Welcome to the CTNewsJunkie’s March Madness Election 2018 Second Round Democratic “Primary” contest!

Former Commissioner of Veterans Affairs Sean Connolly and Greenwich businessman Ned Lamont emerged as the top two vote getters in a contest that saw light participation overall.

Our second round of voting closes SUNDAY, March 25, at NOON.

Vote below! You will need to switch OFF any ad blockers you have running to ensure that the poll shows up. If you’ve switched off your ad blocker but still don’t see the poll, you probably aren’t in the right state to be eligible to vote! (Results will be displayed regardless of location after voting closes).

Round 2 Results

Susan’s Pre-Tournament Analysis

Here we go, seven Democrats vying for a prize nobody’s really sure if they actually want! Let’s take a look at each one of these candidates and try to figure out who will be heading to the second round.

Luke Bronin, the mayor of Hartford and a former high-ranking official in the Malloy administration, turned some heads when he announced he was exploring a run for governor, but not necessarily in a good way! Bronin is a seasoned political operator with a strong command of the issues, but his former boss Dan Malloy continues to be the albatross around his neck. Just ask Andrew McDonald how that’s going!

Susan Bysiewicz, the former Secretary of the State, is back in the fray after a very long absence, having washed out of the 2010 race for attorney general after it was discovered that she hadn’t done enough time as an actual lawyer to qualify. Oops! But what Bysiewicz brings to the table is name recognition and experience — she is the only candidate who has won a statewide general election. She also has a reputation for being a vicious campaigner: other Democrats be warned.

Sean Connolly, the former Commissioner of Veterans Affairs, isn’t well-known to voters statewide. But he has two things going for him: a compelling personal narrative and passionate fans. If there’s anyone who could be a dark horse in this tourney, it’s Connolly.

Joe Ganim, the mayor of Bridgeport, would prefer we didn’t talk about his felonious past. So let’s talk about it! Here’s a guy who was put away for corruption during his last stint as mayor of Bridgeport, who after his release came back to win that very same post (somehow), trying now to be governor. Ganim could benefit from a too-large field and our upside-down political culture, but do we really want another John Rowland?

Jonathan Harris, former West Hartford mayor, state senator, and Department of Consumer Protection commissioner, has plenty of experience and a decent amount of money in the bank. But he’s really struggled to get any kind of traction, and that will likely continue here. A place in the top two would be a big surprise.

Ned Lamont, a businessman famous for taking down Joe Lieberman in the 2006 Democratic U.S. Senate primary, is trying to recapture that old magic. He stumbled in 2010, narrowly losing the gubernatorial primary to Dan Malloy, but Lamont still has plenty of fans and high name recognition. Expect him to do well.

Guy Smith, a former executive at Diageo in Norwalk who was also an advisor to both Bill and Hillary Clinton, is almost entirely unknown. While that means he could end up surprising us, he’s going to have a very difficult uphill climb.

Susan’s Picks: Sean Connolly, Ned Lamont

Round 1 Results

Susan Bigelow is an award-winning columnist and the founder of CTLocalPolitics. She lives in Enfield with her wife and their cats.

DISCLAIMER: The views, opinions, positions, or strategies expressed by the author are theirs alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions, or positions of CTNewsJunkie.com.