NORWALK, Conn. – Former Norwalk Town Clerk and mayoral candidate Andy Garfunkel will seek one of Norwalk’s state representative seats in this November’s election.
“We are getting an overwhelmingly positive response,” Garfunkel said of his intentions. “I’ve lived in Norwalk my entire life and I can say that there is a real need. People are ready for someone who is prepared to take a new approach to solving persistent problems.”
Garfunkel, a Democrat, plans to run in the 142nd House District, currently held by Republican Lawrence Cafero. Currently in his 11th term representing the district, which also includes a portion of New Canaan, Cafero has been the House’s Republican leader since 2007.
Garfunkel served as Norwalk’s town clerk from 2001 to 2011. He was the Democratic Party’s nominee for mayor in 2011, when he lost to incumbent Richard Moccia. He was also one of candidates in the Democratic mayoral primary last September, but he posted the lowest vote total of the four candidates.
The primary’s eventual winner, Mayor Harry Rilling, is backing Garfunkel’s statehouse run.
“I wish Andy well in his pursuit to become a state representative. Like me, Andy was born and raised in Norwalk and knows the issues which challenge our city,” Rilling said. “I’m confident he will be a strong advocate in Hartford.”
Garfunkel’s announcement also included support from two of his potential Democratic colleagues, state Sen. Bob Duff and state Rep. Chris Perone.
“For twenty years, no Democrat has represented the 142nd, and I believe that Andy’s candidacy will help fuel the change we are striving for,” said Perone.
Before being elected to Town Clerk, Garfunkel owned and operated a home remodeling business. He currently works as a real estate agent with William Raveis. He also holds a theatrical design degree from the University of Bridgeport and freelances with the Studio Mechanics and Stage Employees Unions in the tri-state area.
Garfunkel says he plans to run an “issues-based” campaign. He also expressed concerns that voters may be suffering from “campaign fatigue” after the contentious elections last year.
“I will work to change those factors that are making it difficult for people to get ahead,” Gafunkel said. “Government should be a tool for helping our family, friends and neighbors to succeed.”