Last week in front of a standing room only crowd at the Bristol Historical Society, Ellen Zoppo-Sassu announced her candidacy for mayor. If nominated and elected, she will be the first mayor in the long history of Bristol to have a hyphenated last name.
One supporter was very encouraged. “We hyphenates have waited a long time for someone who speaks for us. Hopefully, this will lead to the understanding of the hyphenate community and what we’ve been through,” said Mary Astor-Winfield-Jones-Landry-Higgenbocker as she shepherded her twenty-five children through the gathering.
Standing next to a bust of city founder and soul sensation Johnny Bristol, Mrs. Zoppo-Sassu said, “As a graduate of Providence College, and the University of Connecticut, and St.Paul Catholic High School, and… I could go on and on, but let’s face it – this is happening.”
The candidacy sets up a rematch with Ken Cockayne, who defeated her in 2015 by only 128 votes, or 904 in dog years.
Exit polls in 2015 attributed her loss to voters not relating to her being left-handed. The same was found for voters who could not find the exit. Since then, Bristol has seen an influx of left-handed refugees that Democrats hope will boost turnout for her, as long as they do not blow themselves up.
Still the campaign hinted they will tone down her lack of traditional limb dominance. She is expected to be photographed using her right hand and saying right-handed things, like “I love using scissors.”
In January, Mayor Cockayne announced he was seeking a third term. Reading from prepared notes, he said, “I would be proud to represent Bristol for another time, I mean “term”, as your… Page One, mayor, continued. It would be my great honor to work hard for the citizens of this city. Put down notes, look up, exhale. Page Two.”
The mayor presents a formidable challenge, given his popularity, established record and his ability to take criticism with calmness and grace. Some though see his penchant for wearing ties with Windsor knots as alienating the majority of voters who polling suggests, prefer something more elaborate like a Trinity or Eldredge knot. Still, his ties sit well with highly influential heads of Windsor knot lobby groups and his sweaters are simply boffo among the Chippens Hill crowd.