Scott MacKay's Commentary

Monday 6:35 AM and 8:35 AM
Scott MacKay
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Scott MacKay Commentary
8:27 am
Mon August 5, 2013

Little Rhody's Big Image Problem

What's right about Rhode Island, asks Scott MacKay, what about the great restaurants, fresh lobster and miles of beautiful coastline.
Credit file / RIPR

Once again, Rhode Island has embarked on an advertising campaign to raise our state’s flagging self-esteem. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says it’s time for us to stop running down our tiny corner of New England.

Back in 1996, when Jack Reed was running his first U.S. Senate campaign, Texas Gov. Ann Richards came to Newport to speak at a Reed fund-raiser. The tart-tongued Texan introduced the vertically-challenged Rhode Island Democrat by saying to prolonged laughter that Reed is proof ``that size doesn’t matter.’’

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Scott MacKay Commentary
8:22 am
Mon July 29, 2013

To Stabilize Power Costs, Rhode Islanders Need to Look North

Our  air conditioners have been working overtime in this steamy summer. Our wallets will be lighter when the electricity bills arrive. Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay says to stabilize power costs, Rhode Island needs to look north to Canada.

Flick the wall switch and the lights go on. Turn the knob; the stove heats up. Push a button; the air conditioner hums.

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Scott MacKay Commentary
8:40 am
Mon July 22, 2013

Bryant University; A War Between Town and Gown

Byrant University has come to a head with the town of Smithfield, which feels the school should pay more for things like emergency services.
Credit Courtesy Bryant University

Rhode Island politicians are increasingly looking to non-profit institutions to finance local government. The latest tug-of-war between town and gown is in Smithfield, where the town thinks Bryant University is not paying its fair share. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says its time for cooperation, not confrontation.

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Scott MacKay Commentary
7:12 am
Mon July 15, 2013

Why Rhode Island's Poor CNBC Rating Doesn't Tell The Whole Story

CNBC consistently rates Rhode Island among the worst states for business in the country.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Rhode Island’s business climate has once again been scored as one of the nation’s very worst. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay on why dwelling on these ratings don’t tell the whole story. 

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Scott MacKay Commentary
10:45 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Why Did the General Assembly Move Slowly After Same-Sex Marriage?

The passage of gay marriage, was one of few pieces of legislation passed before the end of the legislative session.
Credit Don Boorman / RIPR

Rhode Island’s 2013 General Assembly made history by legalizing same-sex marriage back in April. But it left Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay scratching his head wondering why lawmakers don’t handle other issues in the same manner.

After a vigorous debate, the Assembly made history in April when it approved same gender marriage, making Rhode Island the 12th American state to sanction gay unions.

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Scott MacKay Commentary
9:09 am
Mon July 1, 2013

The Repeal of DOMA: An Economic Boon to Rhode Island

When Gov. Lincoln Chafee and gay marriage advocates two years touted its economic benefits for Rhode Island they were widely disparaged. Rhode Island Public Radio's political analyst Scott MacKay explains why Chafee and his allies may well be right.

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Scott MacKay Commentary
7:04 am
Mon June 24, 2013

Will Rhode Island Ever Move Past Its 38 Studios Disaster?

Leaders at the State House have been unable to agree on what to do about the outstanding bonds owed for failed video game company 38 Studios.
Credit Don Boorman / RIPR

Will Rhode Island ever get beyond the shadow of the 38 Studios-Curt Schilling disaster. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay on why state government so far has not developed options for putting this behind us.

President John F. Kennedy said famously that ``life is unfair.’’ Some men,’’ he noted, ‘’are killed in a war, some men are wounded and some men never leave the country.’’

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Scott MacKay Commentary
8:05 am
Mon June 17, 2013

Rhode Island is Foreign Territory For Republicans

Rhode Island and the rest of New England have become foreign territory for Republicans, says Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay.   

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Scott MacKay Commentary
8:54 am
Mon June 3, 2013

Lincoln Chafee's New Political Future as a Democrat

Lincoln Chafee is now the first Democratic Rhode Island governor since the early 1990’s. Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay wonders what the governor’s party change means for his future.

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Scott MacKay Commentary
8:31 am
Mon May 27, 2013

Despite Reforms, Connections Can Still Lead to Judgeships

Lobbyists on Smith Hill continue to have power in the appointment of new judges.
Credit Don Boorman / RIPR

After the Rhode Island court scandals of the 1990’s, the state changed the way judges are chosen. Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay explains why lawyers with Statehouse connections keep getting appointed to the bench … despite the reforms.

Common Cause of Rhode Island, the good government group, the Rhode Island Bar Association and a past president of the NAACP skewered Gov. Lincoln Chafee recently when he elevated former Senate President Joe Montalbano to a coveted judgeship on the state superior court bench.

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