By MIKE CHAIKEN
Former state representative Chris Wright is stepping back into Connecticut politics by running for state senator in the 31st district on the Democratic ticket.
Wright will run against Henri Martin, a Republican, in the district that includes Bristol, Plainville, Plymouth, Thomaston, and Harwinton.
Previously, Wright served in the 77th district until he lost to the current representative, Cara Pavalock D’Amato.
After being out of office in Hartford for a couple of years, Wright said he wanted to return to the General Assembly “because I believe that the people of the 31st District deserve a senator who is more independent and less interested in following his party’s leadership. Connecticut has always had a strong tradition of parties and politicians working together to address the issues that faced our state. I believe that we have been moving away from this tradition, and I will work to bring it back.”
Wright said, “Our current senator has been voting in a manner that I feel is not in the best interests of the people of the district and I intend speak to the voters about our differences on a number of important issues as the campaign goes on.”
Connecticut’s General Assembly has been embroiled in turmoil the past two years over budget issues. Wright said, “I want to join the conversation because I am someone who is willing to listen to all sides of an issue before I decide how I will vote.”
“As someone with a (bachelor’s degree) in economics and having worked at the FDIC for eight years, I have an understanding of the financial and economic consequences of the decisions that legislators make,” said Wright. “As someone who has been to seminary and studied for the ministry, I am also keenly aware of the human consequences of those decisions as well.”
“During my time in the legislature,” Wright said, “I always strove to learn as much as I could about the different arguments surrounding each issue and then act in a way that would benefit the people I represented the most. While naturally there was no way that I could make everyone happy with the actions that I took as a legislator, I always treated each individual and group with respect and dignity.”
If sent to Hartford as the district’s senator, Wright said, “I hope to make Connecticut a place where people and businesses want to locate, both for economic and personal reasons. I hope to work with others in state government to improve our economy, hold the line on spending and taxes while at the same time making the kind of investments in our state – such as in education and transportation and economic development – that we need to grow and also to encourage the kind of social and cultural attractions that younger people are looking for in their future home. I will fight for sustainable growth principles, such as the reclamation and reuse of brownfields and preservation of our few remaining open spaces, in our development plans.”
“During my previous tenure in the legislature,” said Wright, “I was a member of the bipartisan Manufacturing Caucus and will be a member once again if elected to the senate. As a representative, I was not afraid to oppose my leadership, even voting against me own leadership and opposing the budget and I will bring this kind of thoughtful independence with me to the Senate.”
As for how he will help the district if elected, Wright said, “I believe that both my educational and personal experiences will make me a senator whose presence benefits both the people of the 31st District, and the people of Connecticut. The district has tens of thousands of hardworking middle class workers, and as one of the few legislators who actually punches a time clock, I can best understand their challenges because I am one of them.”
“The district also has thousand of residents who make their living in the insurance and financial services sectors, and I fully appreciate their importance to our district and to our state and I will fight to keep them and their employers right here,” said Wright.
“As an employee in a large, busy emergency room, I see every day the struggles people have finding affordable healthcare, and will work to make sure that people aren’t forced to go without healthcare due to their financial or employment situation, their gender or because of any pre-existing medical condition they may have,” said Wright.
“The 31st is a district which has a large senior population as well as many young people just starting out, and we need programs which will benefit each,” said Wright.
“As the state senator from Bristol, Plainville, Plymouth, Harwinton and Thomaston, I will strive to be the voice of all the people and will work for policies that will benefit all of the people, not just a chosen few,” said Wright.
Comments? Email mchaiken@BristolObserver.com.