U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy is on his annual walk through Connecticut trying to stay in touch with constituents. It’s a much different approach than Connecticut’s senior Sen. Richard Blumenthal.
“These walks for me are sort of a way to ground myself and make sure I’m not paying attention to the headlines which often and in fact most often are not what people in Connecticut are really caring about,” Murphy said.
Murphy was on the fourth day of his walk when we caught up with him in Guilford.
“The thing that comes up most consistently on these walks is the fact that people aren’t making enough money in order to pay their bills,” Murphy said.
U.S. Richard Blumenthal has a different style of politicking.
“I spend a lot of time at parades and fairs and town meetings. Any way that people can reach me,” Blumenthal said.
Sacred Heart political science Professor Gary Rose said Murphy’s trek, just like U.S. Rep. Jim Himes' bike ride, is a political gimmick, but an effective one.
“It is obviously a political move on his part yet at the same time I would say it does connect him more closely to voters,” Rose said.
But it wouldn’t work for everyone.
“Quite frankly, I don’t think Blumenthal on a bicycle would look all that authentic anyway,” Rose said.
“Blumenthal obviously reaches voters through television and as you said he’s more of a podium type of individual and that’s worked for him,” Rose said.
This is the fifth time Murphy has traversed the state on foot.
“People are much more willing to have an honest conversation with me when I’m in the baseball hat and a t-shirt and shorts than if I’m at an official event in a suit and tie,” Murphy said.
As for the different style, Murphy said no one works harder for Connecticut than Blumenthal.
“No one would say Dick isn’t in daily touch with what matters in this state,” Murphy said.
Buster Scranton was out searching for his hay rakes when he bumped into Murphy.
“I hope they can just keep straightening things out in Washington because this partisanship is just bad news. They’re not really concerned about the average person,” Scranton said.