Incumbent faces off against newcomer in 5th House District

Rep. Brandon McGee, D-Hartford, who’s seeking a fourth term in the 5th House District, faces off against a political newcomer, Republican Charles Jackson of Windsor.

McGee, 34, who lives in Hartford and works as a marketing outreach coordinator for the Capitol Region Education Council, in August defeated his party’s endorsed candidate, Lawrence Jaggon, in a landslide primary victory.

McGee has a master of science degree in management and organizational leadership from Albertus Magnus College and a bachelor of arts in political science from Alabama State University.

He said his endorsements include the Working Families Party, the Connecticut AFL-CIO, Connecticut Young Democrats, and the Service Employees International Union.

“There is an energy you feel going door-to-door, talking with voters,” he said.

As vice chairman of the legislature’s Black and Puerto Rican Caucus, McGee said he’s increasing efforts to recruit and retain minority teachers and expand reentry programs, or programs and resources for individuals who’ve been released from prison.

Jackson, 47, said he’s mostly a stay-at-home dad who works part time as a bouncer at Arch Street Tavern in Hartford.

He’s a graduate of Bloomfield High School and attended the University of Connecticut for several years studying communications before leaving school to work as a television journalist.

Though a political action committee has endorsed him, Jackson said he hasn’t accepted any campaign contributions and is amazed at how much money gets thrown around during an election.

To get the word out about his candidacy, Jackson said he’s using word of mouth and social media.

Jackson said his campaign is different than most candidates because he’s not running on any particular platform — although he’s against tolls. He simply wants to represent people and help them.

What he has a problem with is the premise of tolls being implemented in Connecticut.

As to what ideas Jackson might have on how the state can generate revenue without tolls, he won’t say.

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