Ian Donnis

Political Reporter

Ian Donnis has been the political reporter for Rhode Island Public Radio since 2009. The Washington Post has called him one of Rhode Island’s best political reporters. Besides reporting, Ian tweets at @IanDon, hosts RIPR’s weekly Political Roundtable, and contributes to the station’s On Politics blog.

He was for many years a regular panelist on WPRI/WNAC-TV’s Newsmakers, is an occasional guest on RI-PBS' A Lively Experiment, and has been a political debate panelist for each of Rhode Island's three commercial television stations.

Ian previously worked for the Providence Phoenix, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, and The Associated Press. His reporting has been recognized by the AP, the New England Press Association, the Rhode Island Press Association, and Rhode Island for Community & Justice.

Ways to Connect

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Shawna Lawton is one of two Republicans running for the chance to take on House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello for his Cranston state rep seat in November. Lawton will square off in the September primary with fellow Republican Steven Frias. Lawton said she does not plan to debate Frias. 

She said her focus for now is speaking with voters.

“My job right now on the campaign trail is to understand what people are struggling with and to listen and to should I be elected, represent their voice,” said Lawton. “And I don’t feel it necessary to debate him.”

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

State Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed has given up her membership on the Newport Democratic City Committee after almost 30 years with the group.

Enjoy the heat while you can, since we'll be complaining about the cold in four months or so. Thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. As usual, your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

The board of the state Commerce Corporation this week approved incentives to help two companies expand in Rhode Island. State Commerce Secretary Stefan Pryor stopped by our studio yesterday to discuss a range of other issues involving economic development

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Behind the scenes negotiations on the I-195 District, and the inside word from state Commerce Secretary Stefan Pryor. 

Bill Malinowski, a highly respected Providence Journal investigative reporter, has died at age 57 after being stricken with ALS, commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

A Connecticut native, Malinowski was known for being well sourced in law enforcement, and with former ProJo colleague Mike Stanton, he broke many of the stories that became focal points for the 2002 Plunder Dome trial of Providence Mayor Buddy Cianci.

US Department Of Education / Creative Commons License

  Virginia Senator Tim Kaine will be back in Rhode Island this weekend, to raise money for running mate Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. Kaine was in Newport when he got the call last month to be Clinton’s choice for vice president.

Senator Kaine will headline a fundraiser at the Newport home of Alma and Barrett Bready. Contribution levels run from $1,000 per person, up to $50,000.

Top local Democrats are hosting the event, including Governor Gina Raimondo, the state’s congressional delegation, and former Providence mayor and ambassador Joseph Paolino.

Momoneymoproblemz/Creative Commons License

The state Commerce Corporation is slated to meet Wednesday to consider incentives meant to secure General Electric jobs in Providence. Governor Gina Raimondo has said the incentives will not be paid until the jobs are actually created.

Plans were announced in June for GE to open a Providence office with about 100 initial new jobs. At the time, state officials said they expected $5.65 million in incentives, over 10 years, to be part of the deal.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

The Rhode Island Progressive Democrats on Tuesday accused House Majority Leader John DeSimone (D-Providence) of violating state ethics regulations by not disclosing income and previous state and city past-due taxes.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

The end of the criminal investigation over 38 Studios is sparking debate about whether material from the probe should be released to the public. 

The dispute reflects the questions many residents still have about the state-backed video game company and its costly meltdown.

Don't look now, but it's barely more than 30 days until the state primary election that will help shape the next class of state lawmakers. Meanwhile, debate about 38 Studios has again reached a fever pitch. So thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. As usual, your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Steven Frias, one of two Republicans running for the state rep seat held by House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello, joins Political Roundtable this week to discuss 38 Studios, his campaign, and Donald Trump.

Steven Frias joins Bonus Q&A to talk about his run for the state rep seat held by House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello. We also talk about the challenges facing the state GOP, Frias' policy proposals, and other issues.

The executive editor of The Providence Journal said it's "a mistaken assumption" to believe that Katherine Gregg, who has covered the Statehouse for the ProJo for more than 30 years, won't be returning to her longtime beat.

According to an email obtained by RI Public Radio, Dave Butler writes, "Kathy is on a month's vacation, then will take a much-needed break during what looks like a slow time in the Statehouse. She'll work on projects and other things. We've not said she won't return to the Statehouse. That's a mistaken assumption."

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