If the municipal election were about money, the Republicans would be poised to regain majorities on the city’s three elected boards and commissions.
According to early fundraising totals, the Republican Party has raised $34,300, compared to the $18,700 raised by Democrats, for the races for aldermen, Board of Education and planning and zoning. The newly formed Milford Independent Party has not officially raised any money for its under ticket candidates. The fundraising totals to date do not include what each party has raised for the mayoral races.
Republican Town Chairman Thomas Jagodinski said he knows an election is the quality of candidates, not money, but the party’s spirits are definitely on the upswing.
LIST: See who is running for office in Milford this November
More than 30 new members have joined the town committee, and two years ago the Republican had raised just $18,300 as of this date.
“Morale is high,” Jagodinski said. “The Milford Republican Party is strong and united.
“This reflects the enthusiasm in the party and people are excited about the campaign and are coming to fundraisers in greater numbers,” Jagodinski added.
Two years ago, Democrats stunned the local GOP by winning a 9 to 6 majority on the aldermen board, 7 to 3 margin on the school board, and a 6 to 4 advantage on the zoning board.
Just two years prior, Democrats were the minority on all three boards, and previously had been out of the majority for more than two decades.
Democratic Town Chairman Richard Smith said he’s not surprised by the fundraising totals, contending Republicans are backed by “big developers and a lot of the business interests.”
“We’re more of the party of the people, as evidenced by Democrats shepherding the first tax decrease in the city’s history,” Smith said. “At the end of the day it’s about the issues we stand for. Money won’t buy this election despite the Republicans attempts to do so.”
Smith said Democrats will get their message out by pounding the pavement and “sweat equity.”
But Jagodinski said he believes the Democrats seem to have more “politicians” in their ranks. He said GOP candidates share a similar philosophy: that local government should be about “neighbors getting together to make the city better.”
Milford Independent Party founder and mayoral candidate Peter Spalthoff said his underticket hopes to raise $5,000, but $3,000 is more likely. Concerning the mayoral race, Spalthoff said he has already raised $15,000 without conducting a fundraiser, and hopes to raise a total of $18,000.
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