GOP candidate Joe Bentivegna picks up town committee endorsement

The Easton Republican Town Committee has endorsed Dr. Joseph Bentivegna for Congress in the Fourth District race.

Bentivegna, an ophthalmologist (or eye surgeon) from Fairfield, is one of three Republicans seeking the Republican nomination to challenge Democratic incumbent Jim Himes this fall.

The others are former state Sen. Dan Debicella of Shelton, who is favored to win the party endorsement at the mid-May convention, and Carl Higbie of Greenwich, a former Navy SEAL.

Growing the party

Bentivegna said the endorsement by the Easton RTC gives him some momentum in the race.

“They recognize that only a candidate who can grow our party and articulate conservative principles in a compassionate and concise manner will be able to beat Jim Himes this fall,” Bentivegna said. “That’s the candidate I am, and that’s why I’m running.”

The Fourth Congressional District includes most of Fairfield County, including much of Shelton. Himes, a Greenwich resident, was first elected to Congress in 2008 and plans to seek re-election.

Preparing for a primary

According to a press release from his campaign, Bentivegna has been garnering increased media attention, appearing recently on two Sunday TV news-interview shows, WFSB’s “Face the State” (CBS/Channel 3) and WTIC’s “The Real Story” (Fox/Channel 61).

“Comfortable speaking on every issue, [Bentivegna] has been capturing the imagination of the residents of the Connecticut’s Fourth District,” the campaign release claimed. “With over $100,000 in the bank, he has a well-financed campaign to carry his message to the primary voters this summer.”

Worried about the middle class

Bentivegna said his campaign is focusing on what he calls “the massacre of the middle class ... Financial interests, high taxes and government regulation are destroying the American Dream — especially in Fairfield County, where there is little job growth or influx of young families.”

According to campaign material, Bentivegna “is in a unique position to lead Republican outreach to the cities in the district. [His] campaign will be launching registration drives in the major cities this summer to bring new voters into the Republican Party.”

He said his message can appeal to many different people across the district, noting he speaks both Haitian Creole and Spanish in addition to English. He has established an eye surgery clinic in Haiti.

On the campaign trail, Bentivegna is emphasizing the issues of reforming healthcare, fixing cities and revitalizing the economy. Learn more about his candidacy at