By SHERIDAN ROY
Local resident and business owner Jack Perry brought excitement to the 2017 town council race with an unsuccessful campaign as an independent candidate. Last week, Perry announced his intentions to run for the Connecticut General Assembly in 2020—this time with the Democratic Party.
In his exploratory committee, Perry will look into either running for the 30th house of representatives district or the 16th senatorial district. Though Perry received calls from friends and family to run for town council again in 2019, he said he decided not to run for council, but to instead explore a run for state government in 2020.
“Connecticut needs new leaders with new energy and new ideas,” said Perry. “I am personally and professionally affected every day like everyone I know by the decisions made in Hartford. One thing is for certain: if I take the plunge and win, I wouldn’t forget where I came from like so many have at the capital.”
Though Perry lost during his 2017 campaign for town council as an unaffiliated candidate, he said he learned from the experience. Thirteen candidates ran for council in 2017. Only nine seats could be filled. Perry earned the 10th most votes out of the 13 candidates, falling 60 votes behind the candidate in ninth place.
“We came very close—too close,” he said in a video announcing his exploratory committee. “We changed the way campaigns are run in our town, and I am proud of the positive, ‘Southington first’ movement we began.”
When asked what he would bring to the table if he chooses to run for a position in state government, Perry said: “my small business experience, my no-nonsense attitude, my passion, work ethic and my eagerness for bipartisanship to find solutions.”
After running unaffiliated in 2017, Perry decided to join the Democratic Party while he explores the possibility of running in 2020.
“When the Democrats won a majority on the Southington Town Council, I saw the difference they’ve made the last two years,” he said. “Their practical and moderate approach is exactly what Southington and our state needs.”
Southington Demo-cratic Town Committee chair Robert Berkmoes welcomed Perry to the party.
“We are so happy to have Jack join us,” Berkmoes said in a press release. “Jack’s love for Southington is apparent in all the hard work he does for our community. I know Jack will make a great addition to our team.”
While Perry is running his exploratory committee, he hopes to hear from residents about their concerns and opinions. He also will determine if he can build a fundraising base that will be viable to qualify for the citizen’s election program.
Currently, the 30th house district is held by Joe Aresimowicz (D). In the 2018 election, Aresimowicz stated publicly that this would be his last term in office. The 16th senatorial district is currently held by Rob Sampson (R), who just entered the position in the 2018 election.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Sheridan Roy, email her at SRoy@SouthingtonObserver.com.