Perhaps you read the October 15th Greenwich Time article written by Frank MacEachern wherein Livvy Floren and Lile Gibbons deny having asked me to run for Lile's soon to be vacated seat in 2010: http://www.greenwichtime.com/news/article/Paulmeno-says-GOP-wanted-her-in-2010-
I read in utter disbelief Livvy Floren and Lile Gibbons’ denial that they had approached me in 2010 to run for Lile’s soon to be vacated State Representative seat. The boldness and lack of veracity is absolutely astonishing! Talk about re-writing history! My husband was with me at the Veteran's celebration during this discussion and I'd mentioned it to others at the club event and later at subsequent places where the event route took us. I have discussed it for years afterwards, having been very proud to have been asked; what great validation for a 40-year career in health and social services from two women whom I respected! At the time they asked me to consider this, I had noted that I could never afford to run a campaign and Lile said I should “leave that worry to them; there were ways to take care of this.” Political novice that I was I didn't know what this meant. Was Citizens Election Financing in place then?
I am a Democrat. Why in the world would I approach the Republicans to run for a vacant seat if, in fact, I had wanted to be considered, as opposed to approaching my own party? In the wise words of our own Judge Judy, if it doesn't make sense it isn't true. In fact I had not been seeking office with either Party. I was as apolitical a person as you would care to meet. Shortly after the Indian Harbor Memorial Day event the Democrats also asked me to run for the soon to be vacant seat but I declined that as well as my husband had been having health issues back in 2010.
The conversation about my being asked to run for Lile's seat with the GOP two years ago was indeed initiated by Livvy, and joined within minutes by Lile. I was not active in any politics beyond having a Party affiliation at that time. I've been a proud member of the League of Women Voters for many years, a distinctly non-partisan group. Lile and Livvy told my husband and I that day that several of "them" had been talking and felt that the issues in the campaign were going to be very heavily health care related and they thought I was one of the most informed people across the state on this matter. I agreed with that perception, but noted that I had no political aspirations. Livvy referenced conversations about my interest in politics but I clarified that I was referring to the RTM, upon which I had twice served already.
I’ve shared this story with many others since 2010, all during a time when I was not running for office nor aspiring to do so, as a source of pride. It was just last week, following a function where we were both panelists, that Livvy said to me that she did not realize I was a Democrat when she approached me about running for Lile’s seat. Why WOULD she have known to which Party I belonged? I never concerned myself with someone's Party affiliation when I worked with them. I had often sought both of them out for involvement with work projects that I was implementing. In fact it took me a period of time discussing their request with them and others with whom I shared this news, to realize that I couldn’t consider their request because we were in different Parties, a realization which I shared with both of them at the celebration that day before we ever left the Club. Lile noted that it might be too late for me to switch Parties but I said I would never do that.
I have tried to be gracious in always noting that Livvy and Lile had no reason to know I was a Democrat when they approached me, except perhaps for my strong support of social justice issues. I was truely honored to have been asked by them. That being said, having the elected officials in your opposing Party tell you that they considered you the best candidate for the position in 2010 is quite a strong endorsement statement for a candidate for that same office in 2012, when the health care issues and the factors riding on them are even greater. I can understand why they might want to distance themselves from this request that they made to me back then, but I think veracity is important. We all need to stand behind what we say. It was not so egregious but merely an offer made based on an honest assessment of an indivdual's expertise. They both know full well that they sought me out at the celebration and asked me to run for the State Representative Seat in 2010 and that the reasons they did so are still valid today.
You may or may not know that the integrity of nurses, which is what I have been for over 40 years, has come out at the top of the list in the views of the public for the last 10 years straight. It is why I almost always use my credentials. The survey is based on a number of rated factors and crosses over many professions. I wonder where politicians have fared on it? http://www.advisory.com/Daily-Briefing/2011/12/14/Nurses-most-trusted-profession We need more people in office who will stand behind what they say and will not re-write history to make it convenient for themselves.
Stephanie Paulmeno, MS, RN, NHA
Candidate: State Representative-District 150