HARTFORD -- The building at the corner of Main Street and Charter Oak Avenue in Hartford is a squat, brick affair, with a drive-in basement for the cars of the lobbyists, law firms and campaign committees that rent these dim-lit offices. Up on the third floor, Dan Malloy, Arielle Reich and Roy Occhiogrosso come to the blue-walled office of Nancy DiNardo, the chairwoman of the Connecticut Democratic Party.
DiNardo is a low-key chief, friendly and deferential to the Democratic governor and the aides who delivered him at long last. A plastic jug of Twizzlers sits on her desk, a staple food of long strategy sessions and conference calls. A blue "Connecticut" placard leans against the wall next to her desk, a souvenir from the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver. A photo of Bill Clinton addressing his own nominating convention looks down from one wall, Obama-Biden posters from another.