Clay Pell

Ian Donnis / RIPR

The 5 major candidates for governor discussed a range of issues during two separate debates Wednesday). The forums sponsored by Rhode Island Public Radio and Channel 10 came just six days before the statewide primary September 9th.

With less than a week to go until the primary election, the candidate hit on familiar themes while making a late push for votes.

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.

If the Rhode Island political news is coming this hot and heavy, what's it going to be like next week? The September 9 primary witching hour is steadily approach, so welcome back for another edition of my Friday column. Your tips and thoughts are always welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org, and the land of 140-character notes awaits you via the twitters. Here we go.

Providence Business News Editor Mark Murphy joins Rhode Island Public Radio's Dave Fallon for our weekly business segment The Bottom Line.

This week news director Catherine Welch and Mark talk with Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay. They discuss what Gov. Lincoln Chafee has hit and missed to boost the state’s economy and what the next governor will need to do to lift the state out of its economic doldrums.

When to Listen

You can hear The Bottom Line each Friday at 5:50pm.

As the clock ticks in the Democratic primary election for governor, it is becoming apparent that Providence Mayor Angel Taveras is caught in a left-right pincer movement between newcomer Clay Pell and State General Treasurer Gina Raimondo.

Raimondo tacks right, Pell to the left and Taveras is stuck in the middle, which is not always a great place to be in a primary historically dominated by the liberal, progressive side of the party. The other challenge for Taveras, who has pretty clearly become the underdog, is that he is not nearly as well financed as either Pell or Raimondo.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

The three major Democratic candidates for governor each say improving Rhode Island’s economy would be their top focus if they win election in November.

The trio squared off during a televised debate Tuesday sponsored by Channel 12 and the Providence Journal.

Clay Pell, Gina Raimondo, and Angel Taveras generally stuck with familiar themes during the hour-long debate. Pell said he’s the progressive candidate, Taveras called himself the candidate of working families, and Raimondo said the pension overhaul she spearheaded in 2011 shows her ability to get results.

With two weeks until election day, Democrats Clay Pell,  Angel Taveras and Gina Raimondo stuck to familiar campaign themes and solidifying support in a spirited televised debate this evening that was long on rhetorical flourishes but short on major policy differences.

With just over two weeks until the September 9 primary, Democrat Gina Raimondo and her supporters used a flood-the-zone approach Monday in responding to rival Angel Taveras's charge that Raimondo "works for Wall Street." 

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.

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.

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.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

A new coalition of public and private unions, banding together under the name Working Families for Angel, on Monday announced their support for Angel Taveras' gubernatorial campaign.

Working Families for Angel says it plans to communicate with more than 16,000 union households through door-knocking, electronic communications and other means.

There's already hint of fall in the air as the political calendar inexorably moves toward Rhode Island's September 9 primary. So thanks for stopping by for my Friday column, and, as always, feel free to send your tips and thoughts my way, and to follow me on the twitters. Here we go.

Thanks for stopping by to welcome TGIF back from its summer vacation. Not much happened while we were gone, other than the sale of the ProJo, David Caprio's resignation as Democratic Party chairman, and the remaking of the Red Sox, among other things. Yet the beat goes on, so feel free to share your tips and thoughts via idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org and to follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

In a sign that Angel Taveras' gubernatorial campaign is concerned about the threat posed by rival Democrat Clay Pell, Taveras' campaign is using a new television ad to attack Pell's experience, voting record, and Rhode Island credentials.

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