A New London state representative will be among the Connecticut delegation heading to the Democratic National Convention next week.
Ernest Hewett will visit Charlotte, N.C. for the event, which runs Tuesday through Thursday. Hewett said he grew up in North Carolina and expects that he’ll reunite with several people he has met during his involvement with the National Black Caucus of State Legislators.
“I think I’ll be right at home,” he said.
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Though Hewett has been part of state government since he was first elected to the Connecticut General Assembly in 2004, he was excited at the chance to take part in the national process for selecting a presidential candidate. He said he has been a strong supporter of President Barack Obama and is looking forward to contributing to his re-nomination.
“From what I’ve seen, the man is serious about the United States of America and putting people back to work,” said Hewett. “Don’t be so quick to give up on this man. This man was confronted by a lot of things when he first took office.”
Hewett moved to New London in 1974 and worked at as a welder for 20 years before he was laid off. Prior to his time in state government, he served three terms in the City Council and was sworn in as the council’s ceremonial mayor in 1999.
Hewett said he believes that people will often take after their parent’s political beliefs, but came to realize that the Democratic Party reflects his personal opinions.
“My philosophy is when you fall down, you need the help to get back up,” he said, “and that’s what I do as a Democrat.”
Hewett said he considered the chance to be a convention delegate a “once in a lifetime opportunity.” He also encouraged people to register to vote and take part in the upcoming election.
“You can register and talk a good game and say, ‘I’m registered to vote, I’m going to vote in this election,’” he said. “But if you don’t take that critical step and leave your house, leave your job, and go to the polls, it means nothing.”