Gov. Dannel P. Malloy took two long walks through the State Capitol tonight, senior staff and security detail in tow, for a little backslapping — and one sharp elbow.
His presence in the building indicated he probably harbored hopes of a breakthrough on the interconnected issues of budget and education reform, but he downplayed chances of a deal.
“We’re not getting anywhere fast,” Malloy said after dropping in on staff members in their fourth-floor offices, two levels above his corner office on the second floor.
“He wanted to pump us all up,” said Mark Ojakian, his chief of staff, who accompanied the governor, as did his general counsel, Andrew McDonald.
Then Malloy strolled through the building for the first of two evening walks around the Capitol, greeting surprised lobbyists, legislators and one U.S. Senate candidate: Chris Shays, a former fellow resident of Stamford.
“How are you guys doing? What’s going on with you?” Malloy asked a group of lobbyists outside the House.
They asked the same of him.
“I’m doing fine,” Malloy replied.
As he returned to his office, Malloy encountered Rep. Bob Godfrey, D-Danbury, who publicly chided the governor months ago by suggesting he was unused to dealing with an independent legislature.
Godfrey said that as mayor of Stamford the governor was used to rolling over a representative town meeting.
Malloy paused by Godfrey, and smiled thinly.
“I’ve been meaning to tell you,” said Malloy, who has demonstrated that he reads and remembers his press clippings, “Stamford doesn’t have a representative town meeting. It has a board of representatives.”