3 Conn. Democrats re-elected to Congress

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Associated Press

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 11:08 PM

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — Three democrats from Connecticut won re-election to Congress on Tuesday, while winners had not yet been determined in two other congressional races.

U.S. Reps. Rosa DeLauro, John Larson and Joe Courtney won their races.

DeLauro, who defeated Republican Wayne Winsley, was first elected to the U.S. House in 1990 and is the longest-serving member from the state, while Larson will return to Washington for an eighth term representing Hartford and its suburbs after defeating Republican newcomer John Henry Decker. Courtney won a fourth term representing eastern Connecticut, defeating Republican Paul Formica, the first selectman from East Lyme.

In the 4th Congressional District, Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim Himes ran against Republican Steve Obsitnik in a district that includes wealthy towns in Fairfield County and Bridgeport, Connecticut's largest city.

The 5th Congressional District in a largely bipartisan district of northwestern Connecticut was the most closely watched House race in the state. Republican state Sen. Andrew Roraback ran against Democrat Elizabeth Esty, a former state representative.

In the 5th District race, the Government Integrity Fund spent $1.1 million on ads attacking Esty, calling her a tax-and-spend politician, while the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spent about $1.4 million to support Esty and attack Roraback.

Roraback said he favored extending the Bush-era tax cuts for a year for everyone while the tax code is reformed. He said raising taxes would hurt small businesses.

Esty said she wanted to extend the cuts for the middle class. She said Republicans want lower taxes for the wealthy but offer no specifics on spending.

Roraback endorsed the Keystone XL pipeline proposal to transport crude oil from Canada to Gulf Coast refineries, saying it would create 4,000 jobs. Esty said that the project would contribute to climate change and that the oil likely would go overseas.

Roraback called himself a fiscally prudent, socially moderate independent lawmaker, saying he would not support efforts to privatize Medicare because health care costs would exceed vouchers. But Esty repeatedly tried to tie him to national Republicans, including vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan, saying he would vote to put them in leadership positions to enact their agenda.

Roraback criticized the health care law signed by President Barack Obama, saying it will cost $1 trillion over the next decade and leave 30 million people with no health care coverage. Esty expressed support for the law, saying it would allow children to remain on their parents' health insurance until age 26 and prevents insurers from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions.

Esty, an attorney, served one term in the Connecticut House, from 2009 to 2011. Esty and her husband, Dan, a Yale University professor and the commissioner of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection under Democratic Gov. Dan Malloy, have three children and live in Cheshire.

Roraback, an attorney, served in the state House from 1995 to 2000 and in the state Senate from 2001 until 2012, when he decided to run for the 5th District seat. He and his wife, Kara, have a son and live in Goshen.

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