I take a lot of pride in the changes this blog has forced in Hartford. P-card's, use of City vehicles, sexually abusive Department head removed, the list goes on and on. The biggest change this blog needs to make, or more accurately help make, is in the change of leadership to move our City into the future.
As a City we can not survive another four years of this Council and Mayor Pedro Segarra. It is time for change if we are to succeed. That change will only come about through education of our voters and some deep soul searching by those that claim to care about Hartford. Why do people run for Council seats, why do they run for Mayor?
I am more and more convinced the reason is over inflated egos and desires for titles. Possibly they also love the invites to the best cocktail parties. Ask most of our elected officials what they have done during the time they have been in elected office and they might have a hard time giving you solid answers. What have you done in your 16 years as a Councilperson is a question that should probably get you a lengthy list of accomplishments, except in Hartford it will probably get the glasses slid down the bridge of the nose and a blank stare.Why would the voters re-elect a Councilperson after their term as Council President ended in shame with a Mayor you rubber stamped for eventually resigned in shame facing corruption charges. Yes , a solid reputation of excellence in moving Hartford forward.
Hartford is in a good position this year if the voters educate themselves and if the Democratic Town Committee stops playing politics with the lives and futures of Hartford's residents. The time is here to put the political payback and dirty deal making aside and select the best possible candidates to run our City.
Up until a few weeks ago, the choice for me for Mayor was a tough one. I had met Luke Bronin at the Governors Office. I had known John Gale from being out in the community, I had seen Councilman Cruz as a fill in Councilperson when he was elevated to fill an unexpired Council term. I probably would have supported Luke Bronin as the most capable of the candidates. I still think Bronin , at a different time in Hartford's future, could provide a level of leadership this city is sadly lacking now.
That all changed when Hartford's Judge of Probate retired last month after 31 years in that position. I had never met Bob Killian. I knew who he was and knew of him and his family, who wouldn't if you had any sense of Hartford's and Connecticut's history. I was surprised when Judge Killian called me and asked if we could sit down and talk. I agreed, even though I had thought I had made up my mind that Bronin was my choice.
We met at a restaurant for lunch and ended up leaving almost 4 hours later. I was impressed. No , I was very impressed.This man gets it, and he also has an amazing knowledge of Hartford's past and its history. He also has a love for this City that can't be made up. His love for Hartford, its people and its neighborhoods comes through loud and clear. I never felt that love in talking to Pedro Segarra and although it is there with Bronin and Gale, the compassion for Hartford from Killian exudes in everything he has to say.
I think part of that might be his 31 years as Hartford's Probate Judge. Bob has dealt with over 51,000 Hartford families during those 31 years. Many of those dealing were at less than favorable times, deaths, drug and alcohol issues and mental illness issues, removing children from less than desirable home issues and the bright side of the job such as completing adoptions and placing children with relatives and others to provide them the nurturing to make them productive adults.
I think those 31 years also provided Bob with the nurturing and compassion that uniquely suits him to be Mayor of our City. Bob's love and compassion for Hartford come through in just about every conversation he has about Hartford. And just about every conversation Bob has is about Hartford and his vision for the City he was born in and grew up in ( as well as his father and family)
Bob also seems very well versed in issues facing Hartford, budget, pensions, land use, you name it, he understands it, or is willing to listen and learn. The leadership and vision for Hartford are exemplary qualities that puts Killian ahead, definitely ahead of our current Mayor . His knowledge of Hartford's issues can only come from his experiences living here and growing up here. I think I can honestly say that there have been very few people that have impressed me enough as to their leadership and knowledge of City government as Bob Killian possesses.
Listen to what he has to say and decide for yourself. Isn't it about time we have leadership at City Hall that cares about each and everyone of our residents? Isn't it time we have a Mayor that understands City government and is able to work within it to make the City we love move forward and succeed?
After this short time of getting to know Bob Killian, I am ready to say Bob is the best choice to move this City forward., The Mayor's Office is not a stepping stone for Bob. He doesn't want to be a Senator or Congressman 10 years from now, he wants to see Hartford thriving and it's residents and business owners thriving 10 years from now.
I support Bob Killian for Mayor and I truly believe he is the best hope for our future.