Edward Miner "Ned" Lamont, Jr. (born January 3, 1954) is an American businessman and politician. In 2006 he defeated incumbent Senator Joe Lieberman, for Connecticut's Senatorial Democratic nomination (52 percent vs. 48 percent), who instead opted to run as a candidate under his Connecticut for Lieberman Party. In the general election Lamont finished second with 39 percent to Lieberman's 49 percent and Republican Alan Schlesinger's 9 percent. In 2010 he ran for the Democratic nomination for Governor of Connecticut, but lost to Dan Malloy, the eventual winner of the election.
Lamont is founder of Campus Televideo, which provides video and data services to U.S. college campuses. The company was sold in 2015. Lamont is currently chairman of Lamont Digital Systems, an early investor in Watch Up and Stringr, two new media companies. He is currently a faculty member and Chair of the Arts and Sciences Public Policy Committee at Central Connecticut State University, where he was named by the Board of Trustees as Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Philosophy.
Lamont was born on January 3, 1954, in Washington, D.C. to Camille Helene (née Buzby) and Edward Miner Lamont, and is the great-grandson of former J. P. Morgan & Co. chairman Thomas W. Lamont and grand-nephew of Corliss Lamont. His mother was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. His father, an economist, worked on the Marshall Plan and later served in Department of Housing and Urban Development during the Nixon administration. Lamont attended Phillips Exeter Academy, where he served as president of the student newspaper, The Exonian. After graduating Phillips Exeter in 1972, Lamont earned a Bachelor of Arts from Harvard College in 1976 and an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management in 1980.
In 1977 Lamont was editor for The Black River Tribune, a small newspaper in Ludlow, Vermont. After receiving his M.B.A. from Yale, Lamont entered the cable television industry, managing the start-up of Cablevision's operation in Fairfield County, Connecticut. In 1984 he founded his own cable television company, Campus Televideo, which provides satellite and telecommunication services, including foreign language and distance learning programs to over 250 colleges and universities. Campus Televideo was acquired by Austin, Texas-based Apogee on September 3, 2015.
Before running for the United States Senate, Lamont was elected and served as a selectman in the town of Greenwich, Connecticut for one term. Lamont also served for three terms on the town finance board and chaired the state investment advisory council, which oversees the investment of the state pension funds. During his term as chair, the outperformance of pension funds reduced the unfunded liability and put funds on a stronger footing.
On July 6, Lamont faced off against Lieberman in a 51-minute televised debate which covered issues such as the Iraq War, energy policy, and immigration. Lieberman argued that he was being subjected to a "litmus test" on the war, insisted that he was a "bread and butter Democrat", and on a number of occasions asked, "who is Ned Lamont?" During the debate Lieberman asked Lamont if he would disclose his income tax returns, which he afterwards did.
Lamont focused on Lieberman's supportive relationship with Republicans, telling him "if you won't challenge President Bush and his failed agenda, I will." He criticized Lieberman's vote for the Energy Policy Act of 2005, which Lamont dubbed the "Bush/Cheney/Lieberman energy bill." In response to Lamont's assertion that he supported Republican policies, Lieberman stated that he had voted with the Democratic caucus in the Senate 90 percent of the time. Lamont argued that the then three-term incumbent lacked the courage to challenge the Bush administration's handling of the Iraq War.
On July 30, The Sunday Times reported that former President Bill Clinton was believed to have warned Lieberman not to run as an independent if he lost the primary to Lamont. Throughout the election, Lamont significantly funded his own campaign, with donations exceeding $12.7 million, as he had pledged not to accept money from lobbyists.
Lamont won the primary with 51.79 percent of the vote as opposed to Lieberman's 48.21 percent; it was the only Senate race in 2006 where an incumbent lost re-nomination. In his concession speech, Lieberman announced that he would stand by his prior statements that he'd run as an independent if he lost the Democratic primary. Lieberman won the general election with approximately 50 percent of the vote; exit polls showed that Lieberman won the vote of 33 percent of Democrats, 54 percent of independents, and 70 percent of Republicans.
Lamont was one of the key supporters in Connecticut for the Chris Dodd presidential campaign. After Dodd dropped out of the race, Lamont became the Connecticut campaign co-chair for Barack Obama's presidential campaign. Lamont was credited with attracting the types of voters he brought to Obama's successful campaign in the Connecticut Democratic primary. In March 2008, Lamont was elected as a Congressional district-level delegate from Connecticut to the 2008 Democratic National Convention, pledged to Barack Obama.
Research 2000 polls commissioned by the blog Daily Kos in 2007 and 2008 found that Lamont would win a Senate rematch with Joe Lieberman by growing margins. In February 2009 Lamont stated that he was not considering another campaign for Senate.
On November 4, 2009, Lamont reported that he would create an exploratory committee for the race for Governor of Connecticut in 2010, and on February 17, 2010, he officially announced his candidacy. On May 22, 2010, he was defeated for the Democratic nomination by former Stamford mayor Dan Malloy. Lamont received 582 votes (32 percent) to Malloy's 1,232 votes (68 percent). Since Lamont won more than fifteen percent of the vote, he appeared on the primary ballot on August 10, 2010. He lost the primary election to Malloy, who received 57.6 percent of the vote to Lamont's 42.4 percent.
After the election, Lamont entered academia. He served as a teaching fellow at the Harvard Institute of Politics, Yale School of Management and is currently an adjunct faculty member and Chair of the Arts and Sciences Public Policy Committee at Central Connecticut State University, where he was named by the Board of Trustees as Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Philosophy.
Lamont serves on the Board of Directors for Mercy Corps, the Norman Rockwell Museum and YALE School of Management. He is also on the board of Foreign Policy Leadership Council for the Brookings Institution.
In 1983 Ned Lamont married Ann Huntress. They have three children. Ann is a venture capitalist, serving as a managing partner at Oak Investment HC-FT; in 2007 she was named number 50 in Forbes' Midas List.
|Party political offices|
|Democratic Party nominee for United States Senator from Connecticut