerns for granted. The candidates are being confronted with activists who are responding to a string of deaths of African-Americans at the hands of police.

Democrats have traditionally won strong margins with black voters and that is unlikely to change in 2016. But in recent weeks, the Black Lives Matter movement has been a stumbling block for the Democratic candidates.

Cloe Poisson / Courtesy of The Hartford Courant

After coming up short for the Democratic endorsement, Bridgeport mayoral candidate Joe Ganim is focused on the September primary. 

Cloe Poisson / Courtesy of The Hartford Courant

No one can argue the charisma of former Bridgeport mayor Joe Ganim. He served five terms as a beloved leader in a city long plagued by  crime, poverty, and corruption, much of the corruption under the Ganim administration.

It's an old and controversial question: Should federal Pell grants be used to help prisoners pay for college?

Tomorrow, at a prison in Jessup, Md., Education Secretary Arne Duncan and Attorney General Loretta Lynch are expected to unveil a program to do just that. The new plan would create a limited pilot program allowing some students in prison to use Pell grants to pay for college classes.

The key word there is "limited" — because there's only so much the administration can do. To understand why, we have to go back to November 1993.