Erickson: Takeaways from this Election 

Submitted by Laura Erickson, who ran as the Democratic candidate for First Selectman on Nov 7

Takeaways from this Election

Another election season has come and gone.  Once again, I offer congratulations to Fred Camillo, Lauren Rabin and Janet Stone McGuigan and wish them all the best. Here are my takeaways from this election.

1.  Running for office was an amazing experience and I have no regrets.  It’s important for voters to have choice and the opportunity to choose candidates based on their vision, experience and priorities.  Our efforts fell short but we made headway on the margins for both the Office of the First Selectman and the BET.  The RTM held.  That’s notable.

2.  Our campaign was solid, it was clean and it was fact-based.  Statements to the contrary are political spin, and false.  From the bottom of my heart, thank you to the campaign team and all the volunteers for their hard work.  We brought pressure to bear just before the election which I believe was crucial in getting two Republican votes from retiring members on the BET breaking with their party to fund Central Middle School.  The RTM voted resoundingly in favor.  That’s a positive outcome for our community.

3.  Voters should be respected, those in the majority as well as those 7,876 in the minority. Fred is a popular guy, but he won’t be First Selectman forever.  So pay attention to what’s going on in town and make your voice heard. Show up at the Democratic and Republican town committee caucuses in January to have a say in who gets future nominations for important and powerful local offices.

I entered this race with clear eyed expectations and yet I did it anyway.  Competitive elections are critical to the exchange of ideas and are a bedrock principle of democracy.   I want to underscore this point for anyone who might be considering running for office. Keep a positive attitude and don’t get discouraged or distracted by the naysayers.  

My deepest gratitude to my family, friends, colleagues and supporters from both sides of the aisle.  I also want to highlight and thank all the department heads and Town and Board of Education employees who I’ve interacted with in my twenty one years of service to this community.  You all are first in class.  

Kind regards,
Laura Erickson