1st District Congressman John Larson now has a challenger in his quest for an eighth term: political newcomer John Decker, Republican of West Hartford. The 45 year old financial planner made the announcement during a taping of Face the State with Dennis House, set to air Sunday on WFSB Hartford.
Decker, who is also a board member of Business for Downtown Hartford, acknowledges his race is an uphill battle, but says this is the year the heavily Democratic district can turn Republican. The last time the GOP won that seat was 1956, when Edwin May rode President Eisenhower’s re-election coattails to win an open seat vacated by Thomas Dodd, father of former Senator Chris Dodd. May was voted out of office two years later.
Decker told me, despite the tilt to Democrats, voters in CT-1 are facing serious problems and want change.
“They are concerned about the deficit, the cost of living, oil, food, etc. These are concerns that politicians who have been there for years and years and years are missing.”
During the taping, Decker pulled out a letter he received from Congressman Larson after President Obama’s inauguration. In it, Larson wrote he would reduce the deficit created during the previous administration. The deficit has since doubled, and Decker cited that as one of the reasons he is running.
Decker has consulted one of the highly regarded Republican leaders in the district, former U.S. Attorney Kevin O’Connor. O’Connor lost to Larson in 1998, but raised the bar for the GOP it this oddly shaped district, that includes Hartford and several of its suburbs, along with towns in the Litchfield Hills.
Decker will kick off his campaign next week with an event planned for downtown.
UPDATE: Here is the interview: http://www.wfsb.com/video?autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=6848614
Here is Decker’s Republican opponent: http://dennishouse.wordpress.com/2012/03/23/gop-candidate-wont-write-off-democratic-hartford/