After spending months engulfed in scandal after scandal, embattled Democrat Middletown Mayor Dan Drew’s candidacy for governor of Connecticut is on the ropes. The CT Mirror describes his campaign as “teetering” and strapped for cash, spending money as quickly it brings it in, leaving him with dwindling resources to keep his desperate candidacy going.
Drew has faced intense criticism for his attempt to shake down Middletown city employees for campaign cash, including police officers and firefighters, as well as accusations of blocking a pay raise for a city employee. The scandals led to the Hartford Courant publishing an editorial calling on him to drop out of the race. To make matters worse, Drew was dealt another blow earlier this week when he lost his seat on the Democratic Town Committee of Middletown by a decisive margin.
With Drew’s scandal-plagued campaign on the brink of failing amid multiple controversies and anemic fundraising, Connecticut Democrats may find themselves with even less options to succeed Failed Governor Dan Malloy with top-tier recruits like Ted Kennedy Jr., Kevin Lembo, George Jespsen, Nancy Wyman, and Malloy himself all refusing to run after seven years of disastrous Democrat mismanagement in Connecticut.
The CT Mirror reports:
“The gubernatorial campaign of Middletown Mayor Dan Drew is teetering with more debt than cash and the prospect of new competition for the Democratic nomination from two fundraising juggernauts, Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin and Susan Bysiewicz, and a third candidate with the resources to self-fund a campaign, Ned Lamont.
In a report filed late Wednesday night, Drew reported raising $37,581 in the final three months of the year, ending with $7,877 cash on hand and unpaid bills of $16,079. His running mate, state Rep. Liz Linehan, added little to the ticket’s cash flow, raising $9,661 with $3,237 in available funds and unpaid bills of $6,300.
‘We’ll see how things go,’ Drew said Thursday, when asked if he could continue his campaign. ‘Sometimes your money is tight, and other times it’s flush.’
Drew opened an exploratory campaign for governor in January, three months before Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced he would not seek a third term. In July, Drew became the first Democrat to declare his candidacy.
But he has struggled, spending money as quickly as he raised it.
In October, the Hartford Courant called in an editorial for Drew to quit the race over a fundraising letter sent to city employees, including police officers whose home addresses were not public information. The editorial called it ‘a shakedown.’ The State Elections Enforcement Commission is investigating the solicitation.
On Tuesday, he suffered the indignity of losing his seat on his city’s Democratic Town Committee. His slate lost decisively at a caucus that Rob Blanchard, a city council member on the winning slate, called a reflection of his deeper political vulnerabilities and dissatisfaction with his mayoral style.
In September, Drew took the unusually early step of naming Lineman, a first-year state representative, as his choice for a running mate in 2018. As the filings Wednesday showed, she brought no new fundraising strength to the partnership.
Drew’s exploratory committee raised and spent $177,000, none of which he was going to apply toward the $250,000 threshold needed to qualify for public financing. As a declared candidate, Drew raised $91,111.”