Jack Reed

New lawmakers are settling in, and Governor Raimondo is getting ready to unveil her latest budget. So the political year is starting in earnest, paving the way for the 2018 campaign season. 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.

Ian Donnis/File Photo / RIPR

Members of Rhode Island's congressional delegation say unverified claims alleging collusion between the Russian government and the campaign of President-elect Donald Trump need to be scrutinized.

"Like all Americans, Senator Reed finds these allegations extremely disturbing," said Chip Unruh, spokesman for US Senator Jack Reed. "He will wait for facts before jumping to conclusions. But this is yet another example of why an independent select committee is needed to quickly and carefully examine the evidence and ensure the American people get the truth."

Elisabeth Harrison

Rhode Island's U.S. Sen. Jack Reed said Tuesday that he has "serious concerns" about President-elect Donald Trump’s choice of Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson to be secretary of state.

In a statement, Reed said Tillerson "deserves a fair confirmation process" but said he will face tough questions from Democrats and Republicans.

"I have serious concerns about Mr. Tillerson’s nomination and it serves as a reminder of the need to quickly and thoroughly investigate Russia’s campaign to subvert our election and our country’s interests," said Reed.

RIPR FILE

An earthquake election left Republicans in control of Congress and the White House. How will Democrats respond? RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay posed the question to Sen. Jack Reed, the senior Rhode Island member of Congress.

RIPR FILE

Rhode Island’s senior Senator Jack Reed said he’s hopeful that President-elect Donald Trump will be able to work across the aisle with Democratic members of Congress. Trump won on a campaign of fiery rhetoric, leading some to wonder how well he would work with others.

Further, both the executive and legislative branches of government are now Republican led, but Reed said Democrats have been able to work within such a system before.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

All you needed to know about yesterday’s  election in Rhode Island  was on display last night at the Garden Room at Biltmore Hotel in downtown Providence, the ancestral home of Democratic Party election  bashes for generations.

RIPR FILE

During his trip, Rhode Island's senior U.S. senator will make stops in Afghanistan and Iraq. Reed’s visit comes as Iraqi forces are working to take the city of Mosul back from the Islamic State, which has controlled the city for about two years.

Reed plans to spend an unspecified amount of time in Iraq , Afghanistan and Bahrain, meeting with foreign leaders, American civilians and military personnel.

RIPR FILE

The head of the U.S. department of Housing and Urban Development, Julian Castro, makes a stop in the Ocean State today. Castro is working to raise awareness of efforts to prevent lead poisoning.

Castro will join Senator Jack Reed on a tour of several homes in Providence, where federal funds have been used to clean up lead paint. The pair will also meet with housing officials and environmental advocates to discuss efforts to reduce lead exposure, especially among children.

The doldrums of (mostly) slow news days are upon us, even with just slightly more than three weeks until Rhode Island's September 13 primary. So thanks for stopping by. As usual, you can share your tips and comments, and follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

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Bernie Sanders campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination is winding down. Rhode Island Public Radio political analyst Scott MacKay ponders what’s next for the Vermont senator and the movement he and his followers built. 

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Rhode Island will receive $3.4 million dollars to reduce lead hazards in homes. It's the seventh round of funding in more than a decade aimed at hundreds of homes with lead contamination.

Rhode Island Housing will distribute the funds to organizations that help identify homes at the highest risk for lead. These apartments or houses built were before 1978, when a ban on lead paint went into effect. And Rhode Island has a high percentage of older apartment buildings compared to the rest of the nation.

The end of the General Assembly session is coming into sight, summer beckons, and the politics beat remains frenetic. Thanks for stopping by for my weekly column. Your tips and comments are welcome, and you can follow me through the week on the twitters. Here we go.

Speaking Monday, U.S. Senator Jack Reed echoed calls for unity among Democrats in the lead up to the presidential election. But Reed stopped short of saying it's time for fellow Senator Bernie Sanders to drop out of the Democratic nominating contest. 

"That’s a decision that Senator Sanders is going to have to make," Reed said "But I think it should be clearer and clearer to him that we have to be a united party to be successful in November."

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) met with leaders working to prevent lead poisoning today in Providence. Reed is pushing legislation to better regulate toxic chemicals like lead.

The Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976 hasn’t been updated in 40 years. It’s the law that regulates harmful chemicals, including lead. And  Reed says an update is in the works. But congressional negotiations over the bill remain contentious.

Wikimedia Commons

Rhode Island’s political establishment was rebuked in last week’s presidential primaries as Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump coasted to victories. 

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