Hedge fund manager seeks Dem nod for governor

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GREENWICH -

A former Wall Street executive from Greenwich is generating a buzz around her quest to succeed Gov. Dannel Malloy, but she may have trouble connecting with Democrats.

Dita Bhargava, a former hedge fund manager is running as an outsider -- and a Democrat.

She says she's a consensus builder -- the type of person she says she thinks Hartford needs desperately right now. The state has gone without a budget for 103 days because lawmakers and Gov. Malloy can't reach an agreement.

"I think part of leadership is making sure you develop those relationships early with your entire legislature, with the business community, with everyone who is a stakeholder -- because we're all on the same page," she says.

This is a crowded field for governor, but Bhargava is raising money fast. Her latest campaign report shows she raised $53,000 in less than three weeks.

One of her ideas is to offer student loan forgiveness to college students who stay in Connecticut for five years after graduation -- a move that she says would grow the tax base. She also wants to invest more in cities like Bridgeport.

"I do think that there's the potential for her to win the Democratic nomination," says Gary Rose, a political analyst at Sacred Heart University. "I think she has the potential of forging a coalition within the Democratic party. I'm not sure if she's electable in the general election."

The Republican side also has a Greenwich hedge fund manager -- David Stemerman, who is spending almost $2 million of his own money.

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