One day after Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen announced he would not seek a third term in office, state Rep. William Tong and former state Rep. John Shaban announced plans to explore a run for the post.
Tong, a Democrat, filed papers with the State Elections Enforcement Commission to form an exploratory committee to replace Jepsen, while Shaban, a Republican, said he planned to create a candidate committee.
Last month Tong, whose district includes parts of Stamford and Darien, was elected to his sixth term in the legislature, where he is co-chairman of the Judiciary Committee. He also ran unsuccessfully for U.S. Senator in 2012 and for Stamford mayor in 2013.
Touting his fights to pass laws involving gun trafficking, marriage equality and transgender rights, among other subjects, Tong said, “We need an attorney general who will continue the legacies of (fellow Democrats) George Jepsen and Dick Blumenthal, standing up to powerful special interests and fighting for those who need an advocate.”
If elected, Tong would become the first Asian-American constitutional officer in Connecticut’s history.
Shaban served in the state House from 2011 to 2017, representing Easton, Weston and part of Redding. He did not seek re-election last year in order to challenge incumbent Jim Himes for his seat in the U.S. House of Representatives; Himes won re-election. Shaban also mounted a campaign for the seat in 2014, but withdrew before the nominating convention.
“Connecticut’s economy continues to underperform, starving our citizens of the promise and prosperity they deserve,” Shaban said. “The attorney general can help by easing barriers to success for businesses and individuals. My time in the legislature, coupled with my decades of experience practicing commercial law, will enable me to help a new administration correct our course.”