GOP favors Dean in Conn. AG race

Ashton Daigle May 24, 2010, 3:00pm


HARTFORD, Conn. (Legal Newsline) - Martha Dean won the Republican nomination for the Connecticut attorney general race during the GOP's nominating convention Saturday.

"Thank you God," Dean said in a short victory speech, according to the Hartford Courant. "Thank you, Republicans. Thank you very much. That is my short speech. Thank you."

The fight to fill the seat of current Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, who is running for U.S. Senate, has not been without several twists.

Candidate Ross Garber was a late entrance into the race after his sister-in-law Susan Bysiewicz, the state's secretary of state, was declared ineligible to run by the state Supreme Court.

The justices unanimously ruled that Bysiewicz did not have 10 years of active practice of law, as is required by state law. She had initially been ruled eligible to run by Superior Court Judge Michael Sheldon. However, the state Republican party later appealed his ruling.

Upon entering the race, Garber vowed to force a runoff, the report says. He only received 39 percent of the vote during Saturday's Republican nominating convention.

Dean, 51, an attorney from Avon, unsuccessfully ran against Blumenthal in a Democratic primary in 2002. At that time, Dean challenged one of Blumenthal's outside counsel policies.

The policy, which said private attorneys performing work for the Attorney General's Office couldn't contribute to an attorney general candidate, was later suspended by Blumenthal.

In 2005, the General Assembly passed legislation that prohibited contributions from state contractors and prospective state contractors to certain committees affiliated with attorney general candidates.

As a result, Blumenthal said the bar on contributions would be permanently superseded by the legislation. Blumenthal noted a difference between the policy and legislation, though.

His policy applied to all contracts, while the legislation pertained only to contracts worth more than $50,000.

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