GOP challengers: Sept. primary ‘likely’ for first selectman
Updated 1:19 pm, Friday, July 14, 2017
NEW CANAAN — The town could see a Republican primary this September.
When asked whether or not they would look to force a primary should they not receive their party’s nomination at the Tuesday night caucus, all three candidates for first selectman suggested they might explore the option.
“I think it all depends on what the vote is,” said Town Councilman Kevin Moynihan, who, along with Town Councilman Cristina Aguirre-Ross, is challenging incumbent Robert Mallozzi III for the town’s top elected spot.
“I think the fact that there’s three people in the race, probably is going to make the likelihood of a primary more likely,” Moynihan added, speaking at the the second GOP debate Wednesday night at Town Hall.
Aguirre-Ross also said she’d be open to challenging the Republican Town Committee’s nominee, should she not win the party’s nomination.
“I think it’s very likely that it might come to a primary, and I will assess it based on the number of votes,” she said.
Mallozzi, too, wouldn’t shut the door on the possibility of forcing a primary, though he said he feels confident in the support he’s received and hasn’t spent much time thinking about it.
“You know me. I love this job, and I don’t want to go anywhere,” Mallozzi said.
On Wednesday, Aguirre-Ross, Mallozzi and Moynihan tackled topics like natural gas, the town’s upcoming revaluation and whether or not to develop the downtown in the hopes of attracting new residents and grow the tax base or preserve its existing small-town charm.
The debate was the last chance for candidates running for first selectman, the Board of Selectmen and Town Council to state their case before Tuesday’s vote.
The Board of Selectmen debate featured Christa Kenin, a sitting member of the Town Council — whose platform includes preserving New Canaan’s charm, protecting schools and adding an “objective and independent” voice to a board she feels too often votes together — and incumbent Nick Williams, who has worked closely with Mallozzi in the past six years as a selectman and was previously a member of the Board of Education.
Doors open at the RTC caucus at 5 p.m. at the New Canaan High School Auditorium. Voting will begin at 6 p.m.