We remain stuck in the pit of winter, judging by the forecast for the latest in a string of storms. Yet things are already percolating for our next massive political season, so let's get to it. As always, your thoughts, tips, and reactions are welcome at idonnis (at) ripr (dot) org.
Pablo Rodriguez joins the panel this week as we discuss the 10th anniversary of the Station fire disaster; why Rhode Island's Democratic congressman are helping independent Governor Lincoln Chafee stage a DC fundraiser; whether it's appropriate for Treasurer Gina Raimondo to hire a campaign operative as her chief of staff; and the local impact of the latest federal budget showdown.
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.
Just about every good government group in Rhode Island is pushing for an end to the so-called master lever option on state ballots. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay explains why this is not a panacea for what ails our state’s political culture.
It has become an article of faith in Rhode Island among the self-styled government reform groups, most statewide elected politicians and the chattering pundit classes that our state needs to get rid of that relic of urban machine politics, the master lever.
In the latest setback for the state Economic Development Corporation, Governor Lincoln Chafee's choice to lead the agency, William J. Parsons, has asked that his nomination we withdrawn due to a " recent serious health issue." Chafee has accepted the request by Parson, whose tenure with the EDC goes almost to the agency's inception.
It is with a sublime sense of irony that some of us are watching the latest State House utterances about taxes, especially the chatter by state Rep. Jan Malik, D-Warren about eliminating the state sales tax.
``Our sales tax is killing small businesses, especially in border communities,’’ says Malik. Now, there is of course, no conflict with his interest. Our good Warren rep runs a liquor store (full disclosure: yours truly and his better 75 percent shop there) off Route 136 that kisses the Massachusetts border.