Post-debate, Michalik contrasts himself with opponent

State Senate candidate Rob Michalik highlighted his plan for moving Connecticut forward during a legislative debate sponsored by the Greater Bristol Chamber of Commerce Monday night at St. Paul Catholic High School in Bristol.

“In order to grow jobs here in Connecticut and keep our seniors, children and grandchildren from leaving the state, we have to do three things,” said Michalik, according to a news release from his campaign. “First and foremost, we need to get our fiscal house in order by controlling taxes and spending and appropriately addressing our long-term unfunded liabilities. Second, we need to take steps to eliminate unnecessary regulations that prevent businesses from growing. Lastly, we need to make sound, prudent investments in the areas of transportation, high quality education, and innovation.”

“When asked how we can best keep our young working professionals here in Connecticut, Mr. Martin suggested we need more Starbucks.” said Michalik in his campaign release. “It is disappointing to hear little mention of the stressful burden of debt and availability of high paying jobs. The key to keeping people, young or old, here in Connecticut is making sure we have good paying jobs, not the number of Starbucks in a given area.”

Michalik also contrasted his position on education with that of his opponent, Henri Martin, whom Michalik called “the leading anti-education voice” on the Bristol city council, said the news release. Michalik noted in his press release Martin voted against this year’s city budget because he wanted cuts in education funding – a position that put Martin at odds with every one of the other 14 Republicans and Democrats, each of whom opposed those cuts and voted for the budget.

When asked how to combat the large number of long-term unemployed and the shift away from manual labor jobs toward information and technology-based careers, Michalik, according to the press release highlighted the need for job training and education. “We have to control spending, but we need to prioritize funding for job training to help the unemployed and funding for education to prepare our students for the jobs of today – and the jobs of tomorrow,” noted Michalik, his press release said.