In Connecticut, facts no longer matter, according to Chadwick Ciocci, the GOP candidate picked Monday to run against Democrat Anthony Musto.
He cited confused financial assessments, high taxes and a negative business climate, among the state's problems.
He quoted Abraham Lincoln, who said, "If a man can convince you that 2 plus 2 equals anything but 4, then you can't possibly win the argument because facts don't matter."
"I'm running because I envision a Connecticut where everyone who wants a job has a job, where our elected officials don't just treat your taxpayer dollars like it was their own money," he told supporters at the Monday night. The district includes Trumbull, Monroe and Bridgeport.
"This election is about jobs, out-of-control spending, deficits, regulation and thelargest retroactive income tax increase in our state's history," Ciocci said.
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He recalled a story in which a Rhode Island moving company owner tried to open a branch in Connecticut but was rejected after two other companies opposed him and admitted "they were simply protecting their self-interest."
Ciocci also called for electing the Siting Council, which reviews cell tower applications. It recently approved a new cell tower for the Police Station to the opposition of neighbors. Police Chief Tom Kiely had asked for one to improve radio and communications.
However, the council did reduce the height of the tower from the original proposal. Construction has not begun yet.
The majority leader proposed allowing students who are able to complete high school in three years to split the cost of their education with the town. He also called for reviewing funded and unfunded mandates, improving public transportation and repealing Gov. Dannel Malloy's tax plan.
Trumbull First Selectman Tim Herbst and Town Councilwoman Kristy Waizenneger both praised Ciocci.
"This election is of critical importance," Herbst said, adding that Ciocci will "place the people's interest ahead of special interests."
The district needs a candidate who will "take a stand, not just a seat" and fight.
"It's time to retire the rubberstamper we currently have," he said, referring to Musto.
Musto voted for Malloy's tax increase, and has not "positively impacted" his constituents, the first selectman said. Further, he added that Ciocci fought hard to get onto the Town Council in a democratic district, maintained the seat and became majority leader chairman of the Council's Education Committee.
"I would put Chadwick Ciocci's record up against Anthony Musto's any day of the week," Herbst said.
Waizenegger also praised Ciocci.
"I was immediately impressed with his understanding of government," she said. "We're overtaxed and over-regulated. We need a leader in Hartford and I believe Chadwick Ciocci is that leader."
He has taken some unpopular but "right" positions, and has bold ideas and real solutions, she added.
Ciocci, a realtor who studied philosophy in college, is known for his opposition to grants and often quotes philosophy in meetings. He was elected to the Council as a senior.
His opponent, Musto, is a local tax attorney.