by John Dankosky - We kick off our 2010 Where We Live election coverage Friday with Democratic Senate candidate Merrick Alpert (for those of you wondering, yes there is a Democrat other than Dick Blumenthal running).
Here’s the basic rules for our candidate forums:
1. We talk to every candidate for every statewide race, and the five congressional races as a solo guest, with questions from me and from listeners.
2. We require the guests to spend an hour on air, in our studios in Hartford. If they want to phone in, or only be here for 20 minutes, they don’t get to play.
3. In an hour, we have enough time for them to lay out some of their platform, but most of the hour is spent answering policy questions. They don’t know what we’re going to ask…or what you’re going to ask…unless they’re planting questions on Twitter.
In 2006, when we started this, these conversations became a pretty important part of a few races, and we hope the same will be true this time. We’re waiting until later in the year to get into the statewide office races like Attorney General, and those for the congressional seats…we’re waaaay too far out on that. But with party conventions looming, we are starting to try and whittle down the field of candidates for Governor and Senator. (I truly couldn’t even tell you how many people are running at this point.)
Anyway, up first is Merrick Alpert, walking crusader. Yes, I said walking. I guess he took my buddy Rick Green of the Courant out on one of his treks recently. I’m giving you this one, Merrick…my first question will be about walking with Rick Green.
Aside from that, I’m not sure what we’ll be talking about. In this letter sent to Chris Dodd (courtesy the New Haven Register) it seems he had nothing bad to say about the man he was trying to beat:
Dear Senator Dodd,
Upon hearing the news this morning, I wish to commend you for acting honorably in deciding not to run for re-election in 2010. For 30 years you have provided exemplary service to the citizens of Connecticut, producing substantial improvements in the lives of families and, in particular, children. You have been a voice of reason in American foreign policy. Most importantly, you have shepherded through the Senate affordable, nearly universal health care for all Americans, perhaps the most important legislative accomplishment in a generation.
I wish you, Jackie and your entire family well in the future. I am
This seeming lack of major policy disagreements with Dodd has been fairly well detailed by the liberal blog MyLeftNutmeg.
One thing we know for sure…dude likes to write a letter. Today in the Courant’s Capitol Watch, Daniela Altimari shared Merrick’s note to new challenger Dick Blumenthal:
“I am delighted that the contest to succeed Chris Dodd has opened up so that Connecticut Democrats can decide who they want to represent them in the U.S. Senate,” Alpert writes.
“As we each campaign over the next seven months to the August primary, we need to keep focused on the important task before us: of making certain that Connecticut elects a Democrat as Senator come November…Our mutual responsibility through the primary season is to make certain the Democratic Party runs the strongest possible candidate to defeat an anti-government, fear-based Republican platform.”
Questions for Merrick Alpert? Leave them here, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call us Friday morning 9-10 ET. Or, be civilized…write a letter.