Scott MacKay

Political Analyst

With a B.A. in political science and history from the University of Vermont and a wealth of knowledge of local politics, it was a given that Scott MacKay would become a commentator for Rhode Island Public Radio's Political Roundtable.

As a former political reporter for The Providence Journal, MacKay has spent more than thirty years documenting the ins and outs of politics in Rhode Island and New England. MacKay is married to Dr. Staci Fisher, an infectious diseases specialist.

Follow Scott on Twitter: @ScotMackRI

Ways to Connect

Ian Donnis / RIPR

In this season of peace and good will to all, now comes RI House Minority Leader Patricia Morgan, R-West Warwick, to rip down the mistletoe, knock over the menorah and pour paint thinner in the eggnog.

What else can we take from her ill-advised legislation to "allow" teachers to say Merry Christmas to students and teach them about the history of the various traditions of winter holidays. Talk about a solution looking for a problem.

In no particular order, the best of what I read in 2016 and some titles I’m looking forward to in the new year. These thoughts are particularly my own and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of RIPR or anyone else.

FICTION:

"The Sellout" by Paul Beatty: The first American author to win the Man Booker Prize spins a raucous, satirical tale about race in America, set in Los Angeles. Mordant humor abounds.

'Twas the night before Christmas at the Rhode Island Statehouse and not a creature was stirring or clicking a mouse.

Elisabeth Harrison

Rhode Island's U.S. Sen. Jack Reed said Tuesday that he has "serious concerns" about President-elect Donald Trump’s choice of Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson to be secretary of state.

In a statement, Reed said Tillerson "deserves a fair confirmation process" but said he will face tough questions from Democrats and Republicans.

"I have serious concerns about Mr. Tillerson’s nomination and it serves as a reminder of the need to quickly and thoroughly investigate Russia’s campaign to subvert our election and our country’s interests," said Reed.

Memorial Service for Tom scheduled for Saturday January 7, 2017 at 11 a.m. at Grace Episcopal Church, 175 Mathewson Street, Providence.

Thomas S. LaFauci, a U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee staffer,  gifted speech writer and aide to such top Democratic political figures as Joe Biden, John Kerry, Thomas Foley and Bob Menendez, died last night at Rhode Island Hospital after being stricken at home in Cranston. He was 67.

He has been battling an unusual lung disorder recently, but his death was unexpected, said his widow, Elizabeth `Libby’ Rock.

Jarek Tuszyński / Creative Commons License

As we saw during the presidential campaign, abortion continues to be a wedge issue in American politics. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says that the rhetoric on this issue may be up, but abortions are down.

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

The campaigns are over, but the debates about voting rage on. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says it’s time for Rhode Island to consider some election changes.

Michael Vadon, Cecil Stoughton, White House / Publicn Domain, Creative Commons License

A divisive election and Rhode Island’s legacy of organized crime have gotten lots of media attention lately. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay reflects on an anniversary that he worries has become an afterthought.

RIPR FILE

An earthquake election left Republicans in control of Congress and the White House. How will Democrats respond? RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay posed the question to Sen. Jack Reed, the senior Rhode Island member of Congress.

RIPR FILE

Rhode Island’s unemployment rate inched down to 5.5 percent in October and the state gained jobs, but the Ocean State’s jobless rate was higher than neighboring Massachusetts and Connecticut, according to the state Department of Labor and Training.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Longtime Rhode Island Congressman Jim Langevin has a new chief of staff. Kristin Nicholson is leaving Democrat Langevin’s office to take a job at Georgetown University.

Nicholson, who has been with Langevin since his first election to the House in 2000, will become director of the Government Affairs Institute at Georgetown. Taking over for Nicholson as chief of staff is Todd Adams, currently Langevin’s legislative director.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

The afternoons are growing dark, a chill leavens even sunny days and a New England winter beckons. It’s time to get ready for the holidays, with Thanksgiving up next.  The chill and the holiday remind us once again that it’s time for us to reach into our hearts and search the closets for old winter coats to donate to the 20th annual Rhode Island Buy Nothing Winter Coat Exchange.

BU Rob13, Gage Skidmore / Creative Commons License

Every American election brings an assessment of how well the media covered  things. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says there should be some vigorous scrutiny of the 2016 election cycle.

RIPR FILE

On the no-drama Rhode Island political front, the Democratic leadership of the state senate has scheduled a caucus at the Statehouse at 6 p.m. tonight to re-nominate Newport Sen. Teresa Paiva Weed as Senate President and Providence Sen. Dominick Ruggerio as majority leader. The meeting is public, according to Senate spokesman Greg Pare.

chensiyuan / Wikimedia Commons / Creative Commons License

Raymond `Beaver’ Tempest Jr. remains a free man, the Rhode Island Supreme Court ruled again in a decision released today.

The high court rejected Atty. Gen. Peter Kilmartin’s attempt to re-argue the 1982 murder of Doreen Picard, a Woonsocket homecoming queen. The court ruled that the state had not raised novel legal issues in the bid to argue the case again.

The opinion carried dissents from Chief Justice Paul Suttell and Justice Maureen McKenna Goldberg. Both said the state’s case had merit.

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