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Cicilline Supported Business Merger After Receiving Campaign Contribution

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

 

The majority of Democratic legislators that signed on to a letter to the FCC and Justice Department supporting the merger between AT&T and T-Mobile received campaign donations directly from AT&T, including Freshman Congressman David Cicilline.

66 of the 72 lawmakers that praised the meger were on the receiving end of $500k in contributions from AT&T, with many officials receiving $10,000 or more. While initial reports did not list the amount Cicilline received, the Congressman’s Communications Director Jessica Kershaw confirmed that it was $1,000.

Not Paid To Support Merger

Kershaw firmly stated that Congressman Cicilline’s support of the merger had nothing to do with the contribution from AT&T.

“In no way were we paid to support the merger,” Kershaw said.

Kershaw said Cicilline’s support stems from his belief that it will help create jobs in Rhode Island. Kershaw said Cicilline’s office also heard from constituents that supported the merger.

Currently AT&T employs about 200 people in the state and that number is likely to rise, she said. In 2008, the company paid $20.7 million in state and local taxes in Rhode Island and it spent over $84 million in goods and services from state suppliers in 2009, according to Kershaw.

She also noted that the merger was supported by various labor organizations as well as the NAACP and the Sierra Club.

Get Corporate Money Out Of Politics

While no one has accused Cicilline of any wrongdoing, some local leaders say this is just the latest example of why corporate money should be removed from campaigns.

“This is another example of why we need to get corporate money out of politics, so the motives of our elected officials cannot be questioned because of who is funding their elections,” John Marion, Executive Director of Common Cause Rhode Island, said.

Former State Rep. and Congressional Candidate David Segal agreed with Marion. He said now is the time to publicly fund elections.

“There are plenty of people and organizations on both sides of the merger debate, but taking money from one of the interested parties certainly calls into question the recipients' motives,” Segal said. “That's why voters should reward candidates who don't take corporate money, and it's why we so desperately need public funding of elections.”

Cicilline Needs The Money

Congressman Jame Langevin also receieved $8,000 in contributions from AT&T, but local critics mostly directed their attention at Cicilline, the first-term Representative.

Michael Napolitano, a spokesman for John Loughlin, who is currently serving in Iraq, said Cicilline is desperate for campaign cash.

“No surprise here with David Cicilline,” Napolitano said. “He needs the money to pay for all of those macaroni and meatball diners he will buy for senior citizens while he is yet again scaring the hell out of them by misinforming them about their benefits being taken away if Republicans are elected. I don't think he will be getting many campaign donations from the citizens of Providence so he needs all the money he can get.”

Cicilline raised about $124,000 in the first quarter of 2011. The second quarter ends Thursday, but he won’t have to report his fundraising numbers until the middle of July.

Supports Campaign Finance Reform

During his campaign last fall, Cicilline was criticized by his opponents for not signing on to a campaign finance reform pledge from MoveOn.org. He wound up joining his fellow candidates and supporting the pledge days later.

“If we are going to fix what’s broken in Washington, we first need to break the link between money and politics, and the challenges we face as a nation are too great for half-measures or partial reform,” Cicilline said at the time. “I am proud to support a stronger, amended version of MoveOn.org’s pledge to commit to reform our campaign finance system.”

 

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Comments:

Buc Kner

CALLING CHARLES DRAGO..CHARLES??
you can bat first..don't bunt because you own shares

Nick Patriarca

not our david ? just ask him . oh , never mind .

John McGrath

He's still the darling of a certain East Side crowd. Ugh! To them David is a "good person," and therefore he can perform no bad actions that "count." He was sneaky and corrupt but only ideology counts with some people.

Lance Chappell

I wouldn't trust this guy with anything. I like the comment on the mugshot - he just may end up facing that.
East Side crowd are clueless if they think this guy is wonderful. They must enjoy potholes and trash in the streets. Don't think Davey boy is going to do anything spectacular in Congress - he will just go with the crowd and grab any publicity he can for a buck. Such an empty suit.

Phil Lagoy

@ John and Lance. As an Eastsider I can tell you his support while once high over there is falling very fast. Most same have the same political beliefs he does, but they are also a highly educated group that does not like to be lied too.

guy smily

HIS political beliefs are that he is only out for himself and will say what he believes his constituents want to hear. He lied to all of your parents and grandparents last campaign about social security. Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me!

Brian Buongiovanni

Think it might be time for a real leader in District 1? I do.
http://www.dohertyforcongress.com/

Michael Gardiner

Is it my dsplay, or is that picture of John Loughlin a little on the dark side?

jack flash

Sorry Brian, but Rhode Island already has a real leader for District 1, and he is a exceptional speaker and debater. In addition, he has served as a REPUBLICAN in the legislature and is an Iraq serving his country. His name is John Loughlin. I find your comment at this end of the story to be an infantile tactic and you should be ashamed as the 2nd Vice Chair of the Republican Party to post it.

Michael Gardiner

Lame Brian. No matter who a Republican prefers right now, that was a foul.

Scott Dickerson

__________________________________

I was so impressed with John Loughlin last time he ran I am now volunteering myself and my family to assist in his campaign. He is a great American and I am looking forward to the day he debates Cicilline and calls him on the carpet for all of the lies he said to the senior citizens and the the people of Providence. The vets are with you John!

edith pilkingoton

Langevin received $8500 from AT&T. Why isn't his support mentioned in the article? Why isn't net neutrality, a very controversial issue very involved with the AT&T merger, mentioned? Why isn't what David Segal has written about what is at stake regarding net neutrality in the Huffington Post and elsewhere drawn from in relation to this latest revelation? He is very knowledgeable about all these things. There has also been a lot of influence peddling by AT&T among minority groups like the NAACP, GLAAD, Latino organizations, etc. for support for AT&T's position on net neutrality. Why is that not also mentioned? A lot has been written about that recently.

Todd B

Brian, has Doherty figured out where he stands on Obamacare yet? Before I'd go calling Doherty a "leader", it would be nice to know where he wants to lead me. Amazing how people can support a candidate that refuses to tell voters where he stands on the issues...

Nelson R

http://www.boston.com/Boston/politicalintelligence/2011/06/barrios-quits-head-glaad/Y9GN4w0UkLFYNmQtkvV8PL/index.html?p1=Local_Links

Charles Drago

___________________________

The poseur John Loughlin -- or Michelle Bachmann without the intellectual rigor -- will see the inside of the Capital only if he pays to take the tour.

Loughlin does have a place in the Federal government, however: as a Border Patrol guard.

Meanwhile, he should be sent to Pakistan to root out the three remaining terrorists there. They do live in caves, don't they?

And Neanderthals like Loughlin were/are cave dwellers ...

guy smily

_______________________________________-
Drago I find your comments about John Loughlin to be completely out of line and extremely mean spirited. Our service men and women are fighting so that someone like you has the gift of free speech. I wonder how someone like you can look in the mirror. But then again most of your comments are below the belt no matter what the subject. I am sure that you will come back with some snappy come-back and go on living your life while others make it possible for you to.

Charles Drago

_______________________________

The Ignorati continue to make it possible -- not to mention necessary -- for me to make blogging part of my life.

Thanks a lot!

Charles Drago

________________________________

And at the next Ignorati meeting you might want to inform your fellow members that free speech is neither a "gift" nor a privilege.

It is a right.

As in the Bill of Rights, part of the Constitution that you and your ilk neither understand nor care to defend.

Winston Smith

Excuse me Charles,
Why are you so hostile?
"As in the Bill of Rights, part of the Constitution that you and your ilk neither understand nor care to defend. "
Do you know where John is right now? Can we assume that you are a Cicillini supporter?
If you are, your comments are a weeee bit odd.

Charles Drago

______________________

"Winston Smith,"

Are you kidding me?

If your goal is to get me on record regarding John Loughlin once again ... congratulations!

I know where John Loughlin is now. He's in Iraq, sitting at a desk most likely, playing the odds that he can escape his desk job without injury and return to Rhode Island to play the "patriot/warrior" card.

God protect him and all his comrades on all sides.

But don't expect thinking people to buy into his absurd-on-its-face "patriot/warrior" hype. John Loughlin has rolled the dice by taking a desk job in the safest theater in the Middle East. It's pure politics. Shame on him.

As for me being a "Cicilline supporter" ... Well, that's like calling Crazy Horse a Custerphile.




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