“Questions About Consultant Unleash Bitter Acrimony Between Senate Democrats, Republicans.” That was the headline in a Hartford Courant article about Senate Republicans’ use of information collected with taxpayer dollars for campaign purposes.
While the Republicans’ actions raise some serious concerns that certainly warrant further investigation, the real scandal is the inability of lawmakers in Hartford to move beyond the partisan bickering and come together to solve the serious problems of the state.
Next year, legislators in Hartford will have to find a way to close a $1 billion gap in the budget. That’s billion with a “b.” State workers are being laid off, services are being cut, and municipalities are doing everything they can to balance their budgets with less help from the state and without raising local taxes and further burdening taxpayers.
On top of dealing with this most recent budget crisis, the General Assembly will also need to overhaul the way in which the state funds education after the Superior Court found that we are abdicating our constitutional duty to provide decent public education to our students—and do it within 180 days.
Our state is facing serious challenges ahead, and lawmakers in Hartford can’t see beyond the Rs and Ds at the end of their names.
As someone who has worked across the aisle on local issues, I understand that there are good people on both sides who want to do what is best for our state. It’s time we put aside the “bitter acrimony” and remember that the people of the State of Connecticut have entrusted elected officials with the power to tackle the big issues and solve serious problems.
The job of lawmakers in Hartford is not to whine about the other side, or file complaints, or name call. I learned early on in the military that it doesn’t matter if you can identify a problem, it matters whether you are willing to roll up your sleeves and get to work to solve it.
Hartford, the time has come to roll up your sleeves. If I am privileged enough to earn the support of voters come November, I’d be happy to show you how to do it.
Ryan Rogers is the Democratic state senate candidate for District 16.