by Jennifer Swift
Oct 28, 2013
04:22 PMConnecticut Politics
Updated: Democrats Call Mark Boughton a 'Modern Day Marie Antoinette' After Heat Tweets
Additional information was posted to this story Tuesday.
As a former history teacher, Mark Boughton has some issues with Connecticut Democrats comparing him to Marie Antoinette.
The Danbury mayor, a Republican who's exploring a run for governor, had engaged in a Twitter back-and-forth with Danbury High School students who said they were cold. When Boughton tweeted "No heat till trick or treat," the state Democratic Party sent out a news release comparing the mayor's tweet to the "let them eat cake" line often attributed to the French queen.
"Mayor Mark Boughton has established himself as the modern day Marie Antoinette candidate in the race for governor," James Hallinan, a spokesman for the Connecticut Democratic Party, said in a statement. "Students without heat pleaded with the Mayor to get the heat turned on so they could concentrate on their studies, but Mayor Mark Boughton essentially said, 'let them eat cake.' The Connecticut Democratic Party has attached an updated head shot of Mayor Mark Boughton for this story."
Reached for comment Monday evening, Boughton couldn’t help but laugh. He first explained that the heat in schools has in fact been on since Oct. 15, but in one classroom there was an issue with a pipe that left the classroom without heat, which the school is trying to fix. He said he sympathized with those students because it was likely cold in that room—but the issue is being fixed, and he often engages on light-hearted conversations on Twitter.
“I always engage in a little back and forth with the kids—whether it’s over school closings, storms, heat—any other issue,” he said. “Apparently Democratic headquarters don’t have a lot to do today.”
Boughton also took issue with the comparison for another reason.
“I think I dress a little bit better than Marie Antoinette," he said.
Democrats took their criticism one step further Tuesday, and had two individuals, dressed in chicken costumes stand outside Danbury City Hall. Their signs read "Students need heat not mean Mayor Mark tweets" and "Boo Mayor Mark! Give the kids heat!"
Boughton had explained previously the heat was turned on weeks ago, except in one classroom where the heat was broken. A student that had tweeted at him Monday sent a follow-up to thank him for turning the heat on Tuesday. According to his own Twitter, Boughton was not at city hall when the chickens stopped by, and was instead reading to a class of 1st graders.