Timothy Herbst’s reputation precedes him on a summer evening’s visit with the Republican Town Committee in Cheshire. In eight years as first selectman of Trumbull, plus one statewide campaign for treasurer, Herbst has been a pugnacious mixer, happy to scrap in person, in the media or via his personal political action committee.
Herbst is on the summer RTC circuit to talk about why his time as a young suburban CEO, shrinking an unfunded pension liability, striking new deals with labor and stabilizing taxes, makes him the Republicans’ best hope to win Connecticut’s open race for governor in 2018. But his elbows are out, even when trying to impress.
“What you see is what you get — proven reformer, Hartford outsider. And I am not afraid of taking on the Hartford insiders,” Herbst tells his audience, a dozen early campaign window shoppers. “And unfortunately, I hate to say it, Hartford insiders are made up of people in both parties, people that have been there for far too long.”