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.

Tax Day is behind us, and the final stretch of the legislative session is looming. 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.

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

A path breaking Harvard University Law School professor and former clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall will keynote the 2017 Commencement exercises at Roger Williams Law School on May 19th at 1 p.m. at the RWU Athletic Field on the Bristol campus at One Old Ferry Road.

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The Providence to Newport Ferry is coming back with increased service this summer.

The Rhode Island Commerce Corporation and the state Department of Transportation announced today the return of the ferry service, which drew thousands last summer.

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Boston’s big hospital system –Partners HealthCare—is acquiring Care New England, Rhode Island’s second largest hospital chain. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says this deal raises many questions about the quality and price of health care in the Ocean State.

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Oscar-winning actor Robert De Niro and five others will receive honorary degrees at Brown University’s 249th Commencement on Sunday, May 28th in Providence.

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Update II: Jack Khorey, who spent close to a half-century on Fountain Street as a reporter and editor, is also taking the buyout. He has most recently served as city editor.

Update: John Kostrzewa, the Providence Journal's assistant managing editor for business, commerce and consumer issues, is taking the latest buyout offered by GateHouse Media, management, RIPR has learned.

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In a letter to doctors, Lifespan CEO Dr. Timothy J. Babineau has criticized the proposed merger of Boston-based Partner HealthCare and Lifespan’s chief Rhode Island competition, Care New England.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

Rhode Island Public Radio led the pack at the 29th annual Metcalf Awards for journalistic excellence in reporting matters of diversity in ways that inspire, engage and empower. The awards are organized and presented by Rhode Island for Community & Justice (RIJC).

RIPR File Photo

Two more candidates have joined the race to fill the state Senate seat vacated by former Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed.

Former Gov. Lincoln Chafee has joined the opposition to Invenergy's controversial energy plant proposal in Burrillville.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

Rhode Island’s junior senator, Sheldon Whitehouse, has compiled almost $2 million in his campaign account ahead of a re-election challenge next year.

Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

Debate rages in Rhode Island over the Pawtucket Red Sox stadium issue. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says this is a good time for all involved to take a deep breath.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

With a looming change in the executive editor's post at The Providence Journal, the paper's publisher warned Thursday that layoffs may result if a new buyout offer doesn't attract enough participation.

Reporter John Hill, president of the Providence Newspaper Guild, said ProJo Publisher Janet Hasson shared the news during a staff meeting in which executive editor Dave Butler's departure was announced.

Hill said some well-known reporters could be among those taking the latest buyout. "I've been hearing a lot of interest from the [Guild] membership," he said.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

A new poll by Bryant University's Hassenfeld Institute for Public Leadership shows strong backing for Governor Gina Raimondo's proposal to offer two years of free college tuition to Rhode Islanders, and softer support for House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello's move to phaseout the car tax over five years.

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