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 at Rhode Island Hospital.

Follow Scott on Twitter: @ScotMackRI

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On Politics
1:39 pm
Fri August 24, 2012

Misplaced voter fraud concerns

Do Rhode Islanders have an unquenchable thirst for campaign nuttiness? From the reaction of   both mainstream media and talk show wacko world to Anthony Gemma’s latest skewed salvo, one might think so.

The talk show babblers are in full throat. The ProJo’s front page Thursday morning ran Gemma’s nonsense as if WW III was imminent. Practically the entire city room was assigned a piece of the story. In the end, the article did very little to advance the issue.

Readers knew no more about the Gemma allegations Thursday morning than they did Wednesday afternoon.

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On Politics
2:44 pm
Thu August 23, 2012

Gemma’s timeless nonsense

Democratic Congressional candidate Anthony Gemma says there is widespread voter fraud in Providence. RIPR’s Scott MacKay reminds us that such allegations aren’t new in Rhode Island.

Charges of voter suppression, chicanery and outright bribery are as Rhode Island as frozen lemonade, quahogs and Narragansett Bay.

Our state’s long and florid political history is salted with jousts over who should be allowed to vote, whose votes count the most and campaign tactics straight from the underside of   the Tammany-Hall genre of electioneering.

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On Politics
1:47 pm
Thu August 23, 2012

Cicilline targets women voters in direct mail

While Anthony Gemma used gobs of free media Wednesday on voter fraud allegations that may or may not have credence, incumbent Congressman David Cicilline is hewing to traditional Democratic campaign themes in the run up to next month’s primary for the party’s nomination for U.S. Rep. in the First Congressional District.

In campaign direct mail, Cicilline is courting women voters and taking aim at Gemma’s anti-abortion comments in an interview on a local radio talk show. Gemma called himself “pro-life’’ in an appearance on the Helen Glover program in April.

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On Politics
1:51 pm
Tue August 21, 2012

Hinckley to mount $500,000 media buy in race against Sen. Whitehouse

Republican U.S. Senate candidate Barry Hinckley’s campaign says he has made an advertising buy of about $500,000 in broadcast, radio and cable television time.

Republican Hinckley, of Newport, says the advertising will begin Aug. 29 and run through Election Day, Nov. 6, in his campaign to unseat incumbent Democrat Sheldon Whitehouse.

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On Politics
3:54 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Chafee invited to Democratic National Convention

Gov. Lincoln Chafee will join such Rhode Island Democratic Party leaders as House Speaker Gordon Fox, Lt. Gov. Elizabeth Roberts and General Treasurer Gina Raimondo at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte between September 4th to 6th.

Chafee, a Republican-turned-independent, has been invited to the convention because of his support for President Obama, says Democratic State Chairman Edwin Pacheco.

Chafee is one of 35 national “co-chairs’’ of Obama’s reelection campaign.

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On Politics
2:00 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Gov. Chafee son charged in beer party investigation

UPDATE: Governor Chafee has issued a statement saying that “Caleb will accept responsibility for his actions.” The governor also said that he and his wife “have taken this matter seriously.”

Gov. Lincoln Chafee’s son, Caleb Chafee, has been charged with a count of  violating  Rhode Island’s social host law that bars serving alcohol to people not old enough to meet the state’s 21-year old drinking age.

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On Politics
2:06 pm
Thu August 16, 2012

Too many Guns

The carnage of gun violence has marred summer all across America. RIPR Political analyst Scott MacKay says Rhode Island lawmakers can offer a helping hand.

From the Rocky Mountains to New England’s craggy coast, each week brings another desultory report of  lives cut short by murder. You can’t  flick on a television news spot these days without another incident in the blur of senseless killing.

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On Politics
2:09 pm
Wed August 15, 2012

Obama Challenge: GOTV

Political professionals know that every election is decided by who turns out at the polls. It is one of the trite truths of campaigns. Well, guess which presidential campaign wins if more voters show up at polls? According to the Washington Post:

On Politics
1:12 pm
Wed August 15, 2012

Gay marriage moves to state ballots

Gay rights advocates have a new arena in which to battle for marriage equality: state ballots.

November‘s general election features same-sex marriage referenda on state ballots in Washington State, Maine, Minnesota and Maryland.

While public opinion on marriage equality has been moving rapidly from con to pro, same-sex marriage has never been approved in the more than 30 state elections in which some incarnation of gay marriage has been up for a vote.

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On Politics
3:30 pm
Thu August 2, 2012

The RI Gay Marriage Debate

Rhode Island has been the stage for contentious debate over same-sex marriage. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says the political landscape is shifting in favor of marriage equality.

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