Candidates for national office know that Greenwich's political pockets can run deep when it comes to financial support.
This spring the expected Republican presidential candidate at a fund-raiser hosted by incument state Sen. L. Scott Frantz (R-36).
So it wasn't surprising that another GOP candidate tapped Greenwich resources Wednesday night to support his bid to unseat 11-term US Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-3). About two dozen supporters and key Greenwich Republicans, including Frantz, hosted a fund-raiser for Wayne Winsley, the challenger hoping to unseat 11-term Democratic US Rep. Rosa DeLauro, whose 3rd Congressional District includes parts of Fairfield and New Haven counties.
Winsley said he hopes to raise nearly a half-million dollars to unseat DeLauro who he described as having "grown arrogant and entitled as if the office is her right." Attendees at the cocktail reception at the backcountry home of Greenwich Realtor Mark Pruner, who writes a weekly column for Greenwich Patch, paid a minimum of $200 to meet with Winsley, who lives in Naugatuck with his wife and family.
And judging by the applause, attendees including former Greenwich state representative Dolly Powers, incumbent state representative and Deputy Leader-at-Large Pam Sawyer (R-55) who drove in from upstate Bolton, Eva Maldonado who's running against incumbent Stamford state Rep. Gerald Fox (D-146), and Betsi Shays, wife of former US Rep. Chris Shays who last week lost a US Senate primary bid to Linda McMahon, all agreed with Winsley's message that it was time for a change in Washington.
As she arrived, Winsley thanked Shays for helping to launch his congressional campaign. "When you've been in the business as long as I have, you recognize talent when you see it," Shays told Winsley as she embraced him.
The 49-year-old Winsley, a 20-plus year broadcast radio veteran turned motivational speaker, said he wants to "help restore the promise of America" by helping to young people transition from a life funded by food stamps to full-time employment and "to remove barriers for small and medium sized businesses to grow and create jobs."
Winsley, who grew up in an orphanage and at Boys' Town, and is a US Navy veteran and author, said, "Our kids deserve more than a food stamp future." He also said that constituents are telling him in candidates' forums he is hosting they want a legislator is more responsive and interactive with them. "She's good at customer service ... they get a call back, but they don't get what they need," Winsley said.
The fund-raiser also was co-hosted by Greenwich First Selectman Peter Tesei, incumbent state Rep. Livvy Floren (R-149), Doug Fields, former Greenwich Republican Town Committee Chair Ed Dadakis, current RTC Chair Jim Campbell and former Ambassador Tom Foley of Greenwich for whom Winsley worked on his 2010 gubernatorial campaign. Winsley also worked on the brief 2010 gubernatorial campaign of Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton.