Ian Donnis

Political Reporter

Ian Donnis has been the political reporter for Rhode Island Public Radio since 2009. The Washington Post has repeatedly named him as one of Rhode Island’s best political reporters. In addition to other tasks, Ian tweets frequently 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, and remains an occasional guest on RI-PBS' A Lively Experiment. Ian previously worked for the Providence Phoenix, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, and The Associated Press. His reporting has been recognized by the Associated Press, the New England Press Association, the Rhode Island Press Association, and Rhode Island for Community & Justice.

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Political Roundtable
4:00 am
Fri February 22, 2013

Political Roundtable: The Station Anniversary, Raimondo's New Hire, and Dems Helping Chafee

Pablo Rodriguez.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

Pablo Rodriguez joins the panel this week as we discuss the 10th anniversary of the Station fire disaster; why Rhode Island's Democratic congressman are helping independent Governor Lincoln Chafee stage a DC fundraiser; whether it's appropriate for Treasurer Gina Raimondo to hire a campaign operative as her chief of staff; and the local impact of the latest federal budget showdown.

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On Politics
5:06 pm
Thu February 21, 2013

ACLU Raps RI AGs on Open Records Prosecutions; Kilmartin Disagrees

A new report by the state chapter of the ACLU says Rhode Island's last three attorneys general -- Sheldon Whitehouse, Patrick Lynch, and Peter Kilmartin -- have prosecuted violations of the state's open records law less than four percent of the time from 1999 to last June.

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On Politics
2:08 pm
Thu February 21, 2013

Central Falls Moves Forward on Ethics; Senate Compromise on Ethics Commission Remains Elusive

Diossa pledged as a candidate to bolster ethics in Central Falls.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

The tiny city of Central Falls  is moving ahead Thursday evening with what is considered one of the toughest ethics reforms for a small municipality in the country,  even as efforts to restore state Ethics Commission oversight of the General Assembly continue to languish.

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On Politics
5:08 pm
Wed February 20, 2013

Raimondo bringing in experienced campaign veteran as chief of staff

Gina Raimondo
Credit RIPR file

State Treasurer Gina Raimondo is hiring Andrew Roos, an experienced campaign operative who helmed Myrth York's 2002 gubernatorial general election campaign, as her chief of staff, RIPR has learned. The move is the latest signal that Raimondo is very likely to run for governor in 2014.

Raimondo's chief of staff since 2011, Joe Pratt, will reportedly get a different job within her office.

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Politics
3:52 pm
Wed February 20, 2013

Gov. Chafee: RI Taking a Methodical Approach to Improving the Economy

Credit RIPR file / RIPR

Gov. Lincoln Chafee says the findings in a new report are part of the process of improving Rhode Island’s economy.

The report centers on the state’s business climate and found Rhode Island has made some progress in cutting taxes but they’re still perceived as being a potential roadblock to attracting new business. It also found gaps in funding for start ups.

Chafee says the process is part of what he calls a methodical approach his administration is using to target a better economy.

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On Politics
10:28 am
Wed February 20, 2013

Brown's Paxson, ProJo's Sutton Among Business Coalition Backing Same-Sex Marriage

Rhode Islanders United for Marriage, the coalition pushing for the state Senate to pass same-sex marriage, has unveiled a new group, Rhode Island Business Leaders for Marriage Equality, whose prominent members include Brown University President Christina Paxson (not yet listed on the Web site) and Providence Journal publisher Howard Sutton.

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On Politics
5:06 pm
Tue February 19, 2013

Reed + Whitehouse well-positioned to gain Senate seniority

With a wave of departures in the US Senate, Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse are positioned to expand their seniority -- a potent coin of the realm in Congress.

Aaron Blake reports at The Fix on the turnover:

Currently, 24 senators have called it quits between 2010 and today — just three less than the previous high of 27 retirements between 1992 and 1996.

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On Politics
3:10 pm
Tue February 19, 2013

Cyber-security comes of age as a media hot topic

Cyber-security -- a topic long championed by Congressman Jim Langevin -- has finally emerged as a bona fide hot topic.

Tech writer Arik Hesseldahl offers this overview Tuesday, in a piece ominously headlined, "Cyberwar with China is here, like it or not":

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Local Features
4:00 am
Tue February 19, 2013

US Attorney Neronha says prosecutions alone can't solve gun-related violence in RI

Neronha says federal prosecutors try to go after the "worst of the worst."
Credit Ian Donnis

US Attorney Peter Neronha is Rhode Island's top federal prosecutor. His office prosecutes about 40 or so gun-related cases each year, some of them with far stiffer sentences than state prosecutions. But Neronha says prosecutions are just one part of what it will take to reduce gun-related crime. He also questions the view among some in law enforcement that federal sentencing has a stronger deterrent effect in gun cases.

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On Politics
4:42 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

TGIF: 12 things to know about RI politics + media

Welcome back to my Friday column. (Sorry to miss you last week; there was a little snow, as you might have heard.) Your thoughts and email are welcome, as always, at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org.

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