Democrat Will Haskell thanks supporters tonight in Westport after defeating incumbent Republican state Sen. Toni Boucher in Connecticut’s 26th District. WestportNow.com video by Helen Klisser During
Monday, December 11, 2023
By Jarret Liotta
Big voter turnout in Westport—unofficially just under 14,000 votes including absentee ballots, from among 18,629 registered—favored the Democrats today.
GOP candidate for state representative Greg Kraut watches results tabulated by GOP Vice Chair Joseph Sledge, joined by Brandi Briggs, RTM District 7.. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Jarret Liotta for WestportNow.com
Incumbent State Rep. Jonathan Steinberg beat GOP challenger Greg Kraut by an unofficial count of 7,778 to 4,947 or 61 to 39 percent.
Democratic candidate Will Haskell took 7,686 votes in Westport to incumbent State Sen. Toni Boucher’s 4,284 for the 26th District seat, or 64 to 36 percent.
State Sen. Tony Hwang, R-28, was edged out in Westport 892 votes to 680 by Democratic challenger Michelle Lapine McCabe.
Will Haskell greets supporters tonight at the Little Barn in Westport after receiving a call from incumbent Republican Toni Boucher conceding defeat in the 26th state Senate District. Some political pundits pointed out that Boucher has represented the district for most of the 22 years Haskell has been alive. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
By Jacqueline Rabe Thomas and Jake Karawww.ctmirror.org
UPDATE Democrats made their first state legislative gains in 10 years tonight, breaking an 18-18 tie in the Senate by picking up at least three Republican seats and defending vulnerable Democratic lawmakers who were targeted by the GOP. House Democrats appeared to have a net gain of nine seats, with eight unresolved races.
Other Democratic gains in the Senate were possible, with three races too close to call. All three of those seats are held by Republicans, but Democrats were leading with all the votes counted. Recounts are expected.
“Tonight was a big night for Democrats in the state Senate,” said Senate President Pro Tem Martin M. Looney, D-New Haven. “Our candidates presented a vision for our state that represented Connecticut’s best values.”
House Democrats, who began the night an 80-71 advantage, won at least 92, with the GOP capturing 58 and one race under review, Republican Noreen Kokoruda of Madison.
Incumbent Democratic State Rep. Jonathan Steinberg was all smiles tonight after unofficial returns showed he handily defeated Republican challenger Greg Kraut to win his fifth term representing the 136th District, which includes most of Westport. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
Incumbent Democratic State Rep. Jonathan Steinberg tonight easily defeated Republican challenger Greg Kraut in the 136th District, according to unofficial returns.
According to the returns, Steinberg won 61 percent of the vote, his largest victory margin in his four previous races for the seat.
Democrats celebrated the victory at the Little Barn Restaurant on Post Road East.
Kraut, looking very despondent, and a small crowd of Republicans heard the returns at a storefront on Post Road West.
U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, who is seeking a second term in today’s election, stopped by Long Lots Elementary School today for a photo op with fellow Democratic candidates Jonathan Steinberg and Will Haskell. They were joined by Democratic Town Committee Chair Ellen Lautenberg (l) and Westport Selectman Melissa Kane (r). (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Helen Klisser During for WestportNow.com
By Jarret Liotta
UPDATE (adds additional detail, Steinberg comments) Election officials reported a finger-pointing, screaming, shoving match between two candidates outside Greens Farms School today, which they said was written up by a passing police officer. But one candidate said it did not happen that way.
Republican challenger Greg Kraut points his finger at a supporter of Democratic incumbent Jonathan Steinberg (r) at Greens Farms School. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Photo by Darcy Hicks
Democratic State Rep. Jonathan Steinberg, incumbent candidate for the 136th district, and opponent Greg Kraut, Republican, were shouting at one another and even shoving, according to District 136-4 Moderator Arline Gertzoff and Craig Burry, assistant registrar at the site.
“They didn’t have a fist fight, but they were poking at each other and screaming at each other,” Burry said, noting each was guilty of multiple encroachments into the legally limited space for campaigning.
While Kraut could not be reached for comment, Steinberg vehemently denied that he was ever chastised by election officials, let alone that the confrontation amounted to anything more than a 15-second spat with Kraut.
Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe told the Westport Rotary Club today four things keep him up at night: 1) The new estimate it may cost $70 million to build a new Coleytown Middle School; 2) Keeping Westporters safe in this era of shootings and hate crimes; 3) The impact of a new style of multi-family housing on Westport, and 4) How best to promote downtown Westport and Saugatuck. “All these things are different than my list of a year ago,” he told fellow club members. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Dave Matlow for WestportNow.com