tea party

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Eliminating the master lever in Rhode Island elections is picking up steam in the General Assembly. RIPR political analyst  Scott MacKay says getting rid of straight party voting may be much ado about not much.

The Rhode Island House of Representatives recently voted unanimously to end the so-called master lever, a relic of the state’s urban political machine past. A conga line of statewide elected politicians, from Gov. Lincoln Chafee down to Secretary of State Ralph Mollis, support this change.


What is the Tea Party’s future in Rhode Island Republican politics? Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay talks tea about two announced GOP candidates for governor.

Scott MacKay’s commentary can be heard every Monday on Morning Edition at 6:35 and 8:35 and on All Things Considered at 5:50. You can also follow his political analysis and reporting at our ‘On Politics’ blog at RIPR.org.

What is the tea party’s future in Rhode Island Republican politics? RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay talks tea with the two announced GOP candidates for governor.

In April, 2010, at the height of the tea party insurgency, then-Rhode Island Gov. Don Carcieri addressed a boisterous rally on the south steps of the Statehouse. To 500 or  so  tea party activists, Carcieri bellowed, ``I love the tea party, I love the tea party.’’

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse has become the second member of the RI Washington, D.C. delegation to use the 16-day federal government shutdown as a rationale for raising campaign dollars. In an e-mail message to supporters, Whitehouse decries the Republican-inspired closing of the federal government.

``If there is one thing we have learned in these past weeks, it’s that the Tea Party will go to great lengths – including putting the American economy in danger and holding our government hostage – to destroy Obamacare,’’ writes Democrat Whitehouse.

Rhode Island’s two U.S. senators are weighing in on the IRS scandal.  The agency charged with collecting taxes has been targeting conservative groups for special attention in their applications for tax-exempt status.