Another New England primary is happening Tuesday, this one outside New Hampshire and between Democrats—and it’s a do-over to one that was stained by voter fraud caught on video.
Bridgeport, the largest city in Connecticut, garnered national attention last year after a judge tossed the results of a September mayoral primary because a Democrat operative was caught on video apparently dumping a load of ballots into a drop box.
“I have no confidence the do-over election in Bridgeport will be more legitimate than last time. The same people are ultimately in charge,” Connecticut state Sen. Robert C. Sampson, a Republican, told The Daily Signal.
There is no interest from the Democrat majority in the Legislature to prevent election fraud, Sampson, the ranking senator on the Legislature’s joint Government Administration and Elections Committee, said.
“Democrats resist any election integrity efforts,” Sampson said last week in an interview. “They voted down amendments to adopt voter ID, for signature verification, and they want to expand mail-in voting and no-excuse absentee voting.”
He said Republican state legislators warned about vulnerabilities to election fraud.
“Bridgeport brought attention to what we talked about,” Sampson said. “We hoped it would stop Democrats from just mocking us when we brought up election security. It didn’t.”
The primary in Bridgeport on Tuesday—the same day as the presidential primary in neighboring New Hampshire—will result in a new general election. In the heavily one-party Connecticut city, the Democratic Party is the de facto decider of who wins the election.
As noted in my book “The Myth of Voter Suppression,” mail-in and absentee voting are the largest sources of election fraud in the United States.
The voter fraud in Bridgeport is isolated only in the fact that it was captured on video, said state Rep. Gale Mastrofrancesco, a Republican who is the ranking House member on the Government Administration and Elections Committee.
“If you talk to the Democratic majority, they would say Bridgeport is isolated, but there is plenty of evidence fraud is happening across the state—in Stamford, in New Haven, and elsewhere,” Mastrofrancesco told The Daily Signal. “The difference here is that this was caught on camera.”
About a week before the 2023 general election in Bridgeport’s mayoral race, Connecticut Superior Court Judge William Clark voided the results of the Democrats’ September primary, which pitted incumbent Mayor Joe Ganim against challenger John Gomes. There was no legal remedy to postpone the general election, which resulted in a November victory for Ganim.
Gomes, the city’s former chief administrative officer, was ahead on election night in the original primary, but after absentee ballots came in the next day, Ganim was declared the winner with a 251-vote lead out of 8,173 ballots cast.
Video appears to show the vice chairman of the Bridgeport Democratic Committee, a Ganim supporter, apparently stuffing ballots into a drop box outside Bridgeport City Hall.
In his opinion, Clark wrote: “The videos are shocking to the court and should be shocking to all the parties.”
After the fraud scandal, the Connecticut Legislature approved $150,000 to provide a special election monitor for Bridgeport to oversee the 2023 municipal general elections and 2024 state elections.
This was just “smoke and mirrors,” Mastrofrancesco said, noting that Republican lawmakers had unsuccessfully offered amendments to “stop using the COVID-19 era drop boxes” in elections.
Ganim is known as one of Connecticut’s biggest comeback stories. The Bridgeport mayor’s political career seemed to have come to an end in 2003 after he was convicted of racketeering, extortion, and other public corruption charges and sentenced to nine years in prison.
But Ganim was elected again as mayor in 2015, and has been reelected in each subsequent election.
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