It's a new phase in Rhode Island politics, with the election this week of Gina Raimondo as governor, and Jorge Elorza as mayor of Providence. Democrats had a big sweep, while Republicans had to settle for modest gains in the RI House of Representatives. So thanks for stopping by, and feel free to drop me a line at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org and to follow me on the twitters. Here we go.
Among the grand ironies of Rhode Island politics is that Providence’s East Side, the neighborhood that vaulted Buddy Cianci into City Hall 40 years ago in his first upset victory for mayor, proved to be the impregnable roadblock to Cianci’s mayoral redemption tour yesterday.
When the returns rolled in last night, it was evident that when the East Side neighborhood votes were tallied, Democrat Jorge Elorza had rolled up such big margins that there was no way Cianci had a chance at an improbable Last Hurrah victory.
Buddy Cianci’s steep hill : Results from the Hope High School polling place on Providence’s East Side. The results show a huge landslide for Democrat Jorge Elorza. Elorza had 823 votes in the precinct, Cianci pulled a paltry 163 and Republican Dan Harrop had 31.
The same polling place carried good news for Gina Raimondo, who polled 805 to Allan Fung’s 151 and Bob Healey’s 50. Thanks to Brown super intern Emily Woolridge for harvesting these results.
With just one full day left to campaign before Election Day, Republican gubernatorial candidate Allan Fung hosted New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie this morning at a rally at his Cranston headquarters. Meanwhile, former president Bill Clinton is backing Democrat Gina Raimondo in a recorded message.
When he visits Rhode Island Friday, President Barack Obama will speak about the improving national economy and the latest Gross Domestic Product data that was released today by the federal government.
Obama is scheduled to arrive at Green State Airport this evening and stay overnight in Providence. While the White House is not disclosing where the president will stay, sources in Providence say it will be the Omni Hotel downtown, which is attached to the Rhode Island Convention Center.
As part of our Rhody Votes election coverage, we’re taking a look at the Providence mayor’s race. The Republican, Daniel Harrop, has rolled out an unorthodox campaign: its cornerstone is to put the city into
receivership, he’s used his time in debates to criticize independent Buddy Cianci, is weighing the option of dropping out of the race, and made a thousand dollar donation to his Democratic challenger Jorge Elorza.
Tomorrow is primary election day in the Ocean State. More than 700,000 of us are registered to vote. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay worries that too many won’t show up. (This is Scott's essay that airs Monday on RIPR).
Election Day was once a grand pageant. It was both spectator and participant sport. In the words of Theodore White, the noted chronicler of mid-20th century American politics, decision day was a ``great stirring.’’
One of the oldest chestnuts in close political campaigns is that the candidate who has the best last week wins.
That applies to the two elections that appear to be going down to the wire: The Democratic primaries for governor and Providence mayor.
In Providence, the contest between newcomer Jorge Elorza, a former Housing Court judge, and City Council President Michael Solomon looks like a nail-biter at this point. Solomon advantages: more money, a track record in City Hall and what ought to be a better get-out-the-vote operation.