4 Candidates, 4 New Havens

Two candidates raised three-quarters of their cash outside of town in July and August. Two candidates did the opposite.

Of the money raised in New Haven, only one candidate pulled in contributions from all corners of the city.

Those two conclusions emerge from an analysis of the latest campaign finance filings in the race to become New Haven’s next mayor.

Four candidates—Kermit Carolina, Justin Elicker, Henry Fernandez, and Toni Harp—are competing in a Sept. 10 Democratic mayoral primary. Their campaigns Tuesday submitted financial disclosure forms revealing how much money they raised in July and August, and where they got it from.

The latest filing deadline came just a week before the Sept. 10 Democratic primary.

In July and August, Harp raised $173,982, more than twice as much as the next closest candidate, Fernandez, who raised $86,304. Elicker raised $29,254. Carolina raised $5,260.

A close look at the donations reveals stark geographic contrasts. The first is a divide between those candidates finding the majority of their support in town versus those finding the money out of town. Carolina and Elicker raised most of their money in town; Harp and Fernandez did the opposite.

The second contrast is revealed by where in New Haven each candidate drew his or her donations from. The map of each candidate’s donations from the current fundraising round reveals a distinct New Haven. In Elicker’s New Haven, mountains of money rise to the height of East Rock. In Carolina’s, the highest concentration of cash comes from Dixwell and Newhallville. Harp’s map is dotted throughout with donors, particularly in Westville. Fernandez’s New Haven is a relative desert, punctuated only intermittently with oases of campaign loot.

You can zoom in on the maps below for greater detail and click on the dots to identify streets where donations originated.


In July and August, 143 New Haveners donated to Carolina’s campaign. A map of his New Haven (above) shows the greatest concentration in Dixwell and Newhallville. He also collected from the most Fair Haven donors of any candidate.


Fernandez, who lives in Fair Haven, found only one donor in that neighborhood. Fernandez’s map (above) is the least populated overall of any of the four. He collected from only 66 New Haveners during July and August. He found most of those donors in East Rock.


The candidate who really owns East Rock, at least contribution-wise, is Elicker. On his map (above), the entire East Rock neighborhood is obscured by overlapping red dots indicating the location of his donors.

Elicker took donations from 278 New Haveners in July and August.

In some ways, his New Haven is the inverse of Carolina’s. The vast majority of his recent donors live in East Rock, but his map also shows strong support in Westville. Dixwell, Newhallville, and the Hill are almost completely devoid of donors.


Harp’s map (above) shows the most even spread of donors across the city. She collected from nearly every neighborhood in July and August, with the strongest concentrations in Westville and Beaver Hills.

The Harp campaign collected from 267 New Haveners in July and August. That’s nearly as many as Elicker in the same period, although Elicker has collected from far more New Haveners overall, if you factor in the donations from before July. Read about that here.

In vs. Out

Since the last campaign finance disclosures, at the beginning of July, Harp has increased the percentage of her support coming from New Haven donors, from 28 percent to 40 percent. The other campaigns have generally maintained their ratios of in-town to out-of-town donors. Elicker and Carolina are at 81 percent and 97 percent New Haven donors. Fernandez is at 25 percent New Haven donors.

Elicker tapped 278 New Haven donors in July and August. Harp tapped 267, not counting PACs. Carolina collected from 143 in New Haven; Fernandez from 66.

If you factor in the donations collected before July 1, Elicker has collected from the most New Haveners, by far: 1,143 have donated to his campaign. Harp and Carolina have both collected from the same number, 407, just over a third of the number Elicker has. Fernandez has collected from only 164 New Haveners overall.

When you look not at the number of donors but at the amount of money raised in town versus out of town in July and August, Harp’s in-town percentage drops to 22 percent. This indicates that her in-town supporters are giving in smaller amounts than her out-of-town supporters. The same is true for the Carolina campaign. Elicker and Fernandez’s ratios remain roughly the same.

With a higher average donation size, Harp was able to raise the most money in New Haven during July and August, even though she had slightly fewer New Haven donors than Elicker. She raised $37,656 in New Haven. Even if you subtract the $5,250 she raised from New Haven PACs, she still raised $32,406 from individuals, more than the $23,144 Elicker raised from New Haveners.

Fernandez raised $19,687 from New Haveners in July and August. Carolina raised $3,910.

If you factor in the July campaign disclosures, Elicker has still raised the most money in New Haven: $92,955. Fernandez has raised $66,952 and Harp is close behind, at $61,412.

Groups vs. People

Both of the above charts include money from committees as well as individuals. Harp was the only candidate to collect money from committees in July and August. Elicker and Carolina are not permitted to do so, since they’re participating in the Democracy Fund, the city’s public campaign financing program. Fernandez is allowed to do so, but did not.

Harp collected $22,150 from committees, mostly union PACs. Four of these have New Haven addresses, including Yale’s UNITE HERE Locals 34 and 35, which each gave $1,500.

The $22,150 Harp raised from groups is 13 percent of her total haul for July and August.


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posted by: anonymous on September 4, 2013  5:08pm

Good report. 

But did you happen to look at people who checked the “contractor or lobbyist” line on the donation form, versus those who didn’t? 

The fact is that Big Money Harp and Big Money Fernandez have a huge advantage in city contractor donations; Elicker and Carolina have a disproportionate number of every day residents.

The two Big Money candidates will have Big Obligations to pay back.

posted by: accountability on September 4, 2013  5:10pm

Wow. Awesome reporting. Great job, not only in the mapping and graphs, but in picking up cues from commenters on the last money stories.

Shows how dangerously narrow Justin’s base of support is, both geographically and, let’s be honest, demographically.

Also, too: “The Harp campaign collected from 267 New Haveners in July and August. That’s nearly as many as Elicker in the same period.”

Thus endeth the “Justin is the only one with grassroots support” meme.

posted by: dorothy25 on September 4, 2013  5:14pm

It’s really great to see further digging into the distribution of the donations.  I’m not surprised that Toni’s able to get donations from all corners of the city.  The same is true of the hundreds of volunteer canvassers.

posted by: anonymous on September 4, 2013  5:14pm

P.S. This article jumps to some conclusions.  Getting 7 donations from the Hill doesn’t exactly mean that you represent that neighborhood, which has 20,000 people.

posted by: robn on September 4, 2013  5:17pm

Appreciate the effort but Graphics alert…put the taller columns in the rear of the isometric view so they don’t block your view of the shorter columns.

Also, the charts need clearer titles.
Chart #1 is “In-town $ vs Out-of-town $”
Chart #2 is “In-Town donors vs Out-of-town donors”
A logical conclusion would be Chart # 3, “number of donations and average size of donations”

sorry NHI…tough love.

posted by: citoyen on September 4, 2013  5:19pm

Another superb report from the NHI. You guys are on a roll. This is called journalism!

I am prompted to wonder, what is Fernandez’s base of support? I can identify the bases of all the other candidates: Harp’s is among union supporters, Elicker’s is in East Rock, and Carolina’s is in Dixwell and Newhallville.

Where is Henry’s? One would presume in Fair Haven, but not from donation results, either this time or in June. He has a cluster of support at Yale, presumably a cluster in the DeStefano administration (how many of which actually live in the city?), and a cluster in the city among observant Jews. Any successful political campaign has a strong, identifiable, enthusiastic base of support. How successful is Henry actually going to be?

When he tried to go negative in the final debate (an attempt that immediately fell flat; you could just feel the adverse reaction), my immediate thought was that that’s the sort of thing that paid campaign advisers (of the sort Henry does have) suggest for a candidate when he thinks he’s behind. The Danny Glover visit seemed more of the same: create an event that will generate publicity, excitement, and a crowd, when you feel you need to do SOMETHING to kick-start some momentum.

I think about this in relation to Westville Man’s posts here at the NHI, who insists that Kermit is progressing under the radar with solid support that will come as a surprise on election day. Now we see that Kermit actually had more recent donations in Fair Haven than Henry! From his other comments over the months, I infer that WestMan may be someone with inside knowledge of the Carolina campaign, and I wonder if he might be reporting what they are seeing.
Considering all this, I ponder the standings that will come out in the primary results.  There is conventional wisdom, and there is maybe an opening for other possibilities.

We’ll all find out on Tuesday.

posted by: Winston on September 4, 2013  5:42pm

Great article and analysis.  But it would also be helpful to see the addresses mapped of non-New Haven donors.  Are any candidates continuing the DeStefano tradition of raising significant funds from out-of-state developers such as Northland, WinStanley and Trinity Financial?

posted by: Thomas Alfred Paine on September 4, 2013  5:47pm

All of the information in this article is quite interesting, but what does it really mean and what does it really say about the electorate and for whom they will cast their ballots?
Most voters do not make financial contributions to candidates even if they plan to vote for them.
People without surplus capital cannot afford to donate money to campaigns. New Haven has a large percentage of poor, unemployed and working class people who struggle to pay their bills and their taxes. These people will not likely contribute money to a campaign.
Only people with surplus capital can afford to donate money. Many suburbanites are wealthy. They donate because they know or support a New Haven candidate. People who live in East Rock, Downtown, the East Shore and Westville are generally more affluent than those who live in Dixwell, Newhallville, the Hill and Fair Haven.
The bottom line is the well-to-do give to political campaigns and the rest generally do not unless the donations are far less than $100.
None of this information can predict who will win this election based simply on the number of resident and suburban donors, the amount of their donations,  or the neighborhoods from which these donations originated.
Far more people will vote as opposed to those who make campaign contributions.

posted by: anonymous on September 4, 2013  5:56pm

Accountability:  Justin has more city donations than the three other candidates combined, by a wide margin.

posted by: TheMadcap on September 4, 2013  6:30pm


In regards to grassroot support from New Haven itself, yes, their numbers are closer in the past two months, but as this very article points out if you look at the past 4 months

If you factor in the donations collected before July 1, Elicker has collected from the most New Haveners, by far: 1,143 have donated to his campaign. Harp and Carolina have both collected from the same number, 407, just over a third of the number Elicker has. Fernandez has collected from only 164 New Haveners overall.

The real glaring thing here though is Harp, Elicker and Carolina are not equals. Carolina is the principal of a school in the city. Elicker is two term alderman, Harp has been a 20 year state senator for our city and was an alderman before that. Harp may have support in poor sections of town, but she has been big name and important enough for long enough to also have plenty of support among richer people as well, in theory anyways. The fact such a big name can’t get enough actual city residents to financially support her campaign is kind of glaring.

posted by: cedarhillresident! on September 4, 2013  7:09pm

Remember when Election day sale meant you could save a few bucks on a coat at the department store.

It mean election day goes to the highest bidder!

I may still wear my rose colored glasses but I really believe in the people of New Haven and know they are starting to understand that big money donors from out of town means the candidate will owe big money and NOT the people that live here. WAKE UP NEW HAVEN this is our chance!

posted by: accountability on September 4, 2013  10:11pm

Nice try everyone. Justin made a big deal about his New Haven donations. Last two months, they have the same number. End of issue.

Meanwhile, the number of New Haveners volunteering their time for Toni dwarfs all three other campaigns together.

I noticed everyone avoided the point I made about geography and demography. Just look at that amazing map. Machine? Tell me whose interests Justin’s going to be looking out for as mayor? It’s all there on the map.

He can say he’s about the whole city all he wants. Every candidate does. But look at where the cash comes from and what he’s actually tried to do. Here’s a guy who tried to shift the property tax burden from East Rock to Dixwell and Newhallville and build a redundant trolley to benefit shoreline commuters, East Rock and Downtown residents.

If you want to understand who Justin is as a person and a mayoral candidate, just look at the map.

posted by: anonymous on September 4, 2013  10:25pm

CedarHill, at tonight’s debate at the Black Student Alliance, Harp said the Democracy Fund should be eliminated.  The Big Money powers that be are feeling threatened because the Democracy Fund (non-special interest PAC) candidates have managed to raise nearly four times more contributions than Harp did from among New Haven residents. 

As a result, Harp has begun to change her tune on the Democracy Fund from “I don’t need it” to “let’s make sure that PAC money can drown out any public debate.”

Harp has an interest in making sure that suburban interests (who represent the overwhelming share of her support) continue to completely control the city, and that actual city residents have no voice. Harp seems to rarely responds to her own constituents as a State Senator, and votes for destructive measures like Keno without consulting them, so this should come as no surprise.

posted by: Hieronymous on September 4, 2013  10:44pm

Props where it’s due, which is mostly to NHI, but also to Carolina and, it must be said, Harp, who has some good talking points to make out of these data. Her total number of NHV donors obviously doesn’t approach my man’s, but it’s respectable and does seem to be the most spread out around town.

What’s fascinating, though, is the utter lack of support for Fernandez. The man likely has more signs than individual donors. I and others have complained about Harp seeming to think she’s entitled to the job, but the same can really be said for Henry, who seems to have thought that he could just swoop in, having not really had any presence here for the last five years, and claim his rightful spot in the mayor’s office. (Don’t get me wrong, I still think he’d make the second best mayor, but it speaks volumes when you have only one donation from your own neighborhood, compared to Jusin’s 7, Toni’s 8, and Kerm’s 12).

Maybe it’s an anomaly (and yes donors don’t correspond precisely with voters), but based on this it really does seem like there’s a chance Henry might finish last. That would be: (1) kind of just; and (2) good news for Justin, even if the July/August numbers are otherwise a mixed bag for him (he still dominates in individual donations total New Haven dollars, but his donations are down and Harp’s are up).

Finally, questions: are you counting every donation separately, even if it’s from the same person? Are these all new donors or do they include folks who donated in the previous cycle and then did so again in this cycle?

posted by: Sarah.Miller on September 4, 2013  11:10pm

Thanks to Mark Abraham of Data Haven for showing us who has the support of New Haveners.

New Haven donors:
1. Elicker: 1,143
2. Carolina: 407
3. Harp: 407
4. Fernandez: 164

Total money raised from New Haven residents:
1. Elicker $92,955
2. Fernandez $66,952
3. Harp $61,412

posted by: anonymous on September 4, 2013  11:12pm

Accountability: The map is incredibly misleading. Let’s look at the actual facts.

1) For one thing, Elicker has nearly three times more donations than Harp does from city residents. Carolina ties Harp. The NHI map doesn’t show that.

2) Second, on the limited NHI map, Harp has more support in Outer Westville, a wealthy area near the Yale Golf Course that is home to many city contractors, a key field in the finance forms that NHI has overlooked. Again, the map is limited compared to point #1 above, but that is the only significant disparity between the two maps.

3) In many of the city’s poorer neighborhoods, the map shows Elicker actually has more support than Harp. Unlike Elicker, Harp picked up about six donations in the Hill, 5 from Dixwell and about 12 in Newhallville.  These may very well be from DTC operatives, so to suggest that they represent the 30,000 everyday residents who live in these areas is bizarre journalism.

Having fewer than two dozen checks from DTC or PAC employees does not mean you represent thousands of people in a neighborhood. Having more contributions from city residents than every other candidate combined - over 1,100 - does.

posted by: TheMadcap on September 4, 2013  11:29pm

Whose interests is Justin going to represent? Alright, whose interests in Harp going to represent considering she’s being bankrolled by everyone that isn’t the city of New Haven.(Not to mention, Harp has her support concentrated in Westville and Beaver Hills, so I guess the mainly upper middle class neighborhood on the west side of the city is somehow much superior than the mainly upper middle class neighborhood on the east side of the city?). Not to mention you can try to diss his base of support, but I’ll remind people the two wards that cover East Rock and its surroundings as well as the Wooster Square ward are the only 3 that voted against DeStefano in the 2011 primary, while all of the rest of our lovely wards decide to enact major change by sticking with DeStefano.

posted by: robn on September 5, 2013  6:19am

There’s only one explanation for why 75% of Harps donations and donors are from out of town:

White Suburban Union Control.

posted by: True that on September 5, 2013  6:46am

As usual, nearly every post here makes excellent points.  What is most signficant, I believe, is that Carolina was able to et donations from a population that faces considerable unemployment and underemployment.  While the other three appeal directly to the middle to upper middle class, as well as to the very very wealthy for donations, for Carolina to get from people who typically do not give is one important example of the strength of his campaign.  that every e would raise more money than Carolina was predictable.  Elicker has the Yale professors and others in the wealthiest part of town. Harp has developers, political insiders, Unions, out of towners and the confused portions of the Black middle class.  Henry has this who live someplace other than New Haven.  Carolina has people who struggle to make ends meet, whose ten or twenty- five dollar donations represent a much higher percentage of their weekly take home than would a 370.00 donation from Elicker’s contributors or a $1,000 donation from Harp or Fernandez contributors.  While one cannot reasonably draw election result conclusions from the this donor list, in the final analysis, what would benefit readers most is not an analysis of who has how much money, but who is beholden to influential monied interests.  The only truly independent candidate in the race is Carolina, the only one with a history of taking on DeStefano and the political establishment.  Tangentially related, Harp continues to say that she brought community policing to New Haven in the 80’s.  Wasn’t that the era of the Beat Down Posse in the Police Department?  And as someone whil was there everyday during the Daniels campaign, I do not recall ever seeing her until the victory party at wha was then the Park Plaza hotel.  She should provde proof that she brought community policing to New Haven despite not serving as Chief of Police.

posted by: Brian L. Jenkins on September 5, 2013  8:20am

The suggestion that Toni Harp is somehow indebted to those outside donors who freely contributed to her campaign is nonsense.  Toni is and has been willing to listen to anyone who is sincerely interested in advancing the quality of life for taxpayers in New Haven.

Could you possibly think for a minute and realize that perhaps Toni’s donors owed her?

Toni Harp gained her popularity by being an independent thinker.  Toni has never been bought nor bossed by anyone.  She has always been a major supporter of workers rights and local unions having the right to lobby on behalf of workers’ interest. This as I see it is the American way.

I like many, too agree that the NHI did an awesome job with this compilation of data.

If volunteers were measured by money, then Toni Harp would triple Elickers local support. 

Toni Harp has been a State Senator for at least 20 years.  Naturally she’s going to exceed these local candidates in outside fundraising. Unlike her opponents, she has actually produced and delivered.

@ Citoyen,
Westville Man is engaging in nothing but wishful thinking.  Toni Harp is going to do well in Newhallville.  If the Carolina team were to garner less than two percent of the vote in Newhallville, I’m sure his team would spin it as if it were an upset against Toni. 

Kermit can either bow out gracefully (should he lose next week) and capture the respect he once had throughout the black community.  Or be recognized as an obstructionist and sever any real opportunity for a future run at being mayor. 

Hard choices will swarm the thinking of both Henry and Kermit next Tuesday.  Next Tuesday will also enable the public to peek inside the depth of their characters.  Will they abandon this fixation of running a flawed Independent campaign all the way into November?  Or will they do the right thing by showing solidarity and support of the Democratic ticket?  I’m inclined to believe that one will and one won’t.

Toni is running a “big tent” campaign.

posted by: THREEFIFTHS on September 5, 2013  8:30am

posted by: robn on September 5, 2013 6:19am

There’s only one explanation for why 75% of Harps donations and donors are from out of town:

White Suburban Union Control.

No they are call Plutocracy.

posted by: anonymous on September 5, 2013  8:54am


The second highest contributor to Harp in the 7.10 filing was her family’s business—the notorious New Haven slumlord called “Renaissance Management.” According to Mary O’Leary, Harp received $3,800 from family and attorneys connected to the firm. Renaissance Management is so bad, it has been fined by the Federal Government and the subject of many news reports. This is even before you get into the incredibly bad tax issues they have.

posted by: HhE on September 5, 2013  9:27am

The maps tell us two things in particular.

While Justin Elicker’s support is primarily in East Rock, a lot of his donors live in other parts of the city.  Thus ends the Elicker = East Rock, East Rock = Elicker—I should think.

The other is Mr. Fernandez’s campaign is auguring in.  I predict he will be dead last come Tuesday.  He can use Tuesday as an out, but I doubt his ego will let him.

posted by: Brian L. Jenkins on September 5, 2013  9:45am

Although I find myself quarrelling with the NHI for being somewhat unfair. I must willingly admit that Paul has done a brilliant job with this paper for the readers of New Haven.

Just a little advice Mr. Bass, you might want to color in your staff with a NO. 2 pencil a lot more so as to reflect the very people you write most about. 

There are a plethora of young, talented and passionate journalist of color in New Haven seeking employment. Find one my friend.

Pivoting, I left off with saying that Toni Harp is running a “big tent” campaign.  Toni (much more so than any of her opponents) has an eclectic array of people from all demographics under her tent.  Simply because Toni’s popularity has never been about her.  Toni’s popularity has been about we the people. 

So as the haters continue to pull at her skirt, she just keeps on getting endorsements and meeting with voters.

This constant barrage of negative criticism strewn at her, only makes her stronger and sharpens her resolve as she prepares to battle on behalf of the people beginning tuesday night. 

Allow me to appeal to the mature minded audience who read this great paper, let us not engage in the flavor of separatism after the vote has been reached tuesday night.  Let us show the young people in this city by example, how we as Democrats are supposed unite as one.

Uniting as a party is how Bessie Jenkins, Vinnie Mauro sr., Arthur T. Barberi, Walter Brooks, Fred Wilson, Wendell & Toni Harp, Hank & Jan Parker, Al Paolillo, Stanley Rodgers, Tomas & Norma Reyes, Ben Delieto, Frank Logue, Irv Stolberg, Jack Keyes, Bill Dyson, Louise & Rosa DeLauro, Lilian & Sally Brown, Chuck Allen, Moe & Jean Wadley, Carol Suber and a host of others who also taught me how imperative it is for the health of the parties future.

Many of these aforementioned individuals are no longer with us, but they all helped mold me politically.  And I remain forever blessed to have been in their counsel and in their grace.

posted by: Dee Rien on September 5, 2013  10:41am

Toni Harp’s supporters constantly mention how many volunteers she has. I have no idea if she has an army of them, or ten people. But here’s what I do know: when I got home from work on Tuesday I had three messages on my machine. Not only were they ALL from the Harp campaign giving their set pitch for the candidate, they were from the SAME WOMAN at the Harp campaign. Three calls over two hours from the same woman. Harp may have a lot of volunteers, but apparently they aren’t very bright, and aren’t using their time very wisely. This lady is just lucky I wasn’t home to answer the same call three times.

posted by: SSSS on September 5, 2013  1:34pm

Could a Harp supporter please tell me why specifically they believe that Harp would be the best leader for the ciy?  With a reason that has nothing to do with her number of volunteers, or the fact that she is an African-American woman with a diverse supporter base.  I’m talking about concrete reasons why she would make the best leader for the city.  Because as open-minded as I’m trying to be, I’ve yet to understand her popularity (other than the cyncical reasons constantly stated here that I do understand).

posted by: ramonesfan on September 5, 2013  2:33pm

@ Dee Rien:
Now we have an idea of how efficiently city hall is going to be run if Harp wins

@ Harp partisans
You gotta be kidding me.  The reason East Rockers prefer Elicker is because they recognize her flaws.  She’ll be a mediocre mayor at best.  She has little imagination, and from what I’ve seen, isn’t a hands on kind of politician who pays attention to detail.

posted by: accountability on September 5, 2013  5:10pm

SSSS I think you’re just trolling, but what the heck:

1. Toni has by far the most experience in government of any candidate.
2. Toni has by far the most experience making hard budget choices of any candidate.
3. Toni has actual relationships with the leaders in Hartford who appropriate half of our budget. Henry’s never lobbied hartford a day in his life. Justin got his colleagues to let him run up to Hartford to try to get reval phased in so he could shift the tax burden from East Rock to Dixwell and failed.
4. the city’s budget crisis is mostly a health care crisis. As the former chair of the health care committee, Toni’s been a leader on health care policy for decades. this past session she and Malloy looked Marna Borgstrom in the eye and dropped a 50 million dollar hit on Yale New Haven so that we could preserve access to health care for poor people. And she knows the issue from the ground up—her day job is organizing health care services for homeless people.
5. Despite anonymous’s penchant for rewriting history, Toni was, in fact, instrumental in bringing community policing to New Haven.
6. Toni saved funding for New Haven’s after school programs.
7. The City of New Haven elected a focused, disciplined and accountable Board of Aldermen two years ago. They’re doing what they said they would do on jobs, public safety, youth opoprtunities, fiscal responsbility and community development. Toni’s endorsed by a supermajority of that Board.
8. I’m going to run out of characters soon, but Toni will be the best leader for our city because she’s lived here more than six years, her vision for development includes good jobs, not just attracting multinational retailers to bring low wage jobs to the city and then using public money to build a school to train our kids for those low wage jobs.
9. She’s a proud Democrat, not a hypocrite like Justin, who uses whatever party or label suits his personal ambition at the moment.

posted by: Winston on September 5, 2013  9:23pm

Here is why we should be concerned about the big donations:  Of the $64 million taken off the grand list of taxable properties informally by the Mayor’s staff, the majority of the reductions went to DeStefano’s top ten campaign contributors.  See:


posted by: accountability on September 5, 2013  11:35pm

Sorry anonymous. The front streeters and Q avers who donated to Justin look and sound very much like the other dot clusters.

You can pretend that Justin doesn’t represent a particular demographic all you want. It’s only pretense. Justin isn’t a credible city-wide candidate.

Nor is he a credible progressive. His strategy has been revealed already: Fraudulently use Democracy Fund money to run for the Democratic Party nomination when you’re not really a Democrat. Then run as an independent appealing to independents, Republicans and those Green voters whose memories of his stab in the back fail them.

to win with that strategy, he will have to run hard to the right, revealing his true approach to economic issues. Just watch as he governs in the interests of his financial supporters, and all the “fresh solutions” that were supposed to benefit what he calls “disadvantaged communities” wither and rot. Except, of course, those really cool money management classes for food stamp recipients that he teaches at night in City Hall.

posted by: SSSS on September 6, 2013  8:40am

@accountability.  Not trolling, although I’m not leaning towards voting for her, and do support Justin at the moment.  I honestly don’t understand her appeal, and still don’t in spite of your answers.  Ok she has the connections in Hartford to get money out of the state…I’ll give you that.

As far as experience in government, #1 I don’t care or think that is a positive, #2 her experience is with the state legislature, far removed from municipal government.  I also don’t see why it should matter if she has lived here more than 6 years.  As long as someone has established relationships within the community, why does it matter?
I also don’t care that she is endorsed by Alders or that she is a “proud Democrat”.  I don’t even know what that last statement means, nor do I understand why that should matter as far as job description for a mayor.  I think you should ask yourself why it matters to you that she is a “proud Democrat” in a one-party city.  Shouldn’t we be focused on the best leader for the job?

posted by: robn on September 6, 2013  8:52am


Sorry to you because when it comes down to it, Candidate Elicker has literally been on his hands an knees in the dirt doing public service with disadvantaged kids for the last six years while Candidate Harp has been pulling a paycheck for a part-time job as Senator (creating the largest state per capita debt in the nation and paying no rent and no local property taxes).

posted by: David S Baker on September 6, 2013  8:54am

Oh good.  Homes that appear to have discretionary spending pinpointed on a map. Awesome.  Thank your stars burglars are not heavily involved in following online campaign finance reporting because this is a gold mine. 

Meanwhile, GREAT reporting, but no statewide map?  I want to zoom in on those dots in Hartford and point out some conflicts of interest.

posted by: anonymous on September 6, 2013  9:14am


You ignore all the points I raised. First, the map is incomplete (representing only a small proportion of all donors) and does not show total numbers.

Here are total numbers of New Haven residents who have donated to each campaign:

A. 1,143 residents for Elicker.
B. 407 residents for Carolina.
C. 407 residents for Harp, many dozens if not more of whom are also city contractors and lobbyists (the donor forms are public information).

Second, if dozens of contractors and lobbyists are not a “narrow demographic,” then I don’t know who is.  The average donation and relative lack of New Haven donors to Harp’s campaign suggests that she is the one who suffers from a “narrow demographic” problem.

Third, five donors from Dixwell is not exactly a significant figure, and it’s odd the NHI made claims like they did without reviewing donations from the previous filing - Elicker may very well have more donations than Harp from this area. Regarding Quinnipiac Avenue, Elicker has over a dozen in this round and probably many more before that. 

Bottom line is, it’s quite possible that Elicker beat Harp in every single city neighborhood, except perhaps Outer Westville where those contractors live.  Total is 1,143 to 407.

posted by: robn on September 6, 2013  9:59am


Ran the math and here’s another way to look at the data, sorted biggest to smallest:

<b>Avg Donation July Aug
Fernandez : $1,308
Harp : $652
Elicker : $105
Carolina : $37

<b># of Donations July Aug
Elicker : 278
Harp : 267
Carolina : 143
Fernandez : 66

<b># of Local Donations July Aug
Elicker : 226
Carolina : 138
Harp : 106
Fernandez : 16

Draw your own conclusions

posted by: accountability on September 6, 2013  11:51am

SSSS: “As long as someone has established relationships within the community, why does it matter?”

If I didn’t know better, I would think that this was a spoof.

He doesn’t. She does. He has some relationships in East Rock and Westville. He failed as a legislator because he could not establish relationships with his colleagues.

You don’t care how many alders support Justin? I don’t know who you count as people from the New Haven “community,” but his colleagues, most of whom entered public office for the first time two years ago, are leaders in the community. They are cooks and cook’s helpers, custodians, library assistants, social workers. You know, people with real jobs.

Many of them are terrific leaders with bright futures in the city. But they aren’t running for Mayor because, like Justin, they don’t have the experience and knowledge to do the job yet.

They are going to be re-elected almost unanimously because their constituents trust them as leaders of this community. So tell me, outside of his ward, who are all these people with whom Justin has these great relationships beyond multimillionaire trial lawyers, their 18 year old kids and the high income professionals writing him 370 dollar checks?

btw, I haven’t given toni a cent. I live in New Haven. I’ve given her more than a hundred and twenty hours of my personal time. That’s a lot more meaningful than writing a check.

posted by: Eddie on September 6, 2013  12:08pm

Mike Stratton is setting a record for inconsistency.

He announces his candidacy with anti-union vitriol.  He joins tbnh and continues to slander the union.  Then he leaves tbnh, while managing to slander Elicker’s strongest ally on the BOA.  He actually claims that Doug Hausladen sold tbnh to Toni Harp.  Then he recants his anti-union position, and claims he wants to be a union soldier.  Now he is back to spewing anti-union vitriol.  In such a short time he has managed to needlessly offend voters in his ward, firefighters, union members, and elected allies of Elicker.

When he announces his candidacy he claims that he will hire a part-time employee to follow up the calls that he receives from constituents.  According to him, his part-time employee would be responsible for procuring municipal services for constituents.  Unlike every other alder in New Haven, he observed, “I need someone to help me.”  Now he claims that he only wants an assistant to write newsletters.

Given that his positions change weekly, I don’t know that one can trust anything he says.  Still, his decisions provide insight into how he would govern.  He spends tens of thousands of dollars on political donations across the country.  He donates to Democrats and Republicans alike.  Instead of building a team of canvassing volunteers and inspiring them with his vision, he hired them.  Even now he plans to hire someone to do his work as an alder.  Just last night I saw him huddled on the street talking to police officers and distracting them from their beat instead of canvassing voters.  These decisions scream, “why build community, when he can buy political influence and change?”

posted by: robn on September 6, 2013  12:29pm


So what you’re telling us is that, measured by New Havens Living Wage law, you’ve donated $1,760 to Toni Harps campaign? Or even more if you earn more?

posted by: robn on September 6, 2013  2:29pm


As you and other UNITE supporters have often noted; labor has value. If so, as I’ve pointed out to ACCOUNTABILITY, UNITE footsoldiers working 25 hours or more exceed the maximum Democracy Fund donation if one uses NH’s living wage of $14.67/hr. Far fewer hours if, like the lowest paid blue collar worker at Yale, you make far more.

So your claim of wealth vs “team building” is pure bunk.

posted by: A Contrarian on September 6, 2013  4:33pm

“...cooks and cook’s helpers, custodians, library assistants, social workers.” You know, people with real jobs.  All very nice.  But why only working-class aldermen?  Why no socio-economic diversity?  Why no small businessman, or company manager?  Do no professors, doctors, lawyers, accountants, and the like have “real jobs?”

New Haven may not be East Rock, but it isn’t Newhallville, either.