PERLOE: Why I’m Running for RTM as a District 8 Write-In Candidate

Letter to the editor Jonathan Perloe

I am running for the Greenwich Representative Town Meeting in District 8 as a write-in candidate. I write this to explain my late entry. Being politically engaged, I was pretty sure that at some point I would run for a seat on the Greenwich Representative Town Meeting. I just didn’t realize it would be so soon.

But when a candidate is likely guaranteed a seat on the RTM who espouses violence (“if you try to take my guns it will be an attack on my freedom. Attacking my freedom will end poorly for you.”) and blatant xenophobia (“This is America!! If you love Mexico so much, move.”), who denies climate change (“Fake News: Weather Crisis.”) and supports a Congressional candidate so offensive she’s banned by major social media platforms (Laura Loomis, FL-21), I feel voters in District 8 (Cos Cob) deserve an alternative choice.

In 2018 CNN exposed public statements made by Carl Higbie, the candidate referenced above. What was revealed was so extreme Mr. Higbie felt obligated to resign his position in the Trump administration. Since then Mr. Higbie has claimed the statements don’t represent who he really is. He offers variously that he was just doing it to boost his radio profile, that the U.S. military indoctrinated him, and that he was just being an “asshole.” His explanations ring hollow; the views above were all captured from his Twitter feed over the past several weeks.

When one RTM candidate recently dropped out, leaving only 26 candidates for 26 District 8 RTM seats, Jonathan Olsson stepped forward as a write-in candidate to avoid guaranteeing Carl Higbie a seat. However, further developments make it possible that Mr. Higbie will still be able to capture the seat unopposed. That’s why I’m also running as a write-in candidate.

I’m running for RTM to offer voters a choice of someone who values equality, empathy, integrity and the truth. I believe climate change is real, and especially threatening to a coastal town like Greenwich. I care deeply about our democracy, voting rights and election reform. I helped lead the grassroots campaign that succeeded in getting the Connecticut General Assembly to join the National Popular Vote Compact in 2018. I am on the steering committee of Voter Choice CT; the volunteer citizens’ movement to bring ranked choice voting to Connecticut.

I’m not asking District 8 voters to write me in just to keep divisive, toxic views out of Greenwich politics, but also because I will support policies and investments to enhance our public schools, protect our environment and look out for the interests of all Greenwich residents, especially the most vulnerable among us. With an MBA from the University of Chicago, I’m well equipped to assess the fiscal implications of spending proposals.

If you share my values, please write in “Jonathan Perloe” in Box 23E for RTM District 8 (please note, Jonathan Olsson, with whom I share a common outlook, is also running as a District 8 write-in candidate). Thank you for considering me to represent you on the RTM.

The deadline to submit a letter to the editor regarding candidates in the Nov 5 municipal election is Tuesday Oct 29 at 5pm.