McGee, Panos Face Off After Democratic Primary That Required Three Vote Counts
By STEVEN GOODE
October 09, 2012
If ever a political battle could be called anticlimactic, the 5th State House District race would be the one.
Hartford Democrat Brandon McGee, whose primary victory took three vote counts, including a highly unusual court-ordered second recount, will take on Windsor Republican Paul Panos in the Nov. 6 general election.
McGee beat political insider Leo Canty in the Democratic primary for the 5th District, which was previously represented by Democrat Marie Kirkley-Bey, who decided not to seek re-election. The district was redrawn to include parts of central and south Windsor and north Hartford and is heavily weighted toward Democratic voters.
"It's not going to be as intense as the first go-around," McGee said of the November election, "but it's just as important."
To that end, McGee, 28 and director of development for the Urban Alliance in Hartford, said he will continue knocking on doors and keeping people engaged.
"We're working on getting people to come out and vote – for the third time in some cases," he said.
Panos, 69 and a professional engineer, said he realizes he faces an uphill battle in terms of the voter base, but he is still taking the race seriously.
"I'm serious about representing the people who question the status quo," Panos said.
Panos, a member of the Windsor Board of Education since 1997 who currently serves as the minority party leader, said his best chance will be to capture the unaffiliated and disgruntled Democrat votes.
To do that, Panos said he will highlight the failed economic and business policies of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's administration.
"The guy is completely wrong on the economy," Panos said, adding that he will work to overturn those policies if he is elected in November.
McGee, who is running for his first political office, said he would focus on jobs, green energy and human relations if he is elected.
He also plans to seek advice from people who live in the district and know what needs to be done.
"I want to meet with the experts who can help provide a plan for the district," he said.
Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant.
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