RI Democratic Party

Ah, the intra-party fellowship of the holiday season! That's one of one of our top themes this week, so 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.

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Governor Gina Raimondo on Friday joined the Women’s Caucus of the Rhode Island Democratic Party in expressing dismay over how caucus members were treated during a meeting Thursday night.

The past week has featured a blur of campaign announcements, and Rhode Island’s 2018 campaign season is just getting started. So 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 / RIPR

State Sen. Josh Miller, D-Cranston said Sunday he is a candidate for Democratic National Committeeman. Miller’s candidacy would be a challenge to former Providence Mayor Joseph Paolino Jr., who has announced he wants to fill the vacancy created by the recent death of Committeeman Frank Montanaro Sr., the former chairman of the state AFL-CIO.

RIPR File Photo

Rhode Island voters have sent another progressive Democratic woman to Smith Hill, Dawn Euer, who won a vacant Senate seat in Newport. RIPR political analyst Scott MacKay says this trend could bring debate over abortion back to the Statehouse.  


Alex Van / Creative Commons License Via Pixabay

The chairman of the Providence Republican City Committee was removed from his post yesterday after his arrest on child molestation charges.

Bill Koplitz / Creative Commons License

Rhode Island is likely to lose one of its two U.S. House seats after the 2020 U.S. Census, according to projections by reapportionment guru Kimball W. Brace, who has for many years helped Rhode Island lawmakers draw both state legislative and congressional districts.

This comes as scant surprise to Rhode Island political insiders and the local gang of 500 that follows such news. House seats are based on population, while each state gets two senators, regardless of how many people live in a state.

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

On the no-drama Rhode Island political front, the Democratic leadership of the state senate has scheduled a caucus at the Statehouse at 6 p.m. tonight to re-nominate Newport Sen. Teresa Paiva Weed as Senate President and Providence Sen. Dominick Ruggerio as majority leader. The meeting is public, according to Senate spokesman Greg Pare.

Political newcomer Jason Knight defeated veteran State Rep. Jan Malik in the District 67 Democratic primary by winning a huge victory in the two Barrington precincts, even as Knight lost the two polling places in Malik’s Warren stronghold.

RIPR FILE

Former Providence State Representative Leon Tejada  has agreed to plead guilty to federal tax and wire fraud charges.

Tejada, 50, has agreed to pay back more than $79,000 to the federal government and acknowledge that he knowingly prepared false income tax returns for clients and skimmed money from their refunds. He deposited the money into his bank account.

Cade Tompkins Projects

Lincoln Chafee’s announcement that he is seriously considering a campaign for the 2016 Democratic presidential  nomination brings to mind sports broadcaster Al Michaels’ famous call from the USA hockey team’s upset victory over the USSR in the 1980 winter Olympics: Do you Believe in Miracles?

That’s pretty much what is would take for Chafee to move into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue in January 2017.

One of the highlights of the spring political calendar is Sen. Jack Reed’s Spring Breakfast . Held every year at Rhodes-on-the-Pawtuxet in Reed’s hometown of Cranston, this family-friendly  event is back for its 26th straight year. Reed's breakfast usually draws a throng of 1,000 or more.

This year’s edition is scheduled for April 19 from 10 a.m. until noon, according to the R.I. Democratic Party’s web site. Individual tickets are $25 and can be purchased by calling 401-277-2014. Reservations can be made at Julie@JackReed2014.com

Eighty years ago, Rhode Island Democrats took over state government with one fell swoop in a coup that became known as the Bloodless Revolution. The event has set the template for Rhode Island politics ever since.

In just 14 minutes at the State House on New Year’s Day, 1935, the Democrats took control of the General Assembly, replaced the entire Rhode Island Supreme Court,  consigned to the dustbin of history more than 80 boards and commissions and fired Republican appointees who had run state government forever.

Latest talk among Democratic operatives: Optimism about Elorza in Providence, worry about Raimondo in governor's race. If she loses there will be lots of second-guessing her general election campaign.

The Rhode Island gubernatorial election between Democrat Gina Raimondo and Republican Allan Fung has become much closer than anyone thought even a month ago. Raimondo’s lackluster general election campaign, which followed a very well done primary effort, is surely part of her problem.

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