Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas Tobin says Rhode Island voters should be the ones who decide whether to legalize same-sex marriage.
In a statement on Friday, Tobin responded to Governor Lincoln Chafee's assertion a day earlier that he would likely veto a same-sex marriage bill if it makes approval contingent on a statewide vote. Tobin calls Chafee's stance "arbitrary and undemocratic."
"One must ask, respectfully, what the Governor is afraid of?
Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian, Cranston Mayor Allan Fung and 2012 CD1 candidate Brendan Doherty are keeping their lines of communication open as the three Republicans consider their possible moves for 2014.
Ken McKay, who ran two winning campaigns for former GOP governor Don Carcieri and served as Carcieri's chief of staff for part of his two terms, is headed to a new role as political director of the Republican Governors Association.
The story was first reported Wednesday by Politico:
Paiva Weed is a canny politician; She certainly has more to gain by leaving room to maneuver on the same-sex marriage issue than by signaling an unexpected green light just a week into the new legislative session.
Governor Lincoln Chafee is throwing his support behind eliminating the master lever.
“It is time for Rhode Island to join the majority of states and eliminate the Master Lever from the ballot,” said Governor Chafee. “Any mechanism that contributes to voter confusion – and worse, voter disenfranchisement – should not be on the ballot. Its time has come.”
In a news release, the governor says eliminating the master lever will further align Rhode Island with neighboring states and provide its citizens with more open and transparent government.
Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed unveiled her new selections Tuesday afternoon for the Senate Judiciary Committee with a series of subtractions (Maryellen Goodwin, William Walaska) and additions of newly elected lawmakers (William Conley, Steve Archambault, Lou Raptakis, and Frank Lombardi). What all this means in the coming fight over same-sex marriage isn't entirely clear, although Senate leaders certainly possess the ability to kill the drive for what proponents call "marriage equality."
Peter J. Hurtgen, who led the FMCS from 2002 through 2004, says a subset of the eight parties in mediation could potentially reach some areas of agreement among themselves. But he says the complexity of the case makes it unusually fraught for mediation: