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Side of the Rhode: Who’s Hot and Who’s Not in RI Politics?

Friday, March 30, 2012

 

Who's Hot

Sheldon Whitehouse -> Sen. Whitehouse still holds a commanding leading over GOP candidate Barry Hinckley in the polls and now he’s getting national attention (and support) for his “Buffett Rule” legislation that would raise taxes on the richest Americans. While it’s far too early to count Hinckley out (Whitehouse still doesn’t even have a campaign manager), the Senator has to be awfully confident he’ll cruise to reelection.

Michael Riley –> Defeating Congressman Langevin will be a monumental task, but kudos to Michael Riley for at least showing he plans to spend money on the race. Riley is already on the radio and while he isn’t getting the same kind of attention Brendan Doherty is getting in the 1st District, his message is probably a bit more coherent at this point.

Gordon Fox -> The House Speaker continues to show a commitment toward making college more affordable for Rhode Islanders. Say what you want about his politics, but it’s nice to hear one of the most powerful politicians in the state say he wants to find a way to help students pay for that nearly 10 percent tuition hike coming at URI and the 4.5 percent bump at RIC this fall.

Ann Clanton -> She’s getting beat up by the far-right members of the Party, but the GOP’s new executive director deserves credit for even showing interest in a Party that faces such an uphill battle in the state. If her detractors spent half as much time doing opposition research on Democrats as they did on her, maybe Rhode Island wouldn’t be a one-Party state.

Peter Baptista & Nick Hemond -> The two former Caprio staffers have launched a political consulting firm that has the opportunity to rise to prominence pretty quickly. The group will likely handle fundraising for Gina Raimondo (the favorite in the 2014 gubernatorial race) and Terry Hassett (a serious contender for Secretary of State).

Susan Lusi -> It sounds like the interim superintendent of schools in Providence is one of the final four contenders to hold the job permanently. As one person close to Providence Schools said recently, “the city would be crazy not to hire her. She’s improved relationships with the unions after the Mayor fired the teachers and bringing in another new face would set everything back a year.”

Johnson & Wales -> Johnson & Wales is still the only nonprofit to step up to help the city of Providence and now it has agreed to pay more to Cranston as well. It’s nice that at least one tax-exempt institution is showing a willingness to support struggling municipalities.

Who's Not

Dominick Ruggerio -> The Senate Majority Leader became the latest embarrassment to the Rhode Island General Assembly with his mid-week DUI. Just imagine how much worse this could have been. Instead, he’ll probably hire the best DUI lawyer he can find to make it all go away. And when election season comes, he’ll still cruise to victory.

M. Teresa Paiva Weed -> Speaking of Ruggerio, did the Senate President really need to rush to his side with a statement of support? The guy was so toasted that he stopped his car in the middle of the road. Is that someone who really deserves any kind of support right now?

Brendan Doherty -> A Democratic operative points out that the GOP Congressional candidate has been sending fundraising e-mails saying March 30 is the fundraising deadline for the 1st quarter. Of course, the deadline is actually March 31. While it’s only a minor mistake, the lack of attention to detail is something that could catch up to the Doherty campaign.

Providence Redistricting -> Between the last-second changes and the purely political decisions, the lack of transparency throughout the city’s redistricting process was downright appalling. While there are certainly arguments to be made in favor of the new map, it’s a shame so many changes came behind closed doors.

Deborah Gist -> WPRI reports that the Education Commissioner had Cicilline-esque approval numbers among public school teachers in a recent poll conducted by the National Education Association. While those numbers are not necessarily a surprise, they have to be disappointing to Gist, who has gone out of her way to be less confrontational with teachers over the last year.

Providence Finances -> The city is draining bank accounts just to make payroll, the nonprofits aren’t budging and retirees aren’t exactly lining up to have their COLAs frozen. With the final quarter of the fiscal year beginning next week, one has to wonder if bankruptcy is the only option for the capital city.
 

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Comments:

Johnson & Wales is pretty crafty to ink a deal NOW, knowing, like death and taxes, the struggling municipalities will be back in short order for MORE. Almost like they're looking into a crystal ball and can clearly see the democrat/liberal way of running things will continue and the money problems will end up at their front door in no time at all.

Comment #1 by David Beagle on 2012 03 30

"Providence Redistricting -> Between the last-second changes and the purely political decisions, the lack of transparency throughout the city’s redistricting process was downright appalling. While there are certainly arguments to be made in favor of the new map, it’s a shame so many changes came behind closed doors."

Your not kidding!!!

Comment #2 by anthony sionni on 2012 03 30

A date on a fundraising letter puts Doherty in your "Not Hot" cross-hairs and hiding a $100 million debt goes largely un-noticed...

http://bostonherald.com/news/regional/view/20220330mano_a_mayor_in_providence_cianci_takes_shots_at_cicilline_for_hiding_100m_debt/

It is comical how Dem "bought and paid for" you've become. Where have all the real journalists gone?

Comment #3 by David Allen on 2012 03 30

Wow, Deborah Gist is not "hot" because teachers don't like her... hmmm, so someone who comes into RI with fresh ideas - one of them being holding teachers accountable for their (lack of) performance, and because those same teachers have voted that she's unfavorable makes her not "hot". Give me a break, with a cherry on top.

Comment #4 by Michael Chippendale on 2012 03 30

Maybe a change in the title of this column to, "Who's in the News" or "Political Update with Danny Mac". When a you're heading for the Mariana Trench, no one can be considered hot.

Comment #5 by David Beagle on 2012 03 30

ATTENTION GOLOCALPROV

RI now ranks #2 in Unemployment! Which means there are 48 other states where employment is BETTER than Rhode Island. We rank 50th in business Climate (dead last). We are near the top in the misery index. We rank as one of the worst place to retire. Shall I go on?

Why do you think this is true? Why are we near or at the bottom in every category? Because the Democrats have put us here with 75 years of absolute power and control.

So just keep doing what the Pro Jo did and continues to do. Just keep supporting the Democrats, and their anti-business policies and soon you will get to worry about your financial health like the rest of us.

If the Democrats continue, soon more companies will leave. That means less advertisers for you. So just keep up the great work of supporting their liberal policies and help lead to the demise of the entire state.

The only way to save our state is to have balance in the Statehouse. The Democrats have been running things and our cities are near the brink of bankruptcy. Anyone their getting it yet?

Comment #6 by RI WILL BE SAVED on 2012 03 30

The Doherty e-mail did not say that March 30 was the end of the fundraising quarter. The 30th marks the deadline set to reach their quarterly goal. Rather than embarrass Col. Doherty all you did was make golocalprov.com look foolish.

Comment #7 by Melissa Enos on 2012 03 30

"Michael Riley –> Defeating Congressman Langevin will be a monumental task, but kudos to Michael Riley for at least showing he plans to spend money on the race. Riley is already on the radio and while he isn’t getting the same kind of attention Brendan Doherty is getting in the 1st District, his message is probably a bit more coherent at this point."

Which would be 1,000 times more coherent than the 75 tweets you do a day...

Anything to get a Doherty shot in, eh McGowan?

Comment #8 by David Allen on 2012 03 30

A mistake of one lousy day, and a Saturday at that? Are you freakin' serious? How about Congressmistake Chi Chi's claims that Providence was in excellent financial shape?

Comment #9 by Michael Trenn on 2012 03 31

And the unions have instructed their members to vote in the negative on Commissioner Gist. Keep in mind that the "members" are responsible for educating the future workforce of Rhode Island, including many of the children of all of you.

Comment #10 by Michael Trenn on 2012 03 31

McGowan could find a way to spin ANYTHING negative on Doherty and positive on Little Chichi.Almost makes Karen Lee Ziner look evenhanded on immigration stories!!

Comment #11 by Joseph Bernstein on 2012 03 31

Its far worse than that, JB. I just saw the emails his so-called democratic operative called into question. It was an effort called "$30 by the 30th," which was hoping to grab $30 donations to wind the quarter down. At best McGowan was disengenuous - far more likely a question of intellectual and jounalistic integrity than anything. Or to be more succinct, a flat out LIAR.

Comment #12 by David Allen on 2012 03 31

Ann Clanton -> She’s getting beat up by the far-right members of the Party . . .I was not aware the golocalprov.com was an extension of the right bashing Providence Journal - As President of the Rhode Island Republican Assembly, which this organization knows about me and has interviewed me before and published the interviews, I was wondering why I did not get a call on this, rather then golocal making some story grabbing claim that makes people say yeah we knew that about those racists - Let's understand one thing, while we all wish Ann the best, she has not been a very politically active person in RIGOP politics, so much of the op-research you claim has to do with finding out about who is in the leadership position besides just the PR statement from the state party - If it is too much to ask whose one's leaders are, then perhaps we should all become sheeple like the democrats and just go along because we were told to . . .

Comment #13 by Raymond McKay on 2012 03 31

The Doherty e-mail didn't said March 30th was the end of the quarter. It was the deadline to reach the campaign's quarterly goal (probably so they could get funds processed and deposited by the end fo the month).

While it's only a minor mistake, the lack of attention to detail is something that could catch up to someone trying to stay employed as a journalist.

Comment #14 by Todd B on 2012 04 03

The real culprit behind the farce in Providence Redistricting is City Council President Michael Solomon who wants to get campaign contributions from downtown and potential developers of the new land made available from the relocation of I-195.

His handmaiden who did the dirty work on the ward boundaries is East Side Councilman Seth Yurdin who headed up the Ward Boundary Committee of the City Council.

Solomon thirsts about being mayor after Taveras, so his puppet Yurdin jumps for him when Solomon pulls the strings. Yurdin is too weak and too afraid of his own shadow to do the deed alne ! He is a false suit.

Comment #15 by al toke on 2012 04 11




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