A former government watchdog says governors and state legislators have weakened efforts meant to depoliticize the selection of judges.
The Judicial Nominating Commission was created 20 years ago to try to lessen the General Assembly’s influence on picking judges. The JNC is supposed to choose 3 to 5 highly qualified candidates, and the legislature is expected to act quickly once a governor picks a judge. But former Common Cause head Phil West said governors and lawmakers have fouled up the process.
H. Philip West Jr. served as the executive director of Common Cause of Rhode Island for almost 20 years before stepping down in 2006. His tenure coincided with corruption in Governor Edward DiPrete’s administration, the state banking crisis, and high-profile battles over the Ethics Commission. West has turned his two decades observing Ocean State politics into a 684-page book called “Secrets and Scandals.” Rhode Island Public Radio Reporter Ian Donnis sat down with West to discuss the book and how much Rhode Island has changed.
State Senator Dawson Hodgson (R-North Kingstown), the Republican candidate for attorney general in last week's election, joins Political Roundtable to talk about what went wrong; the outlook on the state budget; the transitions for the state's new elected officials; and more.
Fewer than half of eligible Rhode Island voters participated in Tuesday’s statewide election, and the state's next secretary of state says she's going to try to increase that percentage.
The latest tally by the state Board of Elections shows that 44 percent percent of registered voters cast a ballot on Tuesday. Secretary of State-elect Nellie Gorbea says she’s not satisfied with that kind of turnout and wants to get more people involved in state government.
Providence Mayor-elect Jorge Elorza joins Political Roundtable to discuss his victory in this week's election and what it means for Rhode Island's capital city; the win for governor by Democrat Gina Raimondo over Republican Allan Fung; the continued electoral success of Rhode Island Democrats; and the defeat at the polls for a constitutional convention.
Providence Mayor-elect Jorge Elorza joins Bonus Q+A to talk about a host of issues facing the city, including taxes, schools, the structural deficit, relations with the City Council, and developing the former I-195 land.
Allan Fung said despite losing his bid for governor, he’s proud of the race he ran. Fung’s democratic rival Gina Raimondo won the race with just 40 percent of the vote. Fung said maybe it’s time for runoff elections.
"The moose was on the loose," is how Fung describes the 22 percent gleaned by Moderate Party candidate Bob Healey, referring to Healey’s days as the cool moose candidate. Fung’s main opponent, Gina Raimondo, is the second consecutive governor elected with less than 50 percent of the vote.
Developer Joe Paolino says he’ll try again to bring table games to Newport. Voters approved turn the Newport Grand slot parlor into a casino, but Newporters voted it down.
Massachusetts voters gave gambling there a thumbs up. And that will hurt the slot parlor, said Paolino “You know right now I’m more concerned about the workers, because the workers are the ones that really put up this fight, they’re very concerned about their jobs.”
Proponents pushed the jobs angle; while opponents said a casino didn’t fit in Newport.