Meet the Candidates & Get Involved!

Elections are upon us and we’re ready to work!
Come meet our progressive candidates for local office at our next RiseUpMystic meeting. Local candidates need your help to secure votes in our local elections – and Tuesday, Nov 5th will be here soon! Here’s your chance to get involved at the local level. Please share this event on facebook, and bring a friend if you can!

Wednesday, October 9th, 7 PM
at the
Groton Public Library

Special guests will include: Groton candidates Joe Zeppieri, Juan Melendez, Portia Bordelon, Lian Obrey, Patrice Granatosky, Rachael Franco, Juliette Parker, Aundré Bumgardner. Stonington candidates Danielle Cheseborough, June Strunk, and Bob Statchen

RiseUpMystic Summer Picnic!

When: Saturday, July 27th – 12 PM to 3 PM
Where: 7 Island Rd, Stonington, CT

  • Bring a dish to share! We’ll provide the burgers and drinks
  • Offstreet parking is available
  • Play horseshoes, bocce ball, and ladder toss!

We need volunteers! Can you help? Contact Jason Hine 203-733-7573

️️️ Invite your friends, too! Like and share our event on Facebook  ️️️

Special thanks to Gene Pfeifer for hosting this event in his beautiful backyard!

Oil Spills: Some Big Reasons to Move Away From Oil

By Roger James Kuhns

Army General Russel Honoré retired in 2008 as a three-star general. He is known as the “Category Five General” because he took charge of the 2005 Joint Katrina Task Force.  He said, in a PBS interview (5-30-2019) his experiences radicalized him because when he came home to Louisiana he found catastrophes. Russel Honoré saw how the petrochemical plants had poisoned the state, how the coastline was disappearing from bad business practices and climate change, and how the air was some of the most polluted in America. The southern parishes of Louisiana are known as “Cancer Alley”. There are over 1700 oil and gas and petrochemical companies operating in Louisiana and the people and land have been severely impacted.  This affects us in Connecticut because we get some of our oil and gas from Louisiana.

There are hundreds to thousands of oil spills across America and its waters every year.  Over 405 million gallons of oil were spilled between 1989 – the year of the Exxon Valdez tanker disaster in Alaska (32 million gallons of crude) and last year, 2018. This includes the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010 (193 million gallons of crude) (DOT, EPA, USGS).  There were many spills in Connecticut in 2018, for example in January, four thousand gallons of oil spilled into the Naugatuck River in Waterbury, 400 gallons were spilled in Groton in July, and 700 gallons leaked from a tank in Bridgeport.  This is a nationwide problem.

MAP:   This map, from, shows some of the 2018 oil spills.

So Russel Honoré founded his “Green Army” to fight bad practices, poor safety, environmental disasters, and health impacts to people in Louisiana.  He was featured on a PBS news hour story, a 2016 TED talk, and many news stories.  We need a lot of Russel Honorés across America, and there are many.  Community Actions like this are critical.  It is through such actions we can keep fracking fluids and practices out of Connecticut, demand more renewable energy, and increase the use of electric cars.

Senator Somers Votes Against Early Voting Amendment

Last week, the CT House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly in favor of a bill that would have allowed an early voting amendment to be put on the 2020 ballot. RiseUpMystic was very proud that Representatives Christine Conley, Joe de la Cruz, and Kate Rotella fought for and supported this bipartisan, democratic initiative.

Unfortunately, the bill failed to receive the necessary number of votes in the Senate. Our own Senator, Heather Somers, was among those conservatives who voted against the bill.

Many of us find ourselves wondering why Senator Somers would vote against a bill that would have made voting more accessible. We wonder what she has against expanding voting rights to people who wish to be engaged as citizens.

RiseUpMystic February Meeting

Wednesday, Feb 6th – 7 PM at the Groton Public Library

Our new Lt. Governor Susan Bysiewicz and State Reps Chris Conley and Joe de la Cruz join us for our legislative outlook meeting this Wednesday. Come hear what’s at stake this legislative session and have your voice heard!

New London City Councilor Anthony Nolan will also join us. He will update us on his campaign and the 39th District special election.

Writer’s Workshop to Fight Climate Change

Hello and happy new year! Here’s to another year of progress, productivity, and making our voices heard. 

We are jump-starting our productive year with a Writer’s Workshop to Fight Climate Change one week from today, on Monday, January 14th, 2019 at 7pm at Groton Public Library. 

At this family-friendly workshop event, we will have several stations set up (including a kids’ activity table!) where people of all writing abilities can write letters to local newspapers, post on social media, and contact elected officials.

Plenty of friendly, informed RUM volunteers will be available to help and Judy Westwood’s amazing cookies will be on hand for anyone who needs a snack. 

So, bring your laptop. Bring the kids. Bring a coffee. We’ve got work to do! See you next Monday!


Sample Ballots for Our Region

Find your town below (alphabetical by town):

East Lyme





New London

North Stonington









An explanation of the CT statewide ballot questions on November 6th

  • The first question will ask voters if the state should constitutionalize a “lockbox” to ensure transportation revenues are spent only on transportation-related initiatives and debts. If passed, the state legislature would be prohibited from using those funds for nontransportation purposes.
  • The second will ask voters whether the constitution should require additional reviews and public hearings prior to the sale or transfer of state-owned land, such as state parks, state forests and conservation areas.



If so, you may drive up to the curb at the voting place and ask one of the volunteers holding signs to go in and tell the poll officials that someone has requested curbside voting. Two poll-workers of opposite parties will come outside to assist you. Have your identification ready and they will allow you to vote privately in your car in the presence of the election officials. Click here for more information for voters with disabilities.


Contributed by RiseUpMystic Member Pam

If you attended the debate between Bob Statchen and Heather Somers on Oct 17th, you heard some BOLD CLAIMS from Republican incumbent State Senator Heather Somers.


Here we present THE FACTS so that you can stay informed on the issues and make your own decision.



Somers voted against the BUMP STOCK ban in CT 2018, despite her claims of being in favor of a previous version of the BUMP STOCK bill. Heather Somers’ consistent opposition to common sense gun legislation has earned her an NRA rating of A- in 2014 and 2016.
Source: THE WASHINGTON POST: Go to the bottom of the article and enter her name.

Source: FOX 61, includes a video of a BUMP STOCK in use.



Heather Somers claims that tolls would cost drivers thirty-two cents per mile for Connecticut residents and would cost a commuter driving from Griswold to Electric Boat $3,400 a year. Our State Transportation Department refutes that claim, calculating that E-Z Pass commuters will pay less than four cents per mile, not thirty-two.



Heather Somers asserts that she wanted to protect the Citizens’ Election Program. NOT TRUE: Somers proposed legislation to eliminate the Citizens’ Election Program, and would have empowered special interest and lobbyist money instead of ensuring a level, inexpensive, playing field.
Source: THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY_1.18.2017 Proposed S.B. No. 208

If you missed the debate, you can watch it in its entirety on YouTube.

No RUM Debate in the 40th District Race

An update on our invitation for a 40th District (Groton/Ledyard) debate.

RiseUpMystic attempted to host a debate between Representative Christine Conley and her challenger, John Scott. We offered to secure a venue, locate a neutral moderator, and publicize the event.

While members of RiseUpMystic do support progressive candidates, we also believe that debates are different than campaigns and that voters deserve the opportunity to be well-informed about all candidates. At a debate, the campaigning stops and it is an opportunity to hear from both candidates without bias.

Unfortunately, Mr. Scott issued a number of conditions, including that conservative radio host Lee Elci serve as one of the moderators. We felt this was not at all in the spirit of debate. We regret that Mr. Scott did not respond to our follow-up suggestion that we find a fair and impartial moderator.

However, we would like to thank Representative Conley for accepting the terms and agreeing to the debate. We appreciate all she has done, and continues to do, for her constituents.



Take action & reach out to a friend: write a postcard!

Hey everybody!

We had a great turnout for our first two Saturday morning canvassing efforts. First-time and seasoned canvassers alike reported connecting with neighbors, making new friends, and informing genuinely curious people about candidates who want to bring their progressive values to the state congress.

If you missed the first two events and want to get in on the fun, you have plenty of time! Check out our event calendar for more info.

Can’t commit a weekend morning to canvassing? Make a difference in just a few minutes by writing a postcard to someone you know in the 18th Senate District in CT to remind them to support progressive values with a vote for Bob Statchen on Nov. 6th, 2018.

Here’s a list of towns in the 18th district — any resident of these towns can vote for our pal Bob on November 6th:

  • Griswold
  • Groton
  • North Stonington
  • Plainfield
  • Preston
  • Sterling
  • Stonington
  • Voluntown

We are also looking for volunteers to write letters to the editor of their favorite local paper in support of Bob Statchen, especially after his debate against Republican Heather Somers at Fitch High School at 7pm Wednesday night.

You can help us make a difference in November. We are so thankful for this community and for all that you do!