On Politics

On Politics
3:57 pm
Mon January 28, 2013

What to watch for in Taveras' State of the City address

Taveras during his 2012 State of the City address
Credit Ian Donnis

Providence Mayor Angel Taveras faces a sharply different landscape as he prepares to deliver his second State of the City address at 5:30 pm Tuesday in the City Council Chambers at City Hall. A year ago at this time, Taveras warned of how Providence faced the possibility of going bust. Now, the mayor can tout considerable improvements in the city's fiscal standing - a narrative that meshes with his expected gubernatorial run in 2014.

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On Politics
2:40 pm
Mon January 28, 2013

Are you sure about this Sen. Ciccone?

As is always the case during debate on emotional social issues, the verbal parrying at the State House can drift into seriously ridiculous misinformation. Such is the case in Sunday’s gay marriage page one ProJo story by Phil Marcelo.

In this piece, Marcelo quotes Sen. Frank Ciccone III, D-Providence. Ciccone is a prominent opponent of same gender marriage; he has introduced legislation calling for a voter referendum on the issue.

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On Politics
10:42 am
Mon January 28, 2013

Of Taveras, Marsalis, Buddy and Jazz

Being Providence mayor is a tough job, but it isn’t all about filling potholes and budget deficits and cajoling municipal union leaders. On Sunday, Mayor Angel Taveras showed up at Veterans Memorial Auditorium to greet jazz great Wynton Marsalis.

Before introducing Marsalis, Taveras told the packed house that being mayor ``comes with certain privileges.’’

That phrase drew a ripple of  knowing Rhode Islandesque laughter. Taveras quickly deadpanned, ``I’m not Buddy.’’

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On Politics
2:31 pm
Fri January 25, 2013

Senate President Paiva Weed's legacy hinges on gay marriage

Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed
Credit courtesy of Teresa Paiva Weed

Same sex marriage has won overwhelming approval in the Rhode Island House. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay on what’s next in this historic debate.

If you don’t believe the political landscape in Rhode Island has undergone a seismic shift, you weren’t at McKim, Mead and White’s State House for the historic House vote on same sex marriage.  The measure won overwhelmingly on a 51 to 19 tally.

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On Politics
4:12 pm
Wed January 23, 2013

Bernice King at Brown; Charles Ogletree at URI

Two of the nation’s leading African-American intellectuals will be speaking at Brown University and  the University of Rhode Island.

URI will host Charles Ogletree on Feb. 5. Ogletree is a nationally-known Harvard University Law School professor and longtime mentor and adviser to President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama. Both the Obamas were Ogletree’s students at Harvard. Ogletree is an expert on criminal and civil rights legal issues.

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On Politics
6:18 pm
Tue January 22, 2013

Same sex marriage clears RI House Judiciary

Same-sex marriage legislation has cleared its first hurdle in the Rhode Island General Assembly. The House Judiciary Committee approved marriage equality legislation proposed by Rep. Art Handy, D-Cranston on a unanimous vote. The historic move represents the first time any committee in either RI legislative chamber has approved a gay marriage measure.

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On Politics
4:29 pm
Fri January 18, 2013

RI pols and guns

For once Rhode Island politicians have a chance at being part of the solution. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says even a small State House change on gun violence would resonate with voters.

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On Politics
5:21 pm
Fri January 4, 2013

Whither the Assembly on Education Boards?

Credit RIPR file

We’ve all heard that old New England adage, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. When it comes to education in Rhode Island, RIPR’s Scott MacKay has this collorary: if it is broken make sure you fix it before you change it.


At the end of the last General Assembly session, when nobody was looking, Rhode Island lawmakers decided to junk the state’s boards that oversee education. Without any hearings or studies, the Assembly, in its infinite wisdom, abolished both of the boards that made policies for higher education and kindergarten through grade 12.

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On Politics
1:22 pm
Mon December 31, 2012

Are there too many lawyers in the General Assembly?

As the General Assembly starts a new session on Tuesday, one legislative constant will remain unchanged -- a lot of the 113 lawmakers on Smith Hill are lawyers.

The ProJo's Political Scene says there are 24 lawyers in the legislature -- 15 in the 75-member House and nine in the 38-member Senate:

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On Politics
4:29 pm
Fri December 28, 2012

TGIF: Answering RI's 12 top political questions of 2012

We’re offering a slight break from TGIF’s usual format this week with a look back at how 12 of the big questions of Rhode Island politics played out in 2012. As always, feel free to share your thoughts and comments on the blog or by email: idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org.

Question 1. Will Governor Lincoln Chafee offer a more coherent message that helps lift his slumping approval rating?

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