State Senator Andrew Roraback (R), a political force in northwest Connecticut for 18 years, has joined the hunt to fill Congressman Chris Murphy’s seat in 2012. Murphy’s bold move to vacate his congressional seat to run for the U.S. Senate in 2012 has created a rare open seat. With Roraback’s announcement today outside Goshen Town Hall there are now five Republicans and four Democrats vying for the 5th Congressional District. For the past eleven years Roraback has been State Senator in the 30th District, and he will now square off against Justin Bernier, Lisa Wilson-Foley, Mark Greenberg and Mike Clark for the GOP nomination. The four Democrats running are Connecticut Speaker of the House Chris Donovan, Elizabeth Esty, Dan Roberti and Mike Williams.  Photographs by John Murray

Roraback described himself as a practical “Yankee” Republican who will use common sense and keep spending in check. Roraback’s speech was written out in long-hand, on a legal pad, and was well received by the approximately 75 people who attended his announcement.

Roraback is married to Kara Dowling and has one son, Andrew Kevin. Since beginning his service in the General Assembly on January 4, 1995, Senator Roraback has cast 7,886 votes and has been present for every vote taken in his legislative sessions. Senator Roraback is the only member of the 187 member General Assembly who can claim this record.

Torrington Mayor Ryan Bingham, who was elected shortly after graduating from Marist College, secured a Roraback lawn sign at the announcement.

Former Torrington Mayor Dee Donne was on hand to support Roraback’s announcement.

Senator Roraback attended public schools in Torrington and Litchfield. He went to the Hotchkiss School for high school. He earned his Bachelor of Arts Degree, Cum Laude, from Yale University in 1983 and his Juris Doctor from the University of Virginia Law School in 1987. While his education is impeccable, Roraback’s biggest challenge will be in fund raising. He said he has never asked anyone to donate to any of his previous nine campaigns, and now he faces the daunting task of raising several million dollars needed to wage a successful congressional campaign.