HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — All of the congressional districts in Connecticut have approximately the same population, about 700,000, but the 2nd Congressional District covers the most territory. It includes all of the eastern shoreline, from Madison to Stonington, and north along the Rhode Island border to the Massachusetts state line.
Democrat Joe Courtney was first elected 10 years ago in what was the closest congressional race in the nation that year. He won by just 83 votes, but has been re-elected fairly easily ever since. He is being challenged by business consultant and former U.S. State Department employee Daria Novak of Madison.
“We need to return jobs to Connecticut. Government is spending too much, we’re over taxing to much. We are less prosperous, less free, and less secure than we have been in many decades,” said Novak.
Courtney counters the criticism with just two words: ‘Electric Boat,’ and the hundreds of sub-subcontractors throughout the state.
“We are now well underway into the two subs a year production,” says Courtney. “The largest Navy contract for ship building in American History. The work is now cascading through the yard. 1,500 hires this year alone.”
Novak says she is a strong supporter of Donald Trump.
“[He is] Somebody who’s willing to stand up to both the Republican and Democratic Party and be a voice of the people and I think he has the intelligence and the capability and obviously the strength to speak out,” she adds.
Courtney says he has serious questions about Trump’s temperament.
“When you get right down to it, when you’re hiring someone for the most important job in government, I think those issues really matter,” said Courtney.
Novak says she agrees with Donald Trump that a major round of tax cuts is needed.
“For many years I’ve been saying that we need to have across the board tax cut rates, to deregulate, so that businesses can survive. We need to have peace through strength, a strong military so we’re more secure,” said Novak
“Across the board tax cuts, in my opinion, just, you know, kind of doubles down on this sort of budget crisis that lurches from one month to the next,” Courtney responded.
Another issue also places Novak in line with Donald Trump; safe immigration.
“When Joe Courtney says that we’re vetting people from Syria; it’s just not so. There is no organization in Syria that can adequately tell us that the Syrian refugees are not terrorists,” says Novak.
Courtney rejects that notion.
“In fact; the vetting process is extremely intensive and, in fact, since the events in Paris they’ve gotten even more that individuals at the U.N. refugee camps have to go through,” he said.