HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — One of the most visible and vocal leaders at the State Capitol, Senate Minority Leader Len Fasano, has decided this term will be his last.
Fasano made the surprise announcement this week.
After nearly 20 years in public service, he said it was time.
“It was a torturous decision for me, I really love this place,” he said.
Fasano said legislature has taught him a lot and has molded him into the person he is today.
In 2003 at the age of 41, Fasano was elected to serve in the state senate representing the 34th Senate District of Wallingford, Durham, North Haven and East Haven. He witnessed the fall of Governor John Rowland in 2005.
He helped defeat a natural gas platform on Long Island Sound. He worked on legislation after the Sandy Hook tragedy in 2012, and was then elected caucus leader.
Under his tenure, the power structure in the senate was tied: 16 Republicans to 16 Democrats.
Fasano crafted nationally renowned healthcare policy with his Democrat counterpart, State Senate Majority Leader Martin Looney, whom he holds in high regard.
They also worked on a bi-partisan budget in 2019. It resulted in the current $2.5 billion rainy day fund, which has proven to be a vital safety net for the state in this COVID-19 pandemic
“It changes lives in a positive sense and that is what this building is about,” reflected Fasano.
Fasano will remain leader until his term ends in January. He said his family will now come first.
“I think my wife is happy; I think my family is happy…I think I’m happy about my decision.”
What about the future of the Republican Party? Senator Fasano said the party has good ideas; however, communicating them is a concern. His advice, especially to reach the urban voter, is to let people know “they shouldn’t be defined by their paycheck, but rather by their dreams.”
Editor’s Note: Jodi Latina worked in Sen. Fasano‘s office from 2010 through 2015.