Christine Stuart file photo
State Sen. Sam Caligiuri (Christine Stuart file photo)

The gloves in the U.S. Senate race have come off and state Sen. Sam Caligiuri, R-Waterbury, has come out swinging at the Republican frontrunner, former U.S. Rep. Rob Simmons.

At the end of last week Simmons posted a blog on his campaign Web site explaining how he had changed his position on two pieces of legislation: Cap and Trade and the Employee Free Choice Act.

Simmons had supported the legislation, while in Congress, but on the campaign trail the moderate has moved closer to the right and has decided he’s against these two issues.

“While Rob Simmons can spin this all he wants, he is in a primary battle and is desperate to get the support of real, principled Republicans,” Caligiuri’s spokeswoman, Tiffany Romero Grossman, said in a press release Monday.

“So Rob Simmons, just like Chris Dodd, is more than happy to say whatever it takes to win an election regardless of what the facts are or what their records show. This type of pandering politics is exactly what is wrong in Washington today,” she added.

In his blog post Friday Simmons said he changed his mind about the issue after he saw how the bills would affect businesses. As the state’s business advocate, “I became convinced they would cause more harm than good and I would oppose them in the Senate,” Simmons wrote.

Grossman characterized Simmons’ change of heart on the two issues as business as usual.

“We cannot afford another Chris Dodd. After 6 years in Congress, Simmons is clearly a part of the problem not the solution. His latest epiphany on two key issues that clearly he hopes will fool real, principled Republicans is right out of the D.C. insider playbook,” Grossman wrote.

Simmons’ spokesman Jim Barnett said the blog post “speaks for itself.”