Shelton's Lauretti Wants to Be Governor

It might be late in the game, but Shelton’s mayor says he still wants to throw his hat into the gubernatorial race.

Mark Lauretti is attempting to do this by starting a petition drive to be on the ballot in the August primary. the New Haven Register reports.

Some might question Lauretti’s decision to run for governor given allegations about his involvement with an ongoing federal corruption case.

In this investigation, the U.S Attorney’s office “accuses Shelton developer James Botti of bribing Lauretti with cash and home improvement work to get support for his Bridgeport Avenue development projects,” reports the paper.

Lauretti says he never did anything wrong and has never been charged.

So far, about 150 volunteers have been criss-crossing the state circulating petitions. Time is ticking though. Lauretti has until June 8 to get the required number of signatures, or about 8,200 names.

The Republican mayor told the Register he "recognizes the challenges” that lie ahead, but says he wants to be considered regardless. 

The state Republican Party is expected to nominate its candidate for governor at a convention Saturday.

“ I think this (petition drive) is the most viable option,” Lauretti told the paper. “I think these are the most challenging of times, and it requires someone who is experienced in the public arena,” he added.

Lauretti says he is the best candidate to run the state and touted Shelton’s thriving business climate and Business Week mention as part of his success.

Anthony Simonetti, chairman of Shelton’s Republican Town Committee, stands behind Lauretti and is handing out petitions to help.

“I think the mayor will be a fine candidate for governor,” Simonetti told the Register. “He thinks on his feet, he listens, and he understands problems and looks for a practical solution. He tells people when something can’t be done.”

Among the Republican candidates for governor, Lauretti is up against Lt. Gov. Michael Fedele, Greenwich businessman Thomas Foley, former congressman Larry DeNardis, and former head of the Hartford MetroAlliance R. Nelson “Oz” Griebel.

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