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

Gage Skidmore / Creative Commons License

After eight years in the White House, President Barack Obama is waving goodbye. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay recalls the first time he met Obama, back in 2007, when he was campaigning for the New Hampshire primary.


RIPR FILE PHOTO

Once again, a national study shows some good news for Rhode Island – the Ocean State has one of the nation’s very lowest per capita gun violence rates.

Albert T. Klyberg, a prolific teacher, researcher, Rhode Island historian and for nearly three decades the executive director of the Rhode Island Historical Society, died last night in his sleep. He was 76.

Klyberg ran the society during a period of rapid expansion. Under his leadership, the society grew to include the Robinson Research Center, the Aldrich House on Providence’s East Side, and the Museum of Work and Culture in Woonsocket.

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

Rhode Island House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello wants to get rid of the car tax. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says this is a good idea, if lawmakers can find the money to pay for it.

The New Year has begun, and that means it’s time for a new legislative session on Smith Hill. Lawmakers are expected to take up a range of issues, from car taxes to a budget deficit, and perhaps recreational marijuana. Rhode Island Public Radio’s Elisabeth Harrison sat down for a preview of the legislative session with our political analyst Scott MacKay.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

As a New Year dawns, RIPR political analyst summons the spirit of Scottish poet Robert Burns, author of Auld Lang Syne, to recall some prominent Rhode Islanders who died in 2016.

Providence Business News Editor Mark Murphy joins Rhode Island Public Radio's Dave Fallon for our weekly business segment, The Bottom Line.

This week, Rhode Island Public Radio’s political commentator Scott MacKay joins Dave and Mark to look at the future of the Ocean State’s economy in the New Year.

RIPR FILE

Former Providence city archivist Paul Campbell, who was fired last year, has reached a settlement of his grievance against city government.

Campbell said he received a "modest’’ cash settlement that he would not disclose and an additional six months of pension time, bringing his total pension years with the city to about 15 years.

The city also acknowledged, through its lawyer, that Campbell "is a highly regarded individual in his field. He’s a historian and has done excellent service to the city of Providence in the city archives.’’

So I’m reading my Boston Globe sports page this a.m. when I spied Chad Finn’s sports media column and I almost tossed up in my Cheerios: CSN is cutting old friend and great baseball analyst Sean McAdam, along with veteran Boston sports guru Bob Neumeier.

Dwight Burdette / Creative Commons License

Last week, a Democratic-fueled effort to get electoral college delegates to switch their votes failed to gain traction or block the election of Republican Donald Trump, who won a majority in the Electoral College but lost the popular vote.

Bill Koplitz / Creative Commons License

Rhode Island is likely to lose one of its two U.S. House seats after the 2020 U.S. Census, according to projections by reapportionment guru Kimball W. Brace, who has for many years helped Rhode Island lawmakers draw both state legislative and congressional districts.

This comes as scant surprise to Rhode Island political insiders and the local gang of 500 that follows such news. House seats are based on population, while each state gets two senators, regardless of how many people live in a state.

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.

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