There’s always whispers and doubts when someone gives up a high-profile job at the state Capitol. Was it really for personal reasons? Or was she forced out?

In the case of Colleen Flanagan, there’s now hard, shiny evidence that she really did give up the 24/7 job of communications director for Gov. Dannel P. Malloy to find a little work-life balance. Just check out the diamond on her ring finger.

Her boyfriend, Michael Johnson, a lobbyist, pointedly waited to propose until Flanagan had quit the governor’s staff, broke in a successor and accepted a position with the Board of Regents for Higher Education. On Flanagan’s first day off, Johnson showed up with a ring.

Politics is a business of hard bargains. These two have learned how to close a deal.

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Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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