Residents and merchants in the East Bay are sharply opposing tolls on the Sakonnet River Bridge. Local lawmakers have joined them in asserting the tolls will hurt the economy in communities near the bridge.
Gov. Lincoln Chafee’s switch to the Democratic Party has cost him one key supporter. Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian, a longtime Chafee friend and backer, said he will not support the governor in his re-election bid.
“He’s been a lifelong friend so I’ll still be his friend but we’ll have to see what happens politically as we move forward,” said Avedisian. “I’m a Republican and I would expect to be supporting the Republican candidate.”
The start of June has done nothing, naturally, to stop the breakneck flow of news in the Land of The Gift That Keeps on Giving. So welcome back to my weekly column. You can reach me at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) com, and (please) follow me on Twitter. Let's head in.
Governor Lincoln Chafee is applauding the contract extension granted to state Education Commissioner Deborah Gist on Thursday. But the state’s largest teachers’ union remains upset about the decision to keep Gist as commissioner.
The state Board of Education voted, 7 to 3, to continue Gist’s contract for another two years. In a statement, Governor Chafee says he’s pleased by the agreement. The governor says he looks forward to continuing what he calls a productive and positive relationship with Gist.
Robert A. Walsh Jr., executive director of the National Education Association Rhode Island, joins the Roundtable this week to discuss state Education Commissioner Deborah Gist; conflicting views on economic development; the debate over defaulting on bonds for 38 Studios; and Council 94's hiring of a prominent critic of state Treasurer Gina Raimondo.
Robert Walsh, executive director of the National Education Association Rhode Island, joins Bonus Q+A for a discussion of pensions, President Obama, public education, and the Democratic field in next year's race for governor.
One of Rhode Island's most prominent Democratic union leaders, Robert A. Walsh Jr., says he now regrets backing Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton in 2008:
"I was an early and vocal supporter of President Obama's first bid for [presidential] office, and in hindsight, I probably should have been an early and vocal supporter of Hillary Clinton. So for all my friends who have chastised me for that, this is an admission that I was wrong on that case -- on the experience issue."
While Lincoln Chafee's move to become a Democrat might be utterly unsurprising to some, the governor's move nonetheless scrambled the landscape for what already looked like a riveting election fight next year. That's why Chafee leads my weekly column. Thanks for stopping by. Feel free to drop me a line at idonnis (at) ripr (and) org and to follow me on Twitter. Let's go: