Only in New England Could a Self-Described Moderate Hope to Get Away with Doing Public Appearances Only in Front of Ideologically Progressive Groups

According to Katherine Gregg, who describes herself as a reporter for a newspaper calling itself the Providence Journal(*), soon-to-be-announced Rhode Island gubernatorial candidate Lincoln Chafee has not decided whether or not he will participate in the January 8 candidates forum to be held by the Rhode Island Voter Coalition

Asked if he intended to participate in the first [gubernatorial] candidates forum of the campaign season on Jan. 8, Chafee said he believes candidates should have “the courage to stand up and face questions,” but before committing to this particular event –– which is to be moderated by the Rhode Island chairman of Pat Buchanan’s 2000 campaign for president –– he wants to know more about the group sponsoring it.
Democratic Party candidates Frank Caprio and Patrick Lynch have already confirmed their appearances at the RIVC event.
Chafee, you should recall, made an appearance at a “Drinking Liberally” event earlier this year. (Caprio and Lynch have also made Drinking Liberally appearances). Candidate Chafee should explain to Rhode Island voters what the vetting criteria are that the Rhode Island Voter Coalition doesn’t obviously meet, that Drinking Liberally organizers do.
Also, if former Senator Chafee or any of his aides would like to see for themselves what happens at a Rhode Island Voter Coalition event (it’s kind of like a “Drinking Liberally”, but without an audience overwhelmingly composed of liberals and beyond [and there may also be some differences in the availability of alcohol {my apologies to the RIVC folks, if I just depressed your turnout a bit}]), video coverage of the October 16 Rhode Island Voter Coalition forum, recorded by Anchor Rising, is available here, here, here and here.
(*)This non-standard construction is being used to help maintain a consistent flow with the reporting on the Rhode Island Voter Coalition that appeared in yesterday’s Political Scene column in the Projo
Aides to the two Democratic officeholders have confirmed their candidate’s plans to take part in the “Meet the Candidates Forum” that a group calling itself the Rhode Island Voter Coalition has scheduled for 7 p.m., Jan. 8, at the Crowne Plaza in Warwick.
Organizer Steve Wright, who describes himself as a 42-year-old construction worker from Coventry, said the candidates will each get a chance to speak. They will also be given an equal amount of time to answer questions posed to them by the moderator, Mark Berardo, the Rhode Island chairman of Pat Buchanan’s Reform Party campaign for president in 2000.

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rhody
rhody
11 years ago

If I’m advising Linc, I tell him to do it. Force Laffey’s hand, and put the “unwilling to debate” talk to bed pronto.

steadman
steadman
11 years ago

Why would chafee show up to a serious event? look at any review/comment about his appearance at drinking liberally. The former senator should surround himself with more than yes men and people afraid to tell him how it really is. The train station near the airport cannot fuel the economic recovery of this state, and mentioning it a million times does not make it valid. Its sad how illprepared and lacking in common sense the former senator is. Serioulsy, how can anyone defend or believe this man is ready to lead our state?

George
George
11 years ago

Trust me rhody, the only thing better than calling out Chafee for avoiding debate, is debating Chafee.

gina
gina
11 years ago

I am one of the organizer of the RIVC events and I would like to clarify that we will be using the same format as we did in Coventry and Westerly. The VOTERS will be asking the questions, not our moderator. He will simply be there to keep track of time and to allow for follow questions when appropriate.
All the candidates and Ms. Greg should have the forum rules. If they do not, we will gladly resend them. Mr. Chaffee and Mr. Laffey were both invited several weeks ago at the same time we invited Mr. Caprio, Mr. Lynch, and Mr. Smith.
As for our group, we are just a couple of parents that decided we were going to act. We decided we were no longer going to let the political process happen around us, we want to be part of it and we want to inspire our fellow citizens to get out and get involved.

mikeinri
11 years ago

The article quotes Chafee’s press release: “He [Chafee] aims to bring his unquestioned integrity, proven record of bringing people together, and positive vision to the State House, charting a New Way Forward for Rhode Island.” Apparently he wants to bring everyone together except conservatives, especially those who may have supported Buchanan. Pathetic.

Phil
Phil
11 years ago

Carroll
While your post mostly reports what The Providence Journal has already reported, The title of your piece suggests a bias by you against Chaffee.
You already decided that he will not attend the event denying the chance for members of non-Ideologically Progressive Groups to ask him questions. Just good ol’ voters not getting a chance to participate… sort of like those who may be denied a chance to vote in the upcoming Republican primary election as unaffilated voters.
————————————————————————
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – The Rhode Island Republican Party is
considering a plan to close its primary so only registered
Republicans could vote in it.
ABC6.com
———————————————————————
I’d say that from a participation in political events perpective not being able to vote for a candidate for political office trumps not being able to question one.

rhody
rhody
11 years ago

Dumb move by the GOP to try closing its primary. The Demccrats would be equally stupid to try it.
Think of the negative ads that move would give birth to…

MadMom
MadMom
11 years ago

Mmmm, yeah, rhody, I can just imagine those ads.
“Are you a union hack? Are you basking in the glow of the status quo of high unemployment and high taxes paired with lousy services? Well this’ll get your knickers in a twist: the GOP won’t let you choose their candidate! Outraged? Vote Lynch (or Caprio or Chafee) for Governor. Let’s keep RI on the road to bankruptcy.”

Phil
Phil
11 years ago

Andrew
I know of none.

oscar
oscar
11 years ago

According to Katherine Gregg, who describes herself a reporter. or Brit
“fair and balanced” Hume calling himself
a reporter???
for a newspaper calling itself the Providence Journal(*),or Fox News
calling itself a NEWS CHANEL??

Monique
Editor
11 years ago

“Are you basking in the glow of the status quo of high unemployment and high taxes paired with lousy services? Well this’ll get your knickers in a twist: the GOP won’t let you choose their candidate! Outraged? Vote Lynch (or Caprio or Chafee) for Governor. Let’s keep RI on the road to bankruptcy.””
Excellent ad! Where do I send my check to run that baby??

Monique
Editor
11 years ago

“Candidate Chafee should explain to Rhode Island voters what the vetting criteria are that the Rhode Island Voter Coalition doesn’t obviously meet, that Drinking Liberally organizers do.”
Actually, in view of developments to the participant list late today, any statewide candidate who does not attend the RIVC event needs to explain this. Is it as simple as wishing to appear only at events where there is a sympathetic audience and an excellent prospect that no substantive/real life questions will be asked?

CC
CC
11 years ago

All candidates have now pulled out of this “forum”, proving it to be a complete sham, so why is this even still an issue?

rhody
rhody
11 years ago

Funny, I recall not long ago plenty of conservatives wanted to dive into the Democratic primary to put Caprio over because they felt he’d be the stronger candidate against Chafee.
Guys, Whitehouse had a Democratic opponent in the ’06 primary. You could’ve stopped him right there, too.

Phil
Phil
11 years ago

I want the right to vote as I please in every statewide primary election and general election. As an independent voter I like the option of voting for whoever I wish on election day. There is now a way for that to occur as an independent voter can vote for who they wish and then unaffliate and remain independent. Why change that option?

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
11 years ago

Phil is right.I have the same problem as an independent.
In some instances in this state the primary IS the election.Shades of the old South.

David S
David S
11 years ago

“So far, all that’s been proven is that at this stage of the campaign is that Rhode Island’s Democratic and independent candidates are only willing to appear in public issues forums put on by the ideological left.” Andrew so wrote. Let’s put the shoe on the other foot – you want a conservative republican candidate to go before a rigged Democrat event? Oh ! That’s right! In your mind that includes every possible MSM venue.
The RIVC is a Republican outfit. I have more respect, much more, for a Will Ricci, who wears the Republican cloth proudly than the non- partisan Steve Wrights ( Tea Party, We The People) who hide in some nebulous non-identity bullshit social network planet. RIVC=Tea Party= WE The People= RIRA=GOP. The real reason the Dems dropped out is they were informed that this was a Republican event AND because it would be a monumental waste of time.

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
11 years ago

David S-let’s discuss “balanced” panels,why don’t we?
There was a panel on immigration reform at Brown University recently-it consisted of Scott Avedisian(rather neutral on the subject);Robert Corrente,former US Attorney(pro-enforcement) and then:Rep.David Segal;former Judge Roberto Gonzalez;Rev.Donald Anderson;Sen.Juan Pichardo.Rep.Grace Diaz was expected but didn’t attend.
If not for the good moderation by Prof.Wendy Schiller,and the opportunity for audience members such as myself and Terry Gorman among others to ask questions/make comments at some length,it would have been almost one-sided.The panel as initially constituted was a stacked deck in favor of illegal aliens.
Okay,these were not candidtes per se,but it was definitely supposed to be an open political forum with differing viewpoints.

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