MIDDLETOWN, Conn. (WTNH) — 27-year-old Ben Florsheim is now the official Democratic Party candidate for Mayor of Middletown.
Florsheim bested the town-committee-endorsed, city council majority leader, and two other experienced city department heads in the four-way primary.
When the votes were tallied Tuesday night, Florsheim had beaten his closest competitor by a comfortable 4 percentage points. More people voting for the youngest person on the ballot.
Wednesday, Florsheim admitted, “There were many people who, (when) I knocked on their door, said ‘how old are you?’ and when I said ‘I’m 27’, in many cases that relieved them because I look like I’m about 20.”
He’s answering hundreds of messages of congrats and has already spoken with all three of his opponents in an effort to bring the party back together.
It appears he won by simply out hustling the others, saying, “We talked to people who have never voted in local primaries before and we just did that every single day and that’s how, I think we got the result that we did.”
For the past five years, he worked in community outreach for Senator Chris Murphy. He considers Murphy his mentor and role model adding, “I learned from him the importance of going door to door, talking to everybody, of communicating clearly your ideas.”
Florsheim will face former Republican Mayor Sebastian Guiliano in November. Guiliano served 3 terms as Mayor and remains a popular figure in town, currently serving as the Minority Leader on the Common Council.