November 7, 2004: Headlines: COS - Dominican Republic: Politics: Election2006 - Dodd: Register Citizen: Dodd said to be weighing a run for governor

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Dominican Republic: RPCV Chris Dodd (Dominican Republic) : RPCV Chris Dodd: Archived Stories: November 7, 2004: Headlines: COS - Dominican Republic: Politics: Election2006 - Dodd: Register Citizen: Dodd said to be weighing a run for governor

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Dodd said to be weighing a run for governor

Dodd said to be weighing a run for governor

Dodd said to be weighing a run for governor

Dodd said to be weighing a run for governor



Journal Register News Service

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NEW HAVEN -- The Democratic wheel of fortune just took another interesting spin with reports that freshly re-elected Sen. Christopher J. Dodd is seriously considering a run for governor in 2006.

Dodd was mentioned in a New York Times story Saturday as one of three senators weighing campaigns for governor in their respective states in light of the serious Democratic losses in last weekís presidential and congressional races.

The other two senators are Charles E. Schumer of New York and Jon Corzine of New Jersey.

Doddís office issued a statement that he has no plans to run for governor, but Democratic political leaders said Saturday the stateís senior senator is weighing just such a possibility.

Voters Tuesday re-elected Dodd to another six years in a 66 to 32 percent tally, a record fifth term for the senator, who also served six years as the congressman from Eastern Connecticut.

One party leader Saturday said Dodd has repeatedly said he would consider trading Washington, D.C., for Hartford if the Democrats failed to win a majority in the Senate, or if he did not become minority leader of that body.

"Obviously, those conditions have been met," the leader said.

George Jepsen, head of the state Democratic Party, said there was a chance Dodd would run.

"Chris Dodd would be an excellent candidate and a superb governor," Jepsen said.

Not only do the Democrats continue to be the minority party in Congress, but they lost seats in last weekís election, with the GOP now entrenched with 55 senators and 231 congressmen.

Dodd, 60, also opted not to buck Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nevada, who had already lined up the necessary votes for minority leader after South Dakota voters failed to send Tom Daschle back to the Senate seat he held for 24 years.

One strategist said Dodd has been upset with the partisan tone in the Senate and the continuing difficulty of getting anything accomplished in Washington.

"He has been very explicit that since 1994, Washington has become a much more nastily partisan place. Itís just not fun and when you are in the minority, youíre on the receiving end of most of the body blows," said the adviser.

Given Doddís status in the party, he can probably wait as late as next September before declaring his intentions, if he decides to enter the fray, the official said.

Already in the gubernatorial race is New Haven Mayor John DeStefano Jr. and Stamford Mayor Dannel P. Malloy, both of whom have raised $1 million each for their campaigns, and Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz, who is expected to hit that mark by the end of the year.

Lt. Gov. Kevin Sullivan, formerly Democratic leader of the state Senate, said if Dodd made the decision to run "it would clear the field and he would be the choice."

He said state Attorney General Richard Blumenthal has "similar recognition and similar positives, but Dodd would be a compelling candidate for Democrats."

Sullivan said however, he would be somewhat surprised if Dodd opted to come back to the state given that he is "one of the few Democrats down there who has an ability to accomplish things, even in a Republican Congress."

Also, Doddís wife, Jackie Clegg, who is expecting their second child in March, has a professional life that focuses on Washington, D.C. Others thought she would prevail, if she felt strongly about staying in the nationís capital.

"A lot of choices for him," Sullivan said. If he got into the run, however, "I canít think of anyone who would credibly be able to defeat him in a race for governor."

The domino effect would then begin to spin down through the party, with Dodd "almost certainly," in Sullivanís view, picking U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-3, as his successor in the Senate, if he won the governorís seat in November 2006.

DeLauro could then serve until 2008, before standing for election to the Senate until the end of Doddís term in 2010.

DeLauro worked in Doddís office when he first came to Washington, before she was elected to Congress in 1990.

"They are very close. I believe that she would be his preferred choice," Sullivan said, although he said Blumenthal would probably be interested in the Senate seat.

DeLauro Saturday said she has not talked to Dodd about any interest he might have in leading the state as governor.

"If he were to decide, I would be very supportive of his efforts. He would be outstanding as governor," DeLauro said.

As for her replacing him in the Senate, "Thatís speculation and Iím not going to speculate. Again, if the senator wants to run and be governor, Iím going to be there for whatever he wants."

Blumenthal, who has been discussed as a Democratic gubernatorial candidate in the past three races, Saturday said he anticipated making a decision "relatively soon," as to whether he will run in 2006.

Pushed if that announcement would come by the end of the year, Blumenthal said he wouldnít talk about a "definitive timetable at this point, especially with this possibility of a Dodd candidacy."

Blumenthal said Dodd "would certainly be the strongest of any potential candidate and I would welcome his interest."

On the other hand, DeStefano said he would continue to run, no matter who got into the fray.

"The race is two years away. I donít know who else is going to run, but Iíve raised nearly as much as Bill Curry raised in the last election. Iím working on this. Itís a serious candidacy and itís going well," DeStefano said.

Curry was trounced by former Gov. John G. Rowland in 2002. Rowland resigned in July as an impeachment inquiry was unfolding.

If Dodd won the governorís seat and DeLauro went to the Senate, there would be a number of candidates that may run for her seat, including DeStefano, state Rep. Michael Lawlor of East Haven, state Sen. Toni Harp of New Haven and possibly J. Edward Meyer, who was just elected state senator from the 12th District.

DeStefano Saturday refused to speculate on that option.

"Iím not running for the 3rd District. Iím running for governor," he said.

©The Register Citizen 2004

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Story Source: Register Citizen

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Dominican Republic; Politics; Election2006 - Dodd



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