Jack Reed

Welcome back to my weekly column. Spring is starting to pop, and there's never a shortage of news hereabouts, so let's get to it. As always, your thoughts and tips are welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org.

In the flurry of  commentary about the 10-year anniversary of the U.S. intervention in Iraq, the role of one Rhode Island political figure who did the right thing has not received much attention from the Rhode Island media.

That would be then-Republican Sen. Linc  Chafee’s lonely vote against President Bush’s rush to war under the most dubious of rationales. Chafee was the only Republican senator who voted against the ill-fated Iraq War that Bush pushed under the false evidence that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction.

Monday, March18, 2013

Mar 18, 2013

Senator Jack Reed wants to see Liberian refugees put on the path to US citizenship.  State officials will consider reinstating bus service in Tiverton.   These stories and more on the RIPR Morning News Podcast.

Reprieve for Liberian refugees

Mar 18, 2013
US Senator Jack Reed from Rhode Island
courtesy of Jack Reed

Rhode Island’s large Liberian community got some good news over the weekend. President Barack Obama announced that he is extending their stay an additional 18 months.  But Senator Jack Reed thinks they deserve better.

Welcome back to my weekly column. As always, your tips and thoughts are welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org. Let's get to the list.

Barring a Republican takeover of the US Senate, Senator Jack Reed is poised to take over the chairmanship in 2015 of the Senate Armed Services Committee. That's due to just-announced plans by the current chair, Senator Carl Levin of Michigan, to not seek re-election next year.

Sen. Reed bill will Hike Minimum Wage

Mar 6, 2013

Rhode Island Senator Jack Reed is supporting a bill that would increase the federal minimum wage over the next three years.

The federal minimum wage is currently $7.25.  The so-called “Federal Wage Act” would increase that wage by 95 cents annually until it reaches $10.10 by 2015.

However the buying power of minimum wage has decreased significantly, and the new boost may not be enough in Rhode Island, says Kate Brewster, the executive director of The Economic Progress Institute.

US Senator Jack Reed from Rhode Island
courtesy of Jack Reed

Senator Jack Reed says Chuck Hagel  will provide outstanding leadership heading up the Pentagon. Reed says this is a critical moment for the US with national security threats and a continuing presence in Afghanistan.

The informal launch of Senator Jack Reed's campaign for his fourth term is set to start  Sunday evening with a packed fundraiser at the Providence Biltmore.

Rhode Islanders to Receive Food Aid for Storm Losses

Feb 21, 2013

Help is coming to Rhode Island residents who receive food assistance, or SNAP, benefits and lost food supplies during the recent storm power outages. The U.S. Department of Agriculture will provide up to $2.1 million dollars to assist communities hit hardest by the storm.

Conservation Group Ranks RI Delegation "Green"

Feb 21, 2013

Rhode Island’s entire congressional delegation gets top scores in the League of Conservation Voters’ 2012 National Environmental Scorecard. The ranking is based on 35 votes taken by the House and 14 by the Senate.
Both Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse scored 100 percent.  Congressmen David Cicilline and Jim Langevin scored 94 percent.   The average Senate score is 56 percent. The average House score is 42 percent.

With a wave of departures in the US Senate, Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse are positioned to expand their seniority -- a potent coin of the realm in Congress.

Aaron Blake reports at The Fix on the turnover:

Currently, 24 senators have called it quits between 2010 and today — just three less than the previous high of 27 retirements between 1992 and 1996.

If yesterday’s dress rehearsal is any indication, this year’s Providence Newspaper Guild Follies will be  the funniest in years!

The Follies, of course, is the original spoof in song, skit and stand-up comedy of all things Rhode Island, especially our state’s politicians. This year, among the stars will be Linc, Gina, Angel, Jack, Jim, Sheldon, Elizabeth and David!!

Governor Lincoln Chafee tells anyone who will listen that he is running for reelection in 2014, despite poll numbers that show him lagging behind other aspirants, including Providence Mayor Angel Taveras and General Treasurer Gina Raimondo. Well, Chafee, an independent is getting back into the fund-raising game with a big-ticket fund-raiser in Washington D.C. on Feb. 25, when Chafee is scheduled to be in the nation’s capitol for the winter meeting of the National Governors Association.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Feb 15, 2013

The RI EDC needs to find a new leader.  Brown University raises its tuition.   These stories and more on the RIPR Morning News Podcast.

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