Jonathan Pelto

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Jonathan Pelto
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Former candidate for
Governor of Connecticut
Prior offices
Connecticut House of Representatives
ProfessionCommunications strategist, blogger
Personal website
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Jonathan Pelto was an independent candidate for Governor of Connecticut in the 2014 elections.[1][2] Pelto failed to collect the minimum number of signatures required to qualify for the 2014 general election ballot.[3]

Pelto is a former Democratic member of the Connecticut House of Representatives. He was first elected to the legislature in 1984 and served until 1993. He later started Impact Strategies Inc., a public relations company specializing in issue advocacy, and served as its president.[4] In 2011, he began "Wait What?," a popular Connecticut commentary blog.[5]



See also: Connecticut Gubernatorial election, 2014

Pelto ran for Governor of Connecticut as an Education and Democratic Party candidate. In order to qualify for a slot on the general election ballot, Pelto was required to collect 7,500 signatures by August 6, 2014. He failed to meet the signature requirements, ending his 2014 bid for for the governor's office.[1] The general election takes place November 4, 2014.

Race background

On March 28, 2014, current Democratic incumbent Gov. Dan Malloy formally announced his bid for re-election to a second term. He is re-teaming with 2010 running mate and current Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman for the 2014 race.[6] Early on, Malloy was flagged as one of the most vulnerable incumbents of the 2014 gubernatorial election cycle.[7] As the campaign season has progressed, the Daily Kos has reaffirmed Malloy's tenuous position, labeling the race a toss-up. The rating was assigned in consideration of a series of polls showing Malloy behind or rivaling Republican nominee Tom Foley in potential general election match-ups.[8][9] The Cook Political Report, meanwhile, has consistently rated Connecticut as "Lean D," meaning the race is competitive but the Democrats have an advantage.[10]

Malloy won the governorship in November 2010 following a hard-fought general election campaign against Republican Tom Foley, a wealthy Republican businessman and former U.S. ambassador to Ireland under former President George W. Bush. The contest ended over a week after the general election took place. There were several reversed calls on the outcome of the race before Malloy finally emerged as the victor.[11] At the May 2014 State Republican Convention, delegates endorsed Foley for the second gubernatorial cycle in a row, bringing him one step closer to a 2014 re-match against Malloy. Although Foley was the resounding favorite at the convention, fellow GOP hopeful and current state Sen. majority leader John McKinney managed to garner enough delegate support to remain eligible for the nomination, preventing Foley from running unopposed in the August 12 primary.[12]

One Independent candidate, Joe Visconti, will appear on the general election ballot alongside Malloy and Foley. Former state Rep. and career political operative Jonathan Pelto also petitioned to run as an independent, but failed to collect the minimum 7,500 signatures required to qualify for the race.[13] Pelto backed Malloy's 2010 gubernatorial campaign before publicly turning against him for his policies on education and taxes, among other issues, during Malloy's first term in office. Pelto's 2014 bid gained media attention in August when his candidate petition was signed by Ralph Nader, the perennial third party presidential candidate perhaps best known for his indirect role in spoiling Al Gore's chances at the presidency in 2000 by siphoning crucial liberal votes. Nader's sudden presence in the Connecticut Gubernatorial race evoked a sense of deja-vu for Malloy and Democratic strategists, who immediately accused Pelto of running in order to manipulate the election's outcome, not to win it.[14]

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