I am a Democrat. I believe in progressive values. So, the big question is, why challenge Rosa DeLauro in this year’s Democratic Primary?

The answer is an easy one.

Millennials reading this should take note of this fact: Rosa DeLauro has served longer than you have probably been alive.

We are in a time of transition. I regard this race not so much as an election to challenge an incumbent, but rather as one to offer voters a progressive alternative — one with a proven track record, vision, energy, and fresh ideas.

I run not out of hubris nor ego, but with a firm desire to make a difference. I am unhappy with the status quo, and I believe we deserve better.

As a proud New York City teacher of 15 years, I was blessed to teach children of families from all over the world. Teaching is a noble profession that continues to have an impact far beyond the classroom and our contact with students. I will give voice to the concerns of teachers, parents, and children.

Before my time in teaching, I worked in public housing within the City of New Haven. I made special connections and friendships with young people living in public housing and surrounding neighborhoods. The historical unemployment in our cities remains deplorable and unacceptable. While the stock market churns forward, our youth stand still.

Health Care is a right. In a country where innocent babies are born with acute medical maladies, where increasing numbers of adults need long-term care, and individuals can’t afford their prescription drug costs, Americans deserve to have peace-of-mind in an accessible, stable, and affordable model that covers everyone.

America needs to act as a moral authority to end conflicts and deescalate our rhetoric with other nations, and bring allies together to act for our common good. I have called for an end to the war in Afghanistan. We need to have a sustained program to assist war refugees. I honor the service members who protect us, along with those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice. My father served in a segregated unit in the U.S. Army during World War ll. My brother, Gary, was drafted during the Vietnam War. My niece and namesake, Bryanna Leigh, served our country in Afghanistan.

Infrastructure continues to be a thorn in the side of Connecticut’s 3rd Congressional District. It should be a no brainer. Instituting infrastructure projects means prevailing wage jobs, and prevailing wage jobs help grow the middle class. We have not had a single major infrastructure project in 27 years, since the Pearl Harbor Bridge in New Haven. What’s even more appalling is that there is no call to have any new projects. When elected, I will fight to change this injustice.

I have enjoyed historic wins throughout my political career. With this election, I would have the honor of becoming the first person of color to represent New England as a Democrat. We need to be more vocal within the progressive movement on criminal justice reform and seeking responsible social justice outcomes. As an African-American progressive, I will be a voice for those who cannot speak. When I join the Progressive Caucus, I look forward to being a welcomed addition as a man of color from the Northeast.

I find it reprehensible that in many parts of the country, it is still legal to discriminate against the LGBTQ community. As a member of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus, I will speak up and advocate forcefully for our rights. Too often, our society is full of preconceived notions, stereotypes, and out and out bigotry. It has to stop. We are too good to accept this any longer.

My background offers a different skill set from a 14-term career politician.

Change is coming. We need a ‘New Way for a Better Day’. Join me in this fight.

Bryan Anderson is a retired teacher and four-term Alderman from Milford, running for the Democratic Nomination in Connecticut’s 3rd Congressional District. 

CT Viewpoints will entertain first-person position statements of candidates for elected office that focus on policy ideas and principles, but will not publish third-party endorsements for candidacies or direct appeals for support. It is our policy to offer all candidates for elective office equal opportunity for comment. The views expressed by candidates are intended for voter education and are not endorsements of, or opposition to, those views by CTViewpoints or the Connecticut Mirror.

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