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Jacey Wyatt: Not Your Typical Democratic Candidate

by Sophia Contreras

Nationally recognized as the first transgender candidate for governor, Jacey Wyatt, 46, of Branford is taking on the task of running in the gubernatorial race for the fifth time.

Wyatt, who previously was associated with the Republican party, is now running for the Democratic nominee and said she wants voters to focus on her plans for Connecticut rather than her gender.

“I had to switch my party affiliation from Republican to Democrat. I realized very quickly that Republicans are just not family-based [and] I just didn’t feel comfortable [running as one] even though I felt like a Republican,” Wyatt said. “I am not sure I want to be a Democrat. I am really not happy with Democrats, but I am running as a Democrat from a strategic point of view.”

While Wyatt does not seem to fully identify with either party, she claimed to have good relationships with both. Still, some could say that this instability in party identification might be what prevented her from winning the election in previous cycles.

Still, Wyatt, like many Connecticut residents, is disappointed in the state’s current leadership.

“Democrats have destroyed the state of Connecticut. I am Democrat and I cannot support [Governor Dannel] Malloy, and I can’t support our Democratic representatives,” Wyatt said.

Wyatt also stated on her website that she is ready to “drain the swamp,” referring to Connecticut itself.

Wyatt claimed to have a 20-point platform on her website, but out of the 28 issues on her website, only five have content posted.

It is partially because of this that one Central Connecticut student said she felt uneasy about Wyatt’s decision to run again.

“Wyatt is running on both her ‘experience’ and as a political outsider. Her plans seem vague. If you search for her position on ‘Bathroom Choice’ and ‘LGBTQ rights’ on her website, it is currently blank, which I find kind of offensive,” Jacey Long, a CCSU student who recently came out as transgender, said.

Wyatt also claimed to be “not an one issue candidate” and does not consider herself a person who represents one group of people because she said she hopes to help all groups of people in the state.

Wyatt said she plans to bring revenue to the state of Connecticut by heavily implementing tourism. Wyatt also claimed she wants to enforce tolls, but only in the towns boarding neighboring states.

“We can make up $250 to $890 million on tolls [and] with that money, we could reduce our high taxes,” Wyatt said.

Wyatt said she hopes that by implementing tourism, she will also increase traffic in the bordering towns, which will bring money to the state and be able to reduce taxes on the new tourism and toll dollars.

Wyatt also wanted college students to know that she plans to support them, as she said she, too, knows what it is like to be a student.

“I know the struggles of going to college. I am a person who sees economics, tourism, jobs and how to keep them here and how to keep recent graduates employed in Connecticut,” Wyatt said. “We have to stop spending $40 million to keep companies here. We should be using that money to make new companies. I [would] rather use that money to see students from Yale and the Connecticut state schools make the next Fortune 500 company in Connecticut.”

Wyatt is scheduled to make an appearance at Southern Connecticut State University in fall of 2018 and said she encourages voters to call and reach out to her about their concerns regarding the current state of Connecticut.