Lauretti prepares to raise funds in next run for governor

Shelton’s mayor of 26 years, Mark Lauretti, is preparing to hold his first fund-raiser for his 2018 gubernatorial campaign.

Just a week after announcing that he has officially registered as a candidate to be the state’s next governor, Lauretti said his first fund-raiser will take place later this month, on April 25. Lauretti also said people may make donations to his campaign via his Facebook page, which can be found by searching “Lauretti for Governor.”

A site for the longtime mayor’s gubernatorial campaign is currently under construction and will feature his full fund-raising schedule.

Lauretti said he’s confident that the amount of time between now and November 2018, as well as his prior experience as mayor and having run for governor before, will play out in his favor.

“I think it’ll play out very well with the public. I’m not sure the political people want to recognize it, but that’s a different issue,” said Lauretti.

Lauretti elected governor, a loss for Shelton?

Despite a large number of Lauretti’s supporters voicing their approval of his running for governor, others don’t feel the same.

Residents have taken to social media to voice their concerns about “losing” Lauretti in Shelton. The talk of Lauretti leaving the city after running it for 26 years has led some people to say they’re hesitant to vote for him as mayor while he’s running the gubernatorial campaign simultaneously.

“This is my home, but the things that are happening in Hartford affect all of us,” said Lauretti. “Most people are appreciative of the fact that we are in very good financial condition while others are not.”

Lauretti said his main reason for throwing his name into the 2018 governor race has to do with the current state deficit and his opinion of current Gov. Dannel Malloy’s job performance.

Malloy, who is in his second term, is undecided on his plans to run for re-election.

“It’s the only thing that people should be talking about, and unfortunately they’re not even talking about that in Hartford. They’re talking about passing more legislation that will cost people money,” said Lauretti. “If I’m not qualified, nobody is.”

While considering the possibility that he could win in his race for governor, Lauretti said he doesn’t know of anyone he would consider capable of doing the job he does as Shelton’s mayor.

“Unfortunately, when one person has held an office for 26 years it doesn’t leave much opportunity for anyone else to be involved to the extent that I am,” said Lauretti. “I’m not going to get ahead of myself, I’m not going to pass any judgment on what the future will bring, because it’s just too early. I’ve got to focus on getting re-elected as mayor and moving my campaign forward to run for governor.”

In 2014, Lauretti raised more than $100,000 for his second run for governor, but did not receive enough votes during the state GOP convention to qualify for the party’s primary.

He said coming into 2018, his approach to the campaign hasn’t changed. Lauretti must raise $250,000 from separate individuals.

“In 2014, I became a candidate in January of the election year. This year I’m a year ahead. I’ve got a whole year in advance to reach certain benchmarks,” said Lauretti.