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Gov. Malloy: "You Don't Have to Love Me"

Heather Brandon digital illustration/Chion Wolf photo
Gov. Dannel Malloy said on Where We Live, "I'm a porcupine."
"I think people have a judgment to make. You don't have to love me. I'm a porcupine. That's okay."<br><em>Gov. Dannel Malloy</em>

Voters don't show a whole lot of love for either Republican Tom Foley or Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy. A recent poll showed them both with what's called "low favorables." Another study says the campaign is pretty negative.

Appearing on WNPR's Where We Live, Malloy told host John Dankosky that negativity is not exactly a new political phenomenon.

"I've never seen a campaign covered with someone leading, 'This is the nicest campaign, and the sweetest time that we've ever had, and these are just wonderful people who just love one another, and really, all's they want to do is just flip a coin to decide who actually becomes [governor],'" he said. "That doesn't happen."

The governor didn't push back against the notion that the campaign has, at times, gone negative.

"It may have," he said. "It's two guys going at it for the second time. I don't think I'm Tom's favorite person, you know? I don't. Really. He's spent a lot of time and a lot of money, and a lot more time and a lot more money going after me..."

Dankosky asked whether "maybe Tom isn't your favorite person." 

"Listen," Malloy responded. "Tom, he's the other candidate. He's got a record. This whole situation about being negative -- we talk about his record. He talks about my record. Those are legitimate."

When it comes to the idea that he's not overwhelmingly popular, Malloy said you don't have to love him to vote for him. "I think people have a judgment to make," he said. "You don't have to love me. I'm a porcupine. That's okay. But I make decisions. I'm moving the state forward. I have responded to crises -- Irene, or Superstorm Sandy, or winter storms, or, quite frankly, the terrible situation that played itself out in Newtown. I lead. That's what I got hired to do."

Malloy's hour-long interview also touched on issues separate from the campaign, from education to business climate to government spending. 

Petitioning candidate Joe Visconti has already appeared on the show. Republican Tom Foley appears on Wednesday.

Jeff Cohen started in newspapers in 2001 and joined Connecticut Public in 2010, where he worked as a reporter and fill-in host. In 2017, he was named news director. Then, in 2022, he became a senior enterprise reporter.
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