Gov. Ned Lamont accepts the nomination Credit: Thomas Breen photo / New Haven Independent

Gov. Ned Lamont and Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz have secured a second spot on the November election ballot on the Working Families Party line. The party, which is known for its cross-endorsements, again endorsed the Democratic Party’s ticket for governor and lieutenant governor.

With its endorsement, the Working Families Party recognized the past achievements of the two including passing paid family and medical leave, expanding HUSKY insurance, and raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, as well as continued commitments to raise the standards for working people in Connecticut in their next term.

“During their first term, Governor Lamont and Lieutenant Governor Bysiewicz led the state with the steady hand and sound judgment necessary not just to respond to the worst economic crisis in a generation, but to move Connecticut forward,” Sarah Ganong, state director of the Connecticut Working Families Party, said. “They understand that the foundation of a strong economy is working families, and the need to build an economy where everyone, no matter where they live or where they were born, can thrive.”

Lamont was happy to accept the endorsement. 

“From pandemic response to climate change, we have worked together to ensure Connecticut is prepared to meet the moment and emerge a national leader in confronting shared challenges,” he said. 

Republican Party nominee Bob Stefanowski plans to seek the Independent Party’s endorsement as he did in 2018, but he again will face some competition.

The Independent Party endorsed Stefanowski in 2018 when the Madison businessman lost to Lamont by around 44,000 votes. That year, about 25,000 voters cast ballots for Stefanowski on the Independent line. Lamont also received a cross-endorsement and around 18,000 votes from the Working Families Party in 2018.

But since then, things have changed for the Independent Party. It had been divided into two feuding factions. After the election, the state Supreme Court awarded control of the party to Michael Telesca’s faction, based in Waterbury. And Telesca has said his party was now inclined to nominate Rob Hotaling, a banking executive from Cheshire, to run for governor.

The Independent Party will meet on Aug. 23 in Guilford to decide who it will endorse and put on the ballot in November. Stefanowski has been courting the party’s vote since earlier this year.

Hotaling said he’s going to be putting up a fight. 

“Basically, I’m going against a rich guy who won’t take ‘no’ for an answer,” Hotaling said. “The party wants to run its own nominee this time around. That’s a legitimate request. To have to deal with a guy throwing his money around as if he’s entitled to it … something needs to be done about it. It’s eliminating voter choice.”

In the past, about 100 to 150 party members have endorsed a candidate.