Ryan retains seat in 139th District House race
State Rep. Kevin Ryan, D-Montville, fended off Republican challenger Mark Adams on Tuesday to secure his 16th term in office. Ryan, 70, of Montville was elected to office in 1993.
Ryan, 70, of Montville, outpolled Adams by 389, according to the Secretary of the State’s office. Unofficial results show Ryan winning with 4,001 votes over Adams’ 3,612 votes.
The district was reconfigured this year and covers parts of Montville, Norwich and Ledyard.
Ryan, who opted to track the results of Tuesday’s election from the quiet of his home in Montville, said the race was closer than expected and one of the tightest vote margins he’s experienced in recent memory.
Ryan said he sensed that voters this year were blaming officials in office for “economic factors we couldn’t influence.”
“We’ve done what we could to help our families,” he said.
Ryan said he planned an outreach effort and a renewed effort to engage with voters in the district.
Adams, 49, of Norwich, had joined with fellow Republicans at Prime Restaurant in Norwich on Tuesday, at at one point in the evening was down by 63 votes.
Adams said he was perplexed that voters returned Ryan to office. He said representation in the district has become stagnant and he had hoped his message had gotten through. Adams had focused on public safety and economic issues, was critical of the Police Accountability Act and against the state’s move to allow early voting.
“I put myself out there,” Adams said.
It was Adams’ first run at a state office. He previously ran for a seat on the Norwich City Council and lost by 10 votes.