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RI Electoral College Casts Votes For Clinton, Kaine

Dec 19, 2016
Elisabeth Harrison / RIPR

In Rhode Island, four electors unanimously cast their votes for Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine for the presidential ticket, after they were escorted into the House Chamber to cast their ballots Monday afternoon.  

Earlier in the day, protesters demonstrated outside the Statehouse, calling for electors across the country to join forces and halt the election of Republican Donald Trump.

State Electoral College President Clay Pell said Rhode Island's electors heeded the call of the majority of voters in the Ocean State. 

“I voted for Hillary on November 8th and together with Rhode Islanders across the state, we voted overwhelmingly for Hillary," said Pell. "So for me, there was no question of voting for someone other than Hillary, because she had the will of the people.”

Pell said it’s sad Clinton will not take office, but he’s proud to be a part of the Electoral College. He said the system is imperfect, but electors must follow the rules. 

After casting votes, State Rep. Grace Diaz, one of the state's four electors, initiated a call for a bipartisan committee to investigate suspected Russian interference in the election.  Pell said this is an effort to protect the integrity of American elections in the future.

“This is not about changing the outcome," said Pell. "This is about defending the democratic will of the people. President-elect Trump is the president-elect. I believe in the peaceful transfer of power. But I also believe in making sure that he stands with the intelligence community and the American people and not with the Russian government.”

Pell said it’s not too late to investigate how Russians interfered. He said the American people have a right to know more about the government intelligence that concluded Russia swayed the elections by hacking and releasing emails of important members of the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

 

Protesters Brave The Cold With Message For Electoral College 

With chants of, "Democracy, yes! Donald Trump, no!" a small group of demonstrators ignored sub-freezing temperatures, and little chance of success, to make their views known outside the Rhode Island Statehouse Monday morning.

In a surprising revelation, U.S. Sen. Jack Reed, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee, says he first learned of suspected Russian hacking during the presidential campaign from media reports.

Ian Donnis / RIPR

The City of Providence is recruiting members for a new Muslim-American advisory board.  The mayor’s office says the initiative is aimed at protecting and serving every resident of the city regardless of race, religion, or other identifiers. 

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Attorney General Peter Kilmartin will once again try to make drunk driving penalties more stringent in the Ocean State. 

Kilmartin’s office says he has filed legislation for the past five years to try to stiffen sentencing and intends to do so again this legislative session. He wants drivers who kill someone while under the influence to face a maximum of 30, up from 15, years in prison. And drivers who injure someone while intoxicated would face increased penalties as well. That’s a provision the American Civil Liberties Union of Rhode Island has opposed in the past.

John Bender / RIPR

The state Board of Elections Wednesday night declined a request to delay the certification of votes in a high-profile legislative race. 

Courtesy Sheldon Whitehouse office

U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, a Democrat, is one of several federal lawmakers voicing concerns over Republican Donald Trump’s early preparations for the White House.

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

While Republican Donald Trump’s election as president was considered a surprise, many local races went as expected. Several municipal leaders – from both parties –kept their seats.

Mayors in three of Rhode Island’s largest cities celebrated victories by wide margins on election night. After a failed 2014 bid for Governor and despite several high profile scandals, Cranston Mayor Allan Fung beat his Democratic rival with more than 65 percent of the vote. The Republican has led Cranston since 2008.

James Baumgartner / RIPR

Organizers of an effort to recall Providence City Councilor Kevin Jackson say they’re just two hundred votes shy of the threshold for a special election. Volunteers spent Election Day collecting the signatures.

Some 35 volunteers spread out across voting precincts in Providence’s third Ward, the area Jackson represents, talking with local voters. That includes the Mt. Hope, Summit and Blackstone Neighborhoods.

Jackson was arrested and indicted this summer on five counts of embezzlement from a nonprofit he founded.

Progreso Latino

Immigrants across the nation are reacting to Donald Trump’s election victory. Rhode Island-based social service agency Progreso Latino serves immigrants around Providence and Pawtucket. Director Mario Bueno says many of his clients are still trying to digest the news of Trump’s win. But he says there’s already fear about Trump's plans to end some immigration amnesty programs.

RIPR FILE

Students around the College Hill neighborhood of Providence expressed dismay over the election of Donald Trump as the country’s 45th president. Brown University students held “self-care” gatherings on the campus green. Rhode Island School of Design faculty told students to take the Wednesday off if they wanted.

Brown student, Katherine Duckworth voted for Hillary Clinton, and said she can’t talk about the results and not cry.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Shawn Gately from Cranston thinks Trump’s win is amazing.

“I think the Trump presidency is a statement against the establishment, both Republican, Democrat, and the fourth estate, also known as the media, and saying that the rest of us as U.S. citizens are fed up with the current status quo,” said Gately.

Giovanni Cicione says he is stunned – in a good way – by this dramatic election’s presidential results.

RIPR file photo

Preliminary tallies show a “yes” vote statewide for a Tiverton casino, but the local vote remains close. In ballots cast Tuesday, 52 percent of local voters were for the casino, compared with 48 percent against.

NPR's Election Live Blog

Nov 8, 2016

Today, as results come in across the country, NPR reporters will be updating this breaking news blog in real time. The NPR Politics team, along with Member station reporters, will be providing live updates in the form of photo, video, commentary and analysis for both national and local contested races.

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