Elect Melissa Ziobron

A word from our Communications Coordinator.

My name is Edward Odell, and I am the communications coordinator for Melissa’s campaign. It may come as a surprise to some of you that I am a capital D Democrat.  I  voted in every election since I moved to Connecticut 23 years ago. I have strong feelings regarding the current president and the GOP in general on many issues.  Today, I’m taking off my campaign hat for a blistering hot minute to tell you something about my friend.

Back in 2011, I was relatively new in town and Melissa and I had only known each other for a few weeks. I was recently appointed EDC Chairman and she was the town’s EDC coordinator. I happened to be in a very tough spot with my business because of the negligence of a commercial landlord. Melissa never asked my party affiliation when she offered to help.  She put me together with a great alternative commercial landlord and location. She never expected a thing in return.

Similarly, not long into my term on EDC, Melissa ambushed me into getting involved with the East Haddam Board of Education regarding some unfair bidding practices.   I was just settling in, and here she was,  throwing me into the deep end of the pool.  I distinctly recall a joint meeting with her and several local officials one gray afternoon; I was not happy to be there.

The thing is, Melissa was right. The issue — it hardly matters what it is now — was entirely a matter of principle. Melissa was genuinely looking out for citizen’s interests.  There was nothing political at stake, no favor to be gained, no turf to claim. Just the idea of fairness and integrity.

Over the years I have gotten to know Melissa well.  We have collaborated on some things, and are on opposite sides of others.  We always remained friends, and never for one second have I  had reason to question her authenticity.  With Melissa, what you see (and hear) is exactly what you get.  And she’s not kidding about the listening.  That and her empathy are her political superpowers. That’s something we are in far too short supply of these days.

My point is this: there are a lot of things about the GOP that I take issue with.  That’s does not obviate the fact that just as much as Democrats can (and should) bring their guns (rather than sporks) to the metaphorical gunfight, we likewise need a healthy, sane Republican party to partner with if we’re going to work our way out of the mess we are in at the state level.

Melissa is exactly that kind of Republican.  I’m voting for her.  If you’re invested in the idea of getting past the insane time we’re living in, so should you.

Edward Odell
East Haddam, Connecticut