Will Haskell, who announced his State Senate candidacy during his senior year of college, ran on a platform of restoring tolls to highways, paid family leave and tougher gun control laws.
On Tuesday, Nov. 6, the 22-year-old Haskell of Westport toppled Toni Boucher of Wilton, a Republican who has served in the state legislature since 1997 including the 26th Senate District — nearly as long as Haskell has been alive.
Haskell is a graduate of Staples High School and Georgetown University. For more background about Haskell, read an earlier Daily Voice profile of him by clicking here.
Democrats including Haskell made their first state legislative gains in 10 years, smashing an 18-18 tie in the state Senate.
As of Thursday, Nov. 8, Democrats had won 20 of the state Senate's 36 seats, and were leading in four other races. Republicans had won 11 seats and led in a 12th race. Recounts are expected.
Before running for office, Haskell worked as an intern for the Democratic National Committee in Washington, D.C., and for the Democratic campaigns of U.S. Rep. Jim Himes, U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Himes, Murphy, U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal and former president Barack Obama all endorsed Haskell this fall.
Regarding gun control, Haskell told the Hartford Courant that you don’t need 22 years of experience to know kids need to feel safe in school.
Haskell said former President Obama’s farewell speech inspired him to run for public office.
"If you’re disappointed by your elected officials, grab a clipboard, get some signatures and run for office yourself," Obama said.
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