On Politics

Rhode Island Public Radio's political blog. Scott MacKay and Ian Donnis keep you up-to-date with the latest in political news from around Rhode Island.

Full archives of this blog can be found here.

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On Politics
7:23 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

TGIF: 15 Things to Know About Rhode Island Politics & Media

It's been another wild week in Rhode Island politics and things will only get more intense on the way to the September 9th primary. So strap yourself in, send your tips and thoughts to me at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and follow me on the twitters whenever you're lucid and awake. Here we go.

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On Politics
3:02 pm
Fri August 22, 2014

The Providence mayoral campaign 11th hour scramble

The Providence mayoral campaign has featured more twists and turns than a Grand Prix auto race. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay on what’s next in the run for City Hall.

This we know about Providence politics: One person’s backroom deal is another person’s noble gesture.

That is what voters will decide in the September 9 Democratic primary, when the favorite, City Council president Michael Solomon, faces off against Jorge Elorza, a law professor and political neophyte. (Perennial fringe candidate Christopher Young is also in the mix).

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On Politics
12:48 am
Fri August 22, 2014

Smiley Ends Mayoral Campaign and Puts Support Behind Elorza

Smiley, right, offering his endorsement to Elorza at Prospect Park.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

Brett Smiley ended his Providence mayoral campaign Friday and threw his support behind fellow Democrat Jorge Elorza. The decision basically sets the stage for a head-to-head September 9th primary battle between Elorza and City Council President Michael Solomon, the acknowledged front-runner in the race.

Smiley's announcement came exactly 24 hours after his latest policy proposal, a road-improvement plan touted during a news conference near the Providence train station.

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On Politics
8:14 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

Taveras Campaign Makes Ani Haroian Field Director

In a move to fill the late-in-campaign departure of a key staffer, Angel Taveras' gubernatorial team has made a veteran of Rhode Island politics, Ani Haroian, its field director, RIPR has learned.

Haroian will take over the role left open by the exit of Whitney Larsen, for a job with the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) working on a high-profile US House race in Colorado.

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On Politics
3:33 pm
Thu August 21, 2014

Raimondo creates Narragansett Brewing jobs in New York, Massachusetts not R.I.

Rhode Islanders of a certain age well remember the `Hi Neighbor, Have a `Gansett’ television advertising campaign  that pushed Narragansett Beer, which in days of yore was brewed in Cranston. Now Gina Raimondo is using an old timey Narragansett commercial to tout her campaign for governor.

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On Politics
11:10 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Taveras' Field Director Joining High-Profile US House Race in Colorado

The field director for Angel Taveras' gubernatorial campaign, Whitney Larsen, has left that job to work for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee on one of the nation's most high-profile US House races, RIPR has learned.

Larsen will working on the effort to help elect Democrat Andrew Romanoff, a former speaker of the Colorado House, in his challenge to Republican Representative Mike Coffman. Larsen did not respond to a request for comment.

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On Politics
6:24 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Renew RI Coalition Says ConCon Needed to Overcome Legislative Intransigence

Sasse and Flanders (center) make their case for a convention.
Credit Ian Donnis / RIPR

A new coalition known as Renew RI held a news conference near the Roger Williams National Memorial in Providence Wednesday morning to assert that a constitutional convention is needed to overcome the General Assembly's unwillingness to pass needed government reforms.

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On Politics
2:45 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Providence East Side: Where democracy flourishes in House District 4

While pols and pundits lament the lack of competition in R.I. House elections across Rhode Island – almost half of all lawmakers are unopposed – that isn’t the case on Providence’s East Side House District 4.

The seat opened up after the incumbent, former House Speaker Gordon Fox, stepped away after his capitol office and home were raided by state and federal agents in March. Fox hasn’t been charged with any crimes yet, but he wisely decided against running again.

Three well-qualified Democrats are vying for their party’s nomination in the September 9 primary.

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On Politics
12:19 pm
Wed August 20, 2014

Media General Shedding WJAR As Part of Merger With LIN Media

Media General, which announced plans earlier this year to merge with LIN Media, the parent of WPRI-TV (Channel 12), is shedding WJAR-TV (Channel 10) as part of the deal.

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On Politics
9:40 am
Wed August 20, 2014

WPRI-ProJo Poll Has Mixed News for Raimondo, Taveras & Pell

On the surface, the latest WPRI-TV/Providence Journal poll might seem like a clear win for Gina Raimondo, since she leads her closest Democratic primary rival, Angel Taveras by five points, 32 percent to 27 percent, with Clay Pell (26 percent) right behind Taveras.

Yet Raimondo's lead is barely larger than the 4.38 percent margin of error in the poll, and 13 percent of voters remain undecided with just under three weeks to go until the September 9 primary.

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