Politics
8:35 am
Wed November 3, 2010

Chafee, Cicilline win big

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Independent Lincoln Chafee won a close race to become Rhode Island's next governor.

His victory comes after months in which his rivals sharply criticized his plan to add a one percent sales tax on currently exempt items. Unofficial results show Chafee with 36 percent, Republican John Robitaille with just under 34 percent, Democrat Frank Caprio with 23 percent, and Moderate Ken Block with just under seven percent.

Chafee vows candor will remain his signature as the state's next governor.

"I will always listen to you, and I will always do what I believe is right for Rhode Island," Chafee said last ngiht.

When he takes office in January, Chafee will be the first governor to not belong to a major political party since around the time of the Civil War.

Meanwhile, Providence mayor David Cicilline has won the congressional seat being vacated by Patrick Kennedy.

The final unofficial results show Cicilline winning with 51 percent of the vote compared to State Representative John Loughlin's 45 percent.

Loughlin was ahead early in the evening. But as the night wore on it became clear he couldn't pull it off and shortly before eleven he called Providence Mayor David Cicilline to concede.

Loughlin urged his supporters to continue fighting for what they believe in.

"We may have lost tonight but I hope the energy and enthusiasm that you showed during my campaign can continue to be nurtured," Loughlin said.

Cicilline was all smiles as he accepted the accolades of supporters at the Biltmore Hotel and declared victory in his quest for the first district congressional seat.

"I made one promise in this campaign," Cicilline said. "I make one promise tonight: that I will go to Washington and fight hard every single day to deliver real results to Rhode Island."

Cicilline had the advantage of more money and greater name recognition.

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