Jamie Cosgrove has been selected to run for second selectman on the Republican ticket, paired with first selectman candidate Joy McConnell (meet her in a future interview). The current second selectman, Democrat Fran Walsh will not be running again; Andrew Campbell will be running with incumbent First Selectman Anthony Unk DaRos on the democrat ticket. Read the and check back for an interview with Campbell.
A former Democrat whose family background includes strong activity in Democratic politics, Cosgrove switched his affiliation to Republican two years ago shortly before running for an RTM seat.
Q: What made you decide to run?
A: I guess I just decided now is the time because I feel like these last number of years the current administration has been ignoring what made Branford one of the premiere towns on the shoreline. That’s been neglected. We need to get back to why Branford was a destination.
Q: What was one of the attractions, in your opinion?
A: We had a strong tax base, a mix of industrial and residential. Now, it’s shifting to become more residential.
Q: Is there one project you’d like to see among the first tackled should you win in November?
A: Definitely get the ball rolling again on . That, I was pretty outspoken about from the beginning. is currently in a facility that doesn’t meet their needs.
Q: Which of your personal or professional accomplishments do you think would be most beneficial to you as second selectman?
A: I’m involved in construction, estimating and managing different types of jobs. To get a job done on time an on budget, that takes common sense. That’s my strongest attribute. In construction, conditions are constantly changing from when you first look at the job and when you’re out in the field. You have to adapt, and you need common sense to do that. Plus, I’m willing to take advice. I don’t have an ego and I don’t think I know it all.
Q: Why do you want to be second selectman?
A: I think I can make a positive difference in the town. My wife and I made a choice to live in Branford and I want it to continue to be a good place to live for families.
Q: What do you think of the Democratic Party and its goals for Branford?
A: I was a registered Democrat when I switched to the Republican Party in 2009. Party ideology has little to do with municipal politics. Right now the town is being controlled by a faction of the Democratic Party. I want people to know the facts and know what’s going on in town government.
Q: Is there anything from the other side that you think will hurt your campaign?
A: If people just go and vote along party lines. This is not the year to do it.
Q: Is there anything from Republicans that you think will hurt your campaign?
A: No, I don’t think so. I think that if people just vote along party lines, that’s going to hurt us. Republicans are outnumbered 2 to 1 by Democrats.
Q: Win or lose, do you think you would run again?
A: Yes, I would.
Q: Why did you switch from Democrat to Republican?
A: I was going to a lot of the town meetings, selectmen meetings, RTM meetings. I was asked if I wanted to run for by Republicans. They didn’t know my affiliation, I would go to meetings and ask questions of both sides.
Q: What do you think you and Joy McConnell would bring to Branford that your opponents won’t?
A: I know we have a similar vision of how we see the town and how to build the tax base. I read that says he’s focused on economic development. He said that the last time, too. He hasn’t done anything to support it. The numbers show we have an aging population, and the numbers show people aren’t coming to Branford. What I want to focus on is creating a town that people want to come to.