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Carolina Appeals To Black Roots

by Melissa Bailey | Aug 9, 2013 8:11 am

(34) Comments | Commenting has been closed | E-mail the Author

Posted to: Politics, Dixwell, Campaign 2013

“How many of you know about Kingstree, South Carolina?” mayoral candidate Kermit Carolina asked.

“That’s my home!” called out a voice from the crowd.

“That’s your home? OK. So you understand,” Carolina replied.

Carolina, one of four Democrats running for mayor in a Sept. 10 primary, was making an appeal about roots—hometown roots, black roots, and roots in poverty—as he courted the black vote in the heart of the city’s African-American community on Thursday.

His appeal came as a second campaign’s internal poll reportedly showed Carolina in fourth place, behind Toni Harp (in first), Justin Elicker (second) and Henry Fernandez (third). All four are vying for their party nomination to replace retiring 10-term incumbent Mayor John DeStefano.

Carolina, the 45-year-old principal of Hillhouse High School, took his campaign Thursday to a place of great personal significance and personal ties: the Monterey Towers at 69 Webster St. in Dixwell. That’s the new incarnation of the former Elm Haven housing projects, where Carolina and his brother were raised by a single mom.

At Monterey, Carolina refuted the notion that he’s in last place in the race, urging the crowd not to “count me out.” He delivered an impassioned speech stressing his family history and framing himself as the candidate who’ll be a champion for the poor. As he has throughout the campaign, Carolina sought to leverage years of relationships he formed growing up in Dixwell, then working as a basketball coach and administrator at Hillhouse High, into support at the polls.

Melissa Bailey Photo Carolina showed up to a community room in the elderly complex Thursday at 4 p.m. bearing grapes, cake, and a large Dunkin’ Donuts “Box of Joe.” Wearing a white dress shirt, he addressed a room of two dozen elderly voters, mostly African-American women, most of whom live in the housing complex. Carolina gave a shout-out to some family members in the crowd, including “Cousin Mildred” and “Cousin Max,” who was wearing a family reunion T-shirt bearing the Carolina family name.

The candidate approached his audience by appealing first to family roots. He asked if anyone had heard of Kingstree, South Carolina.

“That’s my home!” called out one woman in the crowd.

Carolina said it’s his family home, too—his mother grew up in the small rural town.

He began an emotional account about discovering his own roots there. Click on the play arrow at the top of the story to watch.

“My grandmother was a sharecropper,” Carolina told the room. He recounted how, when he was in his mid-20s, his mother took him to the town for the first time to show him where she grew up.

First Carolina saw a nice house, not the house his family lived in, but a house whose television his mom used to watch through the window, because they didn’t have one. Then they went deeper into the woods to find her former home.

“She took me to the shack” where she and her brothers were raised, he recalled. “She showed me the land that they sharecropped, that was right next to the shack.”

“At that moment I really began to understand the level of poverty that existed, because when I walked into that shack, I saw this little heater that had heated the house during winter months. And I understood the struggle at that moment that my grandmother and my grandfather had taken us through to get to this point.”

Carolina thanked the seniors in the room for making “sacrifices” like his grandparents did.

Then he flashed forward to his own life.

“My mother raised me a block from here,” on Ashmun Street, he said. “I met my father one time when I was three years old.” His dad went away to serve in the Vietnam War, then didn’t connect with the family when he returned.

“My mother raised me” on a meager salary, Carolina recalled. He said the people in the audience and their families raised him, too.

“I want to give something back to all of you who gave me something,” he said.

As mayor, he pledged to work for the poor. He vowed to get more minorities hired on construction jobs; give New Haveners a larger advantage on civil service exams for city government jobs; and enforce a “commuter tax” on city workers who don’t live in New Haven. 

He described himself as the only candidate who knows poverty, and knows New Haven.

“I walk the neighborhoods. I’m among kids and families every day,” he said. He described running into a few kids from his high school out on bicycles this summer. He pulled aside one boy who he knew was going through a tough situation: The boy’s mom, a drug addict, was evicted from her home. So the boy is now crashing on his aunt’s couch, in a home without love and without three meals a day. He said the boy has allied himself with other kids in similar situations. They get together and ride bikes around town all day.

“They want to eat,” he said of the boys. “In the process of trying to eat, it turns into crime.”

“It’s not his fault,” he said of the boy.

He said the boy’s tale proves a point that separates Carolina from his contenders: “The difference between me and the other candidates” is “They don’t understand this. I lived it.”

Carolina said he knows what it’s like to have to go next door to “borrow two slices of bread,” and to take the last egg from the fridge and stretch it out into egg salad to scrape together a meal.

“I’ve been here. I hope it means something to you,” he said. He said he now makes a good salary as a principal, but remains committed to helping the poor. “I will never turn my back on the people in this community,” he said. “I want to help those who don’t have. It’s in my heart.”

The message resonated with Naomi Tisdale (at left in photo). Tisdale, who volunteers at Wexler/Grant School, connected with Carolina over a shared belief that too many public school teachers come from the suburbs and don’t connect well with urban kids.

“There are exceptions,” Carolina said, but in general “there’s a disconnect” culturally between suburban teachers and the city kids they teach.

Barack Carolina vs. Hillary Harp

Carolina ended his appearance with an impromptu comparison between himself and mayor’s race frontrunner Toni Harp.

The comparison came from Carroll E. Brown (at right in photo), a Hillhouse High staffer and president of the West Haven Black Coalition. Brown, who lives in West Haven, said she can’t vote for Carolina but supports his campaign. She introduced him and gave a concluding speech urging seniors to unite around his candidacy.

Carolina is like Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential primary, she argued. Harp, a 20-year state senator aiming to be the city’s first female mayor, is like Hillary Clinton, she said.

“They said Hillary Clinton was going to win,” Brown noted. But Obama pulled through.

Carolina later expanded on the comparison: Like Harp, Clinton had more name recognition, enjoyed the support of the party establishment, and would have been the first female in her job. Like Carolina, Obama was seen as young and inexperienced, yet had more grassroots cred working as a community organizer, Carolina noted.

“I’m no Obama, nor do I claim to be,” Carolina later clarified. “However, there are some similarities between what he experienced running for president” and Carolina’s current position.

Jason Bartlett, Toni Harp’s campaign manager, later dismissed the comparison: “To compare himself to Obama is beyond the pale.”

Elicker Claims 2-Way Race

East Rock Alderman Justin Elicker, meanwhile, argued that the real two-way race is not between Carolina and Harp, but between Harp and himself.

A recent poll paid for by Elicker’s campaign found Elicker in second place behind Harp, followed by Fernandez and then Carolina, according to Elicker.

“We have a little work to do on Toni,” he said, but “I have a little bit more than double what Henry has for support.” He noted that the race is far from firmed up: “The polling results were that the vast majority of likely New Haven voters are undecided.”

Melissa Bailey File Photo Elicker (pictured) said his campaign has surpassed 1,000 contributors.

“It really is turning into a two-way race,” Elicker said.

Bartlett dismissed that comparison, too.

“He’s too far behind to say that,” Bartlett said.

Carolina brushed off the news that he again had come in last place.

He said he believes standard polls don’t reach low-income voters, many of whom have government-issued cell phones instead of landlines.

“There’s no one that I’ve spoken to among low-income residents that has been polled,” he said. Elicker declined to give details on the poll, such as whom he paid to perform it, how many voters it included, and the demographics of those voters.

Carolina said the only polls he trusts are his “personal polls,” meeting voters face to face as he did on Thursday at Monterey.

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posted by: unionsteward35 on August 9, 2013  8:56am

Carolina is going to lose and so is Elicker.When will they get it drop out and do what is best!! And that would be to endorse our fist Afro American woman as mayor.

posted by: Walt on August 9, 2013  9:06am

Why would Elicker be called racist   if he cited his white roots when looking for votes, while Carolina faces no racist accusations for his remarks as described above?

posted by: Atticus Shrugged on August 9, 2013  9:26am

New Haven is a very diverse city (roughly 1/3 black, 1/3 white, and 1/3 hispanic, with a minority of other races).  To argue that you should be mayor because you are black and were once “poor” is reprehensible.  Without knowing it, Carolina is indeed arguing the Republican rhetoric of pulling one’s self up by your bootstraps.  Distilled to its simplicity, he argues: because I am black and was once poor, and you are black and are still poor, I am more qualified to lead you than you are to lead yourself.  It’s actually quite a reprehensible argument and one that is normally reserved for people who don’t associate themselves with the democratic party.

Of note, school starts in less than a month - how can Mr. Carolina campaign and run a school at the same time?  Both are more than full time jobs.  Really, why is there no investigative story into this?

I digress because Mr. Elicker is likely right.  This is a two person race and the others are merely pretenders.  Mr. Carolina will likely get fired by Mr. Harries in a year or two if his school does not get it together.  Mr. Fernandez is trying to cement a legacy and/or parlay his continued existence in this race into a position in the next administration. 

This will be a truly interesting 32 days.

posted by: Amityboy on August 9, 2013  9:32am

Isn’t the paragraph at the bottom the real story here? If Carolina is way behind, and polls show it’s a two way race, the headline shouldn’t be about Carolina…

posted by: Jefferson on August 9, 2013  9:48am

@Atticus Shrugged:

I generally agree with what you’re saying: for a single candidate to run a campaign in a diverse city by appealing to a narrow share of the electorate comes off as both arrogant and misguided. That said, assuming Carolina doesn’t expect to win (which would admittedly be quite the assumption), it can be very beneficial for advocates of underrepresented groups to stay as politically active in whatever way they can. Carolina could be a potent force for the black community simply by spreading awareness and forcing other candidates to talk about the issues affecting neighborhoods such as Dwight, Dixwell, Newhallville. Ron Paul did much the same thing for the libertarian cause in 2012.

posted by: Threefifths on August 9, 2013  10:26am

posted by: unionsteward35 on August 9, 2013 8:56am

Carolina is going to lose and so is Elicker.When will they get it drop out and do what is best!! And that would be to endorse our fist Afro American woman as mayor.

Let the voters decide who will win.


posted by: Amityboy on August 9, 2013 9:32am

Isn’t the paragraph at the bottom the real story here? If Carolina is way behind, and polls show it’s a two way race, the headline shouldn’t be about Carolina…

what polls are you talking about.

posted by: Atticus Shrugged on August 9, 2013 9:26am

New Haven is a very diverse city (roughly 1/3 black, 1/3 white, and 1/3 hispanic, with a minority of other races).  To argue that you should be mayor because you are black and were once “poor” is reprehensible.  Without knowing it, Carolina is indeed arguing the Republican rhetoric of pulling one’s self up by your bootstraps.  Distilled to its simplicity, he argues: because I am black and was once poor, and you are black and are still poor, I am more qualified to lead you than you are to lead yourself.  It’s actually quite a reprehensible argument and one that is normally reserved for people who don’t associate themselves with the democratic party.

You have had for the past 20 years a democratic mayor and what did black folks get.Nothing.Stop voting based of party allegiance.

Our people have to become registered voters, but we first have to get a better understand of politics. We go into politics in a gullible way, an emotional way. When politics is cold blooded and heartless, we must first learn the science of politics, and we should not take sides with either party. We should not sell ourselves to either party——MALCOLM X (from his lecture at Harvard Law School , 1964)

Both political parties have betrayed the cause of justice. The Democrats have betrayed it by capitulating to the prejudice, and undemocratic practices of the Southern Dixiecrats . The Republicans have betrayed it by capitulating to the blatant hypocr

posted by: anonymous on August 9, 2013  10:26am

Carolina should hammer the fact that Toni Harp herself (not her husband) paid zero income tax for four years, and only paid up after liens were places on her house, as reported by Mary O’Leary this week. She may be a nice person but how can a tax avoider be trusted to run a half billion dollar city?

posted by: Kevin on August 9, 2013  10:34am

Without going to its merits, the city does not have the authority to adopt a commuter tax (whether on city employees or more generally) and about two-thirds of the members of the state legislature (which could authorize the tax)represent suburban districts.

posted by: Threefifths on August 9, 2013  10:35am

posted by: Atticus Shrugged on August 9, 2013 9:26am
Of note, school starts in less than a month - how can Mr. Carolina campaign and run a school at the same time?  Both are more than full time jobs.  Really, why is there no investigative story into this?

School is not open 24hrs.He can campaign after school.

Mr. Carolina will likely get fired by Mr. Harries in a year or two if his school does not get it together. 

It could be the other way around.Mr.harries could be fired if he does not turn this budget deficit around which he knew about before taking over.

posted by: Noteworthy on August 9, 2013  10:36am

@AtticusShrugOff:

You critique Carolina for telling a story of poverty and roots and skin color. “To argue that you should be mayor because you are black and were once “poor” is reprehensible.

And Toni Harp’s campaign? She’s black and a woman; a union lover, a state senator who has managed nothing; and is completely ignorant of her husband’s sketchy business deals and almost two decades of being a mortgage and tax deadbeat even while owning a country estate and a million dollar home.

I think I’ll take Carolina’s story. It’s authentic.

posted by: Razzie on August 9, 2013  11:55am

I can understand Carolina’s desire to stay in the race and give the young (18 -25), black, urban disaffected voters a voice in the political scheme of things. He has attracted a substantial number of new voters to the process. And these new voters don’t affect Toni Harp’s primary demographic of multiracial voters who have been in the political mix for quite some time. The Kermit’s demographic was not really part of any candidate’s path to victory, so it doesn’t really matter if Kermit stays in or not.

The biggest argument against Kermit staying in is the one mentioned by Atticus: namely That he does a profound disservice to the students at Hillhouse by being Principal from 9 - 5 on weekdays, and a full time candidate in evenings and on weekends. By spreading himself so thin, he faces the clear and present danger of doing neither task to the level of excellence both deserve. If he cares for his primary demographic, he should elect to focus his attention on one or the other—not both.

posted by: Noteworthy on August 9, 2013  12:12pm

Razzie:

Carolina can walk and chew gum at the same time. Give me a break. And it doesn’t take a full time effort to campaign for votes.

Moreover - if that’s true, then explain to me how Toni Harp can be the full time and very well paid director of Homeless Services at the financially troubled Hill Health and work half the year in Hartford, and ever since, running for mayor?

posted by: Curious on August 9, 2013  12:35pm

I love some of these comments.

“The Kermit’s demographic was not really part of any candidate’s path to victory, so it doesn’t really matter if Kermit stays in or not.”

Yes, precisely.  The people who actually LIVE in Newhallville, Dwight, the Hill…they were never part of Senator Harp’s demographic to begin with. 

Good thing for Toni that Kermit doesn’t have as much pull with the big-money folks who control the levers of power around here, like Bob Proto and Gwen Mills.  I would hate to have to see her be escorted around more of New Haven by the cops, meeting the great unwashed, and being traumatized by what she finds.  Someone needs to shield her from that, like she was shielded from all of her husband’s financial misdeeds for twenty years.

posted by: Wikus van de Merwe on August 9, 2013  3:05pm

I just wonder if when Henry and Kermit come to terms with their lower levels of support if they will back Justin to defeat Harp, or if they’ll change their tune in an attempt to get a spot at the trough.

posted by: Brian L. Jenkins on August 9, 2013  3:38pm

I don’t even know where to begin.  Comparing himself to Obama? This guy should be starring on “Saturday Night Live.”

First and foremost, poverty has always been amongst us and will continue to remain until the second coming of Jesus Christ.

Because Toni hasn’t revealed her upbringing, certainly doesn’t in no way denote that she isn’t acquainted with poverty.

I am sick and tired of these political empty suits bashing Toni as they try unsuccessfully to be mayor.  A real man running for public office would run on their own merits and take the high road while veering away from besmirching others.  Toni refuses to attack any of her opponents, but only marvels at their desireth to participate in the political structure. 

Where was this guy last year when the needs of the poor were as prevalent as they are today?

Does this guy somehow believe, that he’s a card carrying member of the get out of poverty free club?

His story is as indistinguishable of that of almost all black people in america. So where’s his point?

Kermit infers ad nauseam about Toni’s accomplishments. If he is so envious of what Toni worked so incessantly to achieve, how then can he help the very poor he claims to care so much about, succeed?

My mother always told me that if you enjoy lying, you begin to believe it yourself.

Toni isn’t winning this race because of any union.  Toni is winning this race because of her.

There are a plethora of non-union people blanketing this city in support of Toni.  She has won many a race absent the union support.

Is she happy to have it? I’m sure she is. To somehow diminish her tremendous standing in the community to fringe support, is laughable.

Toni’s going to win because for one, she is the only authentic Democrat in the race.  Two, she has a record of doing what these other guys just talk about.  I would venture to say that all the authentic registered Democrats already know this about Toni and will support her accordingly.

posted by: markcbm on August 9, 2013  3:40pm

@Atticus,

Judging by how you distilled (distorted) Carolina’s argument, I think you seriously misinterpreted what Carolina was saying.

“Distilled to its simplicity, he argues: because I am black and was once poor, and you are black and are still poor, I am more qualified to lead you than you are to lead yourself.”

As I distill it, he was arguing that he was more qualified to lead the city than the other candidates in the city, not his audience members. 

Furthermore, is Harp not engaging in the same kind of identity politics when it gets repeatedly highlighted that she would be the first African-American female mayor of this city?  What do race and gender have to do with anything in this race unless its about identity politics?

@Noteworthy: we don’t always see eye-to-eye, but in my book, today you’re spot on.

posted by: Razzie on August 9, 2013  4:02pm

@ Noteworthy

Perhaps you haven’t noticed that all 3 of the other candidates are on leave from their full time jobs in order that they may campaign full time. Kermit is not. And with full scale preparations for the academic year now underway, being a 9 to 5 Principal is laughable. Or perhaps you believe being a 9 to 5 Mayor is good enough also.

Any candidate (or commenter) who cares about the dreaded Achievement Gap certainly would reject the split focus of Kermit’s day. It’s not at all about walking and chewing gum—Or is it? All I can surmise is that if he were Principal of Worthington Hooker, he certainly wouldn’t be carrying on this charade. Nor would these commenters be enabling such a farce.

posted by: Brian L. Jenkins on August 9, 2013  4:06pm

Elicker said, “We have a little work to do on Toni,” 

Will the real Justin Elicker please stand up?

Authentic politicians always stand a greater chance to prevail politically than do that of imitations like Elicker.  People register to become members of specific political parties for a reason.  They simply believe in the tenets of what the particular party represents. 

Elicker from the outset denounced the Democratic Party and instead chose to be an Independent. I certainly don’t quarrel with his decision to abandon the Democrats.  However, I do quarrel with his, and that of Henry and Kermit to portray themselves as Democrats just to fool people on September 10th.

Elicker has used some of his financial war chest to poll his numbers.  Much to his chagrin, he realizes that the very people in whom he thought were excited about his campaign, are far more excited about Toni’s.

I would agree with Kermit regarding the inability of these polling institutions to usurp the interest of black and Hispanic voters in the inner-city.  Where I disagree with Kermit, is the excitement about Toni’s campaign, lives there too.

posted by: Righteous Cyclist on August 9, 2013  4:30pm

The problem for Kerm is he can’t throw his support to Elicker in exchange for a favor down the road cus the boy don’t play ball like that. And he already burned bridges with the one candidate who would play ball and WILL win the election.

Now the last piece is for John DeStefano to give support to Toni. Meantime we keep raising money for Toni and spreading good words.

posted by: TheMadcap on August 9, 2013  4:41pm

“Toni isn’t winning this race because of any union”

She sure has a whole lot of support from unions whose members mostly live not in New Haven.

Also for winning this race “because of her”, her supporters sure get mad when she’s actually attacked for issues related to her, like her unpaid taxes or being closely related to a slum lord. This is especially true considering she doesn’t actually want to talk about policy issues whether it’s the wishy-washy answer she gave to the police union on how to fix their pension system(spoiler alert: she’s not going to do anything), the fact her comment about the Gateway and other construction downtown is it wasn’t car friendly enough, or the gimmick of budgeting that’s been going on as her time as chair of the appropriations committee.
http://www.ctnewsjunkie.com/ctnj.php/archives/entry/report_state_budget_is_full_of_gimmicks/

posted by: Jonathan Hopkins on August 9, 2013  4:48pm

Brian,
Let’s take that to its logical conclusion.

From the outset, suppose Justin (or any other candidate) decided to run as an Independent (or other non-Democratic Party candidate). He (or she) would be at an enormous disadvantage from the beginning. Sure, they could go door to door and interact with voters, but they would be completely absent from all the Democratic debates. The only time they could debate would be in the month between the primary and general election - so that leaves time for maybe one debate? While the primary candidate’s ideas have had a half dozen or more opportunities to be broadcasted to wide audience. It would be too easy for the Democrat to say “we don’t even know this person” “where have they been all campaign?” “I’ve been debating non-stop, where has this person been”.

It just isn’t wise to run as a non-Democratic candidate for Mayor in New Haven because the city has a large enough majority of Democratic voters and not enough party representative diversity to allow for a viable non-Democratic campaign. Nor is it wise to not re-run as a non-Democrat in the general election because there is also a large enough portion of non-Democratic voters (a third of the city’s voters) to win an election - assuming you also have at least some support from registered Democrats.

A solution would be to mandate that all Mayoral debates in New Haven are open to all candidates regardless of party affiliation, that way non-Democratic candidates would have the same opportunity for exposure as Democrats. Until then, it makes sense to re-run in a city like New Haven that has a majority of Democratic voters and Democratic representation but also a sizeable portion of non-democratic voters.

posted by: Threefifths on August 9, 2013  6:00pm

posted by: Brian L. Jenkins on August 9, 2013 3:38pm

I don’t even know where to begin. Comparing himself to Obama? This guy should be starring on “Saturday Night Live.”First and foremost, poverty has always been amongst us and will continue to remain until the second coming of Jesus Christ.

From what I read of jesus christ he was fighing poverty from the day he got here.

The Man of Galilee, the Carpenter, the workingman who became the revolutionary agitator of his day soon found himself to be an undesirable citizen in the eyes of the ruling knaves and they had him crucified.
Eugene V. Debs

I told my friends of the cloth that I did not believe Christ was meek and lowly but a real living, vital agitator who went into the temple with a lash and a krout and whipped the oppressors of the poor, routed them out of the doors and spilled their blood and got silver on the floor. He told the robbed and misruled and exploited and driven people to disobey their plunderers, he denounced the profiteers, and it was for this that they nailed his quivering body to the cross and spiked it to the gates of Jerusalem, not because he told them to love one another. That was harmless doctrine. But when he touched their profits and denounced them before their people he was marked for crucifixion.
Eugene V. Debs  

You should read the story again.From what I read The comparison came from Carroll E. Brown.She was saying Carolina is like Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential primary, she argued. Harp, a 20-year state senator aiming to be the city’s first female mayor, is like Hillary Clinton, she said.They said Hillary Clinton was going to win,” Brown noted. But Obama pulled through.Carolina later expanded on the comparison. Like Harp, Clinton had more name recognition, enjoyed the support of the party establishment, and would have been the first female in her job. I’m no Obama, nor do I claim to be, Carolina later clarified.

posted by: Threefifths on August 9, 2013  8:31pm

posted by: Jonathan Hopkins on August 9, 2013 4:48pm

It just isn’t wise to run as a non-Democratic candidate for Mayor in New Haven because the city has a large enough majority of Democratic voters and not enough party representative diversity to allow for a viable non-Democratic campaign

So why can not the election laws be changed so that the system of proportional representation can be used and get rid of primary elections and have Instant-runoff voting.Under the present voting political system it is a large and complex criminal conspiracy control by two-party power elites to keep the population docile, delusional and duped.The two party system is rotten to the core.It sustains itself both by preventing major political reforms and undermining those that get passed to temporarily placate the public.Arrogant power elites which are the political hacks who feel no obligation to be accountable to the public just to the crooked two party system.The two major parties maintain a collusive stranglehold on our government. Third party candidates are purposefully disadvantaged. Incumbents can thwart opponents. Worse, though the two major parties shout their differences, they are merely two sides of the same coin, two heads of the same beast,two servants of the Upper Class, and two protectors of the corporate plutocracy. They are criminal co-conspirators.Superficial differences between candidates keep voters entertained, manipulated and rooting for “their” team in the political game.

posted by: markcbm on August 9, 2013  11:04pm

@Brian,

“Where was this guy last year when the needs of the poor were as prevalent as they are today?”

He was leading an inner-city high school. Now he’s trying to lead the city by appealing to the interests of inner-city voters.  Are these things not obvious?

“Does this guy somehow believe, that he’s a card carrying member of the get out of poverty free club?”

Word?  Where is this club and how can I get a card?

“His story is as indistinguishable of that of almost all black people in america. So where’s his point?”

Um, I think his point is that his story is indistinguishable from that of almost all black people in America - that success is possible even for a kid from the projects if given the right opportunities.  Ergo, Carolina would be the mayor to best provide opportunity for folks in this city who have been or are in those. 

While I continue to believe Henry is actually the best person for the job, any objective, reasonable person can at least see Carolina’s point.

posted by: markcbm on August 10, 2013  12:54pm

my bad: “...for people who have been or are in those *shoes*.”

posted by: nadir1876 on August 10, 2013  1:11pm

Mark, you make some good points but Carolina is a short cut artist. He falsified transcripts, disrespected the man (Dr. Mayo) who promoted him over more qualified and deserving educators, and disparaged the reputation of several others. A close look at Hillhouse shows regression and a standard for student attendance that would be chronic truancy in all 50 states. I guess you can fool many of the people most of the time, especially now.

posted by: True that on August 10, 2013  2:14pm

Much of what is written in the posts misses the point.  Such point missing is par for the course, however, for Brian Jenkins.  Carolina never claims to be like Obama.  In fact, he is quoted as saying, “I’m no Obama, and I don’t claim to be.”. Allow me to simplify what I believe he was illustrating.

If you will recall, in 2008’ Hillary Clinton was the presumed Democratic nominee ( like Toni).  Clinton had significant name recognition (like Toni). Clinton had plenty of money (like Toni).  Clinton had a politically connected Husbamd (like Toni’s late husband).  Clinton was attempting to be the first woman elected to her position (like Toni).  Clinton had considerable political baggage (like Toni).  The press hailed Clinton as the easy winner (like they did Toni).  Clinton made gaffe after gaffe (like Toni).  When criticized, Clinton played the sexism card(like Toni).  Clinton’s campaign lacked focus and purpose (like Toni’s).  Many Establishment black politicians endorsed Clinton (like Toni).  Clinton lost (as will Toni)

There are at lesser 15 more eerie similarities I can expound upon to help
Brian Jenkins understand what Carolina was likely saying.  What is important to take away from presidential election is that those who believed in Obama never wavered.  His campaign showed that it is better to have deep, passionate support than it is to have wide but thin support.  New Haven deserves better than Harp.  And for Elicker, the only polls that matter are those that are used on election day.  Ask Mitt Romny where all this polls that showed him neck and neck with the President got him.  Polls are a joke, as are those who actually believe them..

posted by: robn on August 11, 2013  11:16am

So let me get this straight, the Harpies are complaining about Carolina’s identity politics even though Sen Harp has been sucking on the teat of identity politics for decades?

posted by: Razzie on August 12, 2013  11:26am

Is that the same Carrol Brown from West Haven who is on Kermit’s payroll at Hillhouse HS? And she is comparing him to Obama?!!! My, my ... and the anti-union haters rag on and on about out of town union influence being bought and paid for! Let he (or her) who is without sin cast the first stone.

posted by: Curious on August 12, 2013  1:54pm

Doesn’t New Haven have a Black Coalition?  Why bring in someone from out of town?  Especially when she works for him, if that is true…

posted by: Threefifths on August 12, 2013  1:58pm

posted by: Razzie on August 12, 2013 11:26am

Is that the same Carrol Brown from West Haven who is on Kermit’s payroll at Hillhouse HS? And she is comparing him to Obama?!!! My, my ... and the anti-union haters rag on and on about out of town union influence being bought and paid for! Let he (or her) who is without sin cast the first stone.

Were does Jason Bartlett live.Your point.

posted by: stick21 on August 12, 2013  2:49pm

RAZZIE,
        She is the same Carroll Brown from the West Haven Black Coalition, who has been working for him at Hillhouse… So bizarre is this guy he is beyond laughable….. He knows he is running a losing campaign. But lets not let the black female win, she can’t possibly do the job of a male candidate…It’s time to drop out of the race and save face by endorsing Toni Harp. It’s the only saving grace he has!!

posted by: True that on August 12, 2013  6:40pm

@Razzie,  I believe that is Carrol Brown from West Haven.  I Aldo believe that she works at Jillhouse.  And, I believe, she retains a constitutional right to engage in freedom of speech and expression, and to engage in the political process.  There are many employees of Hillhouse who have not publicly supported Carolina, so I don’t get your point in raising this issue.
what really matters is who gives money to tge campaigns and I can guarantee you that Harp has hundreds of out of town contributors, while the vast majority of Carolina’s contributors live in New Haven.

I can also guarantee you that Carolina will NOT endorse Harp.  Anyone who supports needs to explain how they can do so with all her issues.  It is beyond belief that those who support her conveniently fall silent on taxes (those owed by her family, as well as the fact that she does not pay ANY TAXES IN NEW HAVEN), her party house, which is now in foreclosure, the subhuman conditions in which her son allows others to live, her failure to pay income taxes for three years because, according to Harp, “my kids were in college, I must have forgotten.”. And we are actually supposed to believe she just forgot,that the IRS never sent her any notices?  Yeah, right.  She doesnt even live in New Haven, and she gets traumatized by walking down Division
Street. Let’s not forget that she doesn’t understand drop out rates, and her campaign manager was once a Republican and was convicted of DUI, driving without insurance and without a license.  Sure, she is just the type of leader we need.  Razzie, do you deny anything in this post?

posted by: Razzie on August 13, 2013  4:27pm

@ 3/5th’s

My point, more precisely stated, is that there is little way of knowing whether the endorsement (along with favorable comparison to President Barack Obama) represents the free and voluntary opinion of Ms. Brown (or represents the free and voluntary position of the West Haven Black Coalition if that is the intended purpose). The economic incentive for Ms. Brown is admittedly high to state or overstate her case in the hopes of currying favor with her prime benefactor. Obviously this is not a case of constitutional freedom of expression. More appropriately it is a case of the interplay of commercial speech with political ads.

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