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

Friday, September 17, 2010


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Pat Crowley and George Nee -> These political leaders of the labor movement took on the establishment on Tuesday night and won big. If there was one clear winner of the Primaries, it was them.

Angel Taveras and Lauren Nocera  ->  This Democratic nominee for Mayor and his campaign manager shocked the pundits (who called the race a toss-up) by winning the Mayor's race with 49% of the vote and by winning 11 of 15 wards in the city of Providence. 

The Davids -> Providence Mayor David Cicilline won a convincing Primary election on Tuesday night and the other David - Rep. David Segal - also had a great night winning a surprising 20% of the vote.  Between the two of them, these two liberals won 57% of the vote in CD-1 - a strong mandate for continuing the progressive policies of Congressman Kennedy.  There's a bright future for both Davids - especially if they figure out a way to work together.

Richard Morrison ->  This Democratic nominee for State Representative in Bristol and Warren had one simple message for voters: Rep. Doug Gablinske did not represent the parents, kids and taxpayers of the neighborhood.  The voters approved his message.

Teresa Tanzi ->  Pundits assumed that this progressive would have a strong showing against Rep. David Caprio, but likely didn't have the ability to crack through the moderate voters of Narragansett.  She turned out the vote in a massive way and delivered a big blow to a political powerhouse.  Her campaign manager, Libby Kimzey, did wonders.

Anastasia Williams -> This House labor chairman was faced with a major challenge on Tuesday and rode a huge wave to victory.  Her victory was one of the few successes for the House Speaker.

Jay O'Grady ->  This Councilman took on a first-time incumbent with the support of labor and won a huge victory on Tuesday night against Mary Ann Shallcross-Smith.  Come January, he could be the next new young leader of the Democratic Party. 

Cale Keable -> Facing a primary opponent that was supported by the outgoing Representative and current chairman of the Democratic Party, this attorney won a large victory on Tuesday night in Burrillville. 

Ryan Pearson ->  In a tough 3-way Democratic primary to replace Senate Majority Leader Dan Connors in Cumberland, the young Pearson won an impressive victory and now looks to unite his opposition in the face of a tea party opponent in the general election.

Dan DaPonte ->  This Senate Finance chairman had a tough challenge and won a convincing victory in East Providence's District 14.

Steve Stycos -> This long-time environmentalist and school committee member won a huge victory in the Ward 1 Cranston City Council race. 

Frank Lombardo  ->  Anyone who wins an 8-way primary makes the hot list.  And Johnston's District 25 fits the bill!

Chris Blazejewski -> This Drinking Liberally founder and future progressive star won a Democratic primary to replace the outgoing Rep. David Segal.  On a night when Reps. Sullivan, Segal, Pacheo and Fierro were on the way out, Blaz's victory was a breath of fresh air for progressives.

Maria Cimini  ->  This unendorsed Democrat defeated her opponent and the endorsement of the outgoing Rep. Joanne Giannini.  Ditto on the points above too about a new progressive taking the place of the old.

SEIU  ->  The service employees union had a great night - both in supporting one of their members - David Bennett, in taking a leadership role in the Tanzi campaign and for beng 1 of 2 major unions to endorse Angel Taveras in the mayoral election.


Buddy Cianci ->  Cianci went "all in" to defeat Cicilline and Taveras with a summer-long campaign of attacks.  He lost big.  In fact, no one had a worse day on Tuesday than Cianci. David Cicilline cruised to victory in CD-1 and Angel Taveras walloped the field for Mayor of Providence. Buddy: meet irrelevance.

Frank Caprio -> Not only did his brother suffer a crushing defeat in House District 34, but Caprio continues to struggle to explain his meetings with Republicans.  To make matters worse, Caprio does not seem to recognize his bleeding support among Democrats and is mouthing Republican talking points like supporting the Bush tax cuts.

Al Gemma -> This long-time political gadfly got squished on Tuesday night by registered nurse David Bennett.  Middle-class Warwick voters clearly saw the need for a State Representative who spoke to their common sense needs for jobs, schools and the American Dream instead of endless political posturing.

Joe Almeida -> How do you lose a race in which your opponent is on the front page for being investigated for possible illicit activity just weeks before the election?  Really?

Send me your HOT and NOT tips to mjerzyk at gmail dot com.


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