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.

We also have PODCASTS of regular politics coverage, too!

Pre-2013 archives of the On Politics​ blog can be found here.

There's barely a month left in 2017, meaning we're on the brink of what promises to be a dynamic election year in Rhode Island. So thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. As usual, your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Lawrence Jackson / The Official White House Photostream

Thursday, President Donald Trump participated in a venerable ceremony than harkens back to the Calvin Coolidge Administration in the 1920s – the annual lighting of the national Christmas Tree.

At a speech in Missouri Wednesday, the president opened his remarks by saying, “I told you we would be saying Merry Christmas, again right?”

PD U.S. Government

The Internet has revolutionized communications in the 21st Century. But RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says this open communication system is threatened by a move in Washington, D.C., to remove Internet neutrality.


RIPR File Photo

The longtime head of the Rhode Island Department of Corrections, A.T. Wall, is retiring. He plans to leave the prison system early next year.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

The India-based tech company Infosys plans to add 500 new jobs in Rhode Island over the next five years while creating its first U.S. hub for digital design in Providence, state and company officials announced Monday.

Jirka Matousek / CC BY 2.0 VIA FLICKR

In a nation divided along partisan political lines, it can feel like few things still bring people together. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay has an idea he says may help. 


Courtesy Federal Communications Commission

Sen. Jack Reed, D-RI, today criticized the Trump Administration’s plan to unravel the net neutrality regulations after the Federal Communications Commission announced that it plans to eliminate the rules in a vote next month.

United States District Court for the District of Rhode Island

Federal Magistrate Jacob Hagopian of the U.S. District Court for Rhode Island has died, according to a spokesman for the court. He was 90.

RIPR File Photo

With Thanksgiving coming up, it’s time to think about things we’re grateful for. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says we can all be thankful that Rhode Island’s unemployment rate is down to its lowest in years. But the "Smallest State’s" economy still faces some big hurdles. 


Sure, Rhode Island is on a glide path for the holiday season, but a dynamic election year is fast approaching. So thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. As usual, your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. (A quick program note: my TGIF column is taking next week off and will resume on December 1.) Here we go. 

Aaron Read / RIPR

Rhode Island’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady in October at 4.2 percent, just slightly above the national rate of 4.1 percent.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Former Rhode Island Supreme Court justice Robert G. Flanders Jr. announced Thursday his Republican campaign for the U.S. Senate seat

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Is there any hope for common ground in the polarized debate over gun violence in America? That’s one of the questions many people are asking in the aftermath of mass shootings at a Texas church and a country music festival in Las Vegas.

Rob DeBlois, principal of the Urban Collaborative Accelerated Program, has received the inaugural Murray Family Prize for Community Enrichment in recognition of his decades long commitment to Rhode Island’s most challenged, low-income and mostly immigrant students. 

Ian Donnis / RIPR

Republican gubernatorial candidate Patricia Morgan is downplaying findings from a poll released Monday by the campaign of GOP rival Cranston Mayor Allan Fung.

Asked if she views the results as credible, Morgan said, "It's not surprising. Everyone knows Allan Fung and I've only just begun. Only about half the people in the state know me, whereas 100 percent know him at this point. I've begun. I will make the case to the people of Rhode Island and I'm confident I'm going to win."

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