Primaries in pandemic: No handshakes or door-knocking for many candidates ahead of Connecticut’s Aug. 11 voting
With Connecticut’s primaries a week away, Republican candidate Mike Skelps in Middlefield hasn’t yet shaken hands with a single voter at a town fair or festival.
In New Britain, Democratic candidate Emmanuel Sanchez still hasn’t knocked on even one voter’s door.
And they’re not alone: The coronavirus pandemic has changed campaigning for every candidate on the Aug. 11 ballot. Social distancing — and general public anxiety — has ended the tradition of speaking at neighborhood campaign rallies or shaking hands with lines of people along parade routes.
“We literally had a strategy meeting to figure out the best way to reach people, and we never had to do that before,” said Sanchez, a veteran of municipal politics and the minority leader of New Britain’s common council.
“You have to focus much more on one-on-one talks. The idea of being able to address 100 people at a time — those opportunities are basically not there,” said Skelps, a finance board member in Middlefield.
Nearly 30 people in primaries are seeking either the Republican or Democratic nomination to run for state legislative seats; each one had to decide how to campaign during coronavirus restrictions.
Skelps opted to go ahead with door-to-door campaigning after considering whether it would make people uncomfortable. He concluded he would bring along a mask, but not wear it unless someone asked.
“I want them to see my face. I’m going to step back 8 or 10 feet before they answer, and it hasn’t been a problem at all,” Skelps said.
He has put extra effort into a Facebook campaign effort and lawn signs.
By providing links to other sites generating news, rocky101.com does not guarantee, approve, or endorse the information or products available on these sites.
The only purpose is to spread the news and give credit to the proper news feed source as they have worked hard to keep the public inform. Please visit the link pages and support their efforts.
- KEEP IN TOUCH
619.229.4000 MEDIA & PRESS