KENT—Democratic State Representative Maria Horn kicked off her re-election campaign for a fourth term in the General Assembly Thursday at 45 on Main.
Horn has taken on several significant roles during her first three terms, and last year became chair of the Finance, Revenue and Bonding Committee. “I’m very proud of the 2023-24 biennium budget we passed,” she told the gathering, saying it included the largest personal income tax cut in history, cutting marginal tax rates, increasing the Earned Income Tax Credit, and protecting more retirement income from taxation.
“We achieved that while adhering to the fiscal guardrails that have stabilized the state’s finances and saved the state significant money in borrowing costs,” she continued, “and have used those savings to fund critical needs in education and healthcare, for example.”
She said early voting is now available in Connecticut, expanding access to the ballot box and said voters will now be assured of “no-excuse absentee balloting.”
She referred to efforts to continue to ensure health care for Connecticut residents, saying, “We protected access to reproductive health care at a time when that is under assault in the rest of the country. … Of course, protecting access to reproductive healthcare also means maternity care, which remains a major concern at Sharon Hospital. So far, the state has protected access to maternity care at Sharon Hospital, but many challenges remain.”
She said she was proud that a “decade-long priority of regional health care advocates and leaders”—the health center in Canaan—will finally open later this year. “Watching that construction take shape thanks to state funding has made me really proud,” she said.
Horn said that the campaign will be relatively quiet in coming months as the state legislature goes back into session on Feb. 7. “The Democratic nominating convention is set for May 15,” she said, “and I plan to hit the campaign ground running soon after that on June 1, with a ‘Campaign Bootcamp’ that you’ll hear more about in the spring.”
But even with the campaign in abeyance while the legislature is doing its work, she said there is much to do before the campaign hits its full stride in June. She asked those in attendance to support the campaign on social media and to get involved in the local Democratic Town Committee or other political action groups.
And she asked for feedback from her supporters. “If you know of an important event I should attend or an issue I should address, please reach out to me at email@example.com or 860-671-1026 or my campaign manager, Melissa Cherniske, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
She said those who would like to volunteer as a town leader should contact Volunteer Coordinator Cindy Barrett at email@example.com.
Finally, she asked for the financial support she needs to qualify for Connecticut’s public financing system. “It’s that system, plus support from Connecticut’s House leadership that has made it possible for me to concentrate on talking to voters, not donors, for the bulk of my campaign,” she said, adding that to qualify, she needs at least 150 donations from constituents to raise a total of $5,800. “I am almost there, but if you are able to donate, even those $5 donations are important,” she said.