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Side of the Rhode: Who’s hot and who’s not in RI politics?

Saturday, October 30, 2010


Read Who's Hot and Who's Not every week at http://www.GoLocalProv.com.


Lincoln Chafee -> There have been 3 polls in October and Chafee has led in all of them. WPRI has him up 7. WJAR has him up 7. Rasmussen has him up 7.  At this point, the odds are that Chafee will win this race - even if it is with less than 40% of the vote.  And, with a strong ground game of progressive organizations, it is hard to see a let down of turn out on Election Day.  

The Undecideds -> There are 12% of Rhode Islanders who are "undecided" in the Governor's race. To whom will these late voters swing? Will they go indy with Chafee or moderate with Block or right-wing with Robitaille? Or will a whole block of undecideds vote "straight Democrat" and pull the lever for Caprio?

The Ground Game -> In 2006, Charlie Fogarty almost overcame a 7 point deficit in the polls with a stellar Democratic ground game. Will we see a similar effort in 2010 that will also help Democratic candidates down ticket in the House, the Senate and in local races? Not an easy question nor an easy answer. Surprisingly, Caprio has not mimicked Sheldon Whitehouse's successful 2006 campaign and hired a massive field staff. Instead, he has invested heavily in TV. Questionable.  And, the remaining "grassroots heavyweights" - from SEIU to the NEA to Clean Water Action to the Latino PAC to other labor unions - are with Chafee, not Caprio.

Michael Bloomberg, Bill Clinton, Mitt Romney  ->  These national names are coming to the Ocean state to stump for gubernatorial candidates Chafee, Caprio and Robitaille respectively.  Who will be the "godfather" that delivers for their candidate?

John Robitaille  ->  This Republican gubernatorial candidate has jumped from the low 20s to the high 20s in recent polling - to the detriment of conservative Democrat Caprio - and he's making a serious run for the State House with a serious ad buy from the RGA.  While his stock is rising, there is simply not enough time, nor enough Rhode Islanders, who will push Robitaille over the 35% marker to win the race.

Women's Fund of RI  ->  A Steering Committee of local women leaders, under the guidance of the Women’s Fund of Rhode Island, not only came together to form the Rhode Island Government Appointments Project (RI-GAP), an effort to increase the number of women appointed by the governor to cabinet level positions, boards, and commissions in the public sector, but also recently got gubernatorial candidates Caprio, Chafee, Block and Robitalle to sign onto their pledge.  Get involved here.

Gordon Fox  ->  Recent stories have detailed a repeat attempt by a dissident coalition now led by Rep. Thomas Winfield to take on the House leadership led by Speaker Gordon Fox.  This was supposed to be the big "Fox test" similar to the one that Bill Murphy faced.  However, all signs point to Fox maintaining a strong leadership coalition with his majority leader Nick Mattiello and his majority whip Patrick O'Neill.

Scott Avedisian, Allan Fung, Angel Taveras, Donald Grebien  ->  These likely incoming Mayors of Warwick, Cranston, Providence and Pawtucket respectively will certainly provide a fresh face for the leadership of Rhode Island's largest cities.  You can call the first two Republicans and the last two Democrats, but the one thing you can't accuse this quartet of being is status quo Rhode Island politicians.  

Peter Kilmartin  ->  This Democratic Attorney General candidate has swept the endorsements of the the Providence Journal and the Providence Phoenix as well has been the recipient of a sizeable ad buy by the Democratic Attorney General Association.

David Segal  ->  This State Rep. and CD-1 candidate came out and endorsed David Cicilline for Congress this week.  You should read his endorsement for a clear analysis of what is at stake in CD-1.

John DePetro  ->  With Caprio's "Shove it" interview that went national, DePetro demonstrated why he is in a league above afternoon host Buddy Cianci.  DePetro made WPRO a big player in the election and not just background noise.


Frank Caprio -> This Democratic gubernatorial candidate committed a catastrophic political blunder with his disrespectful 'shove it' comment to the President of the United States. After alienating labor, immigrants, progressives, environmentalists, and (most recently), the LGBT community, Caprio's remark took a bite out of Caprio's remaining base: African-Americans and diehard Democrats.

John Loughlin  ->  As DM points out, PolitiFact takes down John Loughlin, just as it did here, here, here and here.  Talk about a campaign of misinformation!  

Bob Healey  ->  What happened to that MoJo?  Will he even crack 40%?

Will Grapentine  ->  This Republican candidate running for State Representative in Bristol and Warren against Ray Gallison sent out a mailing with an election date as "November 4th" as opposed to the actual date of November 2nd.  Woops!

Ken Block  ->  This Moderate Party candidate had a plan to spend a good chunk of his own personal money and to emerge as the 3rd party alternative to a slug-fest as has emerged between Caprio and Chafee.  And yet, he's still not breaking 5% in most polls. 

Send your tips to mjerzyk at gmail dot com.


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