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From the New Haven Register.
Voters Go for Halle in 9th Ward
John Halle, a professor at Yale University, won a seat on the New Haven Board of Alderman.

By Angela Carter, New Haven Register Staff July 11, 2001 

NEW HAVEN — John Halle pulled off an upset in the 9th Ward Tuesday when he became the first member of the Green Party to win a seat on the Board of Aldermen.

Halle, 41, will finish the term of Democrat Gerald Garcia, who resigned to take a job in New York. Many thought Halle didn't stand a chance in a ward dominated by 1,082 registered Democrats to 32 voters classified as other, a category that includes Green Party members.

"This is a very unusual thing," Halle said, shouting over victory party cheers at his home. "I think it might be an indication of things to come."

Halle claimed 202 votes while Democrat Alexander Marathas got 149 and GOP candidate Bill Lattanzi trailed with 133. Democratic Registrar Sharon Ferrucci said the count included absentee ballots.

Marathas and Lattanzi could not be reached for comment.

Halle, an assistant professor in Yale University's Department of Music, said Green Party members were energized by Ralph Nader's presidential campaign and more than 300 people were working at the polls last November.

"We were able to draw on some of those people to win this election," Halle said. "Neighbors in New Haven need their own voice. The view of New Haven is almost like a third-world country. It's a a place to get in and out of as quickly as possible. ?Voters are taking control."

Julio Gonzalez, campaign manager for Mayor John DeStefano Jr., was not pleased with the special election results.

"It demonstrates a lack of leadership in the Democratic Party. Hopefully, it's something that will be ameliorated soon."

DeStefano likely will face a primary challenge in September from state Sen. Martin Looney, D-New Haven.

Ted LeVasseur, campaign manager for Joel Schiavone, DeStefano's Republican opponent, echoed Halle saying residents are calling for change.

"Voters are tired of the machine politics," LeVasseur said. "I think it's obvious that New Haven voters are ready for some extreme changes."

LeVasseur said that even though Lattanzi didn't win, the election outcome still brings encouragement to Schiavone's camp.

But Halle's may also have a message for Republicans.

"More people will be running for aldermen. The Green Party may become the second party alternative in New Haven," Halle said.

Another vacancy in the East Shore's 18th Ward will be filled by Arlene DePino, wife of Chris DePino, the Republican Party's state chairman. GOP Alderman Justin Gargiulo Jr. resigned from his first term because he moved out of the ward. 

©New Haven Register 2001 

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