Nothing from Nothing Leaves Nothing

Did you hear about the controversy surrounding the Republican candidate for Lt. Governor pulling out in favor of an independent?
Crickets.
That’s the response I’ve gotten from an informal survey of non-political types. That about says it all, doesn’t it?
So, while in-the-know political observers (including us) continue to entertain ourselves with this tempest in a teapot regarding the GOP Lt. Governor race, regular Rhode Islanders yawn and think about the *New Fall Lineup* emerging on their TV sets.
And as we shake our heads at the opportunity the RI GOP has provided to perpetual wannabe political players Chris Young, his multi-office candidate fiance Kara Russo and (now) Keven McKenna, regular Rhode Islanders will be thinking about how they’re going to handle the logistics of getting 3 kids to 5 events on one night while Mom is working late and Dad has to fill in (uh oh!).
Come November, when the 20-25% of Rhode Islanders get around to voting, they may or may not notice that the GOP has a candidate for Lt. Governor (at least those that don’t automatically “pull” the Democratic Mastah Levah…by completing the arrow). And the 35% who always vote against the Democrat will get behind Bob Healey (or the other Bob) and the rest will vote for the status quo.
Thus, all the air, ink and pixels consumed, spilled or, um, pixelated regarding this issue over the last few days will result in….nothing. Well, at least it kept us entertained.

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John
John
11 years ago

Never seen a better description of reality. Even as an insider and GOP registrant, I am no more than amused by the stupidity of the move.
The truth is that the GA controls what is allowed to be considered as a constitutional amendment. I don’t see what will EVER motivate them to move in that direction, so the Bob Healey effort, should it succeed, be nothing more than an amusing distraction from the annual January to June folly we call the next session.
The proper solution is to link the two positions to assure succession and have the Lt. Governor serve as part of the Governor’s staff in whatever capacity they see most apprpriate to the times.
I’ll be spending my energy getting Loughlin elected. The Lt. Governor race isn’t worth the cost of the smudge of ink to cast a ballot.

Patrick
Patrick
11 years ago

Why is Venturini in this race? I just googled him, found his wikipedia page and there is only a mention that he’s running. No link to any political web site or any information about his campaign. Again, if that Bob really cares about what’s best for the state, and he’s serious, he’d also drop out and let all the votes go to Bob Healey.
Healey really should also ramp up an anti-straight ticket lever, or he could get steamrolled. In the last Gubernatorial election, more than 70,000 straight ticket Democrat votes were cast (about 16,000 Republican). That’s a lot of votes for Healey to overcome. Granted there was a lot more pro-Democrat sentiment last time compared to now.

George
George
11 years ago

What has me most upset about this is that Republicans are not outraged. This is a stunt that should be beneath them, expecially as they attempt (albeit feabily) to establish themselves as the “opposition”, “alternative” to the same-ole, same-ole dems.
Last time I looked at campaign finance reports, Heidi Rogers raised zero, spent zero. So, her withdrawal looks clearly pre-meditated to me!
I think the GOP will make an impact across the country in November. But I think Rhode Island Republicans will again find themselves victims of another weak leadership regime.
Looks like we need to throw some bums out before we’re ever going to be able to “THROW THE BUMS OUT”. But I still have little confidence that very much will change.

George
George
11 years ago

What has me most upset about this is that Republicans are not outraged. This is a stunt that should be beneath them, expecially as they attempt (albeit feabily) to establish themselves as the “opposition”, “alternative” to the same-ole, same-ole dems.
Last time I looked at campaign finance reports, Heidi Rogers raised zero, spent zero. So, her withdrawal looks clearly pre-meditated to me!
I think the GOP will make an impact across the country in November. But I think Rhode Island Republicans will again find themselves victims of another weak leadership regime.
Looks like we need to throw some bums out before we’re ever going to be able to “THROW THE BUMS OUT”. But I still have little confidence that very much will change.

helen
helen
11 years ago

Marc,you are usually so sharp.
Do you really believe that rendering meaningless the votes of the thousands of people who voted in that primary race is okay?
Marc,my vote is more important than whatever the agenda is of any political candidate or political party.
It is my franchise in our government,which was founded on the consent of the governed.
I didn’t consent to what happened in this primary.
The callous disregard of the rights of the voters in this matter is very alarming.
I believe my voting right was violated and you are trivializing that by calling it a tempest in a teapot.
To reiterate,my vote supercedes the agenda of any candidate or political pary.

Patrick
Patrick
11 years ago

Helen, you are grossly missing Marc’s point. His point isn’t anywhere close to what you’re saying. He isn’t referring to people like you and me who actually pay attention to politics, he’s referring to the majority of people who are pretty mindless when they walk into the voting booth and have no idea who most of the names on there are, never mind know the stories behind them or will know that Rogers dropped out to support Healey.
And that’s a shame.

helen
helen
11 years ago

Hi Patrick,
Are you Marc’s spokesman?
Well,I don’t know what the majority of people think,and I don’t know how you could either.
All I know is that I wasn’t voting for Bob Healy in the primary. I intended to vote for the Republican winner in the general election and that is not Bob Healy.

Patrick
Patrick
11 years ago

Hi Pleasant Helen-
No, I am not Marc’s spokesman and I don’t know what the majority of people are thinking, but I am experienced enough to know that the majority of voters are clueless.
And what you posted to is called a DISCUSSION forum. If you want to have a one-way conversation on a topic, then why did you even bother posting?

helen
helen
11 years ago

So you think I don’t “understand”?
Here’s a quote from Marc’s post:
“… , while in-the-know political observers (including us) continue to entertain ourselves with this tempest in a teapot regarding the GOP Lt. Governor race,”
I didn’t misunderstand. My disenfranchisement was “entertainement.”
I just wasn’t “in the know”. Ya know?
Marc,you are better than this.

Andrew
Editor
11 years ago

Helen,
You weren’t disenfranchised (even if we overlook the various problems with applying the whole “disenfranchisement” concept to a primary).
You voted in a primary election. The candidate who got the most votes was declared the winner. That you don’t like what a candidate has done with the position that they’ve won (whether it’s a good idea or not) doesn’t mean that there was anything improper about the election itself.

helen
helen
11 years ago

Andrew,it was an election subject to state laws. My vote was rendered meaningless.

Mario
Mario
11 years ago

I voted in the Republican primary, and I don’t feel like my vote was rendered meaningless at all. In fact, since I was consciously voting against Kara Russo, she’s the one seeking to nullify my vote.

Andrew
Editor
11 years ago

Helen,
“Subject to state laws” doesn’t fly here. If that’s the standard, then you were disenfranchised from the Democratic primary. It’s very difficult to see where the concept of “disenfranchisement” can be applied to a a primary election.
And as Mario points out, your vote wasn’t rendered meaningless, you just voted for a candidate who did something different with the nomination than you would have preferred. By that logic, Elizabeth Dennigan’s voters were disenfranchised when she resigned her seat to run for U.S Rep. There is no “right” to have a particular person on a ballot in an election that you vote in.

Marc Comtois
11 years ago

Hi Helen, First, I’d assume that if you’re reading Anchor Rising, you’re “in the know” :), so Patrick’s correct. My point wasn’t to trivialize but to point out what I’d observed. Most people don’t care about what’s going on with the Lt. Gov. race.
It seems like you are ready to be offended, here, too. You cherry-picked my “entertain ourselves” sentence but ignored the following one: “we shake our heads at the opportunity the RI GOP has provided to perpetual wannabe political players”. In other words, the RI GOP just looks confused (again) and has done its part to turn this into a sideshow.
So I agree with you that this is a mess and I understand why you feel like you were played by an inside game. However, I wouldn’t go so far as to say you were disenfranchised as others have explained. In fact, like Mario, I voted against one candidate in the primary, not for another.
Finally, no matter which of the recent polls you look it, it sure appears as if I was on the right track.

Patrick
Patrick
11 years ago

And if we’re concerned about votes being rendered meaningless, then really any vote for a non-winning candidate was “meaningless”. What did it achieve? Nothing.

George
George
11 years ago

Andrew says: “That you don’t like what a candidate has done with the position that they’ve won (whether it’s a good idea or not) doesn’t mean that there was anything improper about the election itself.”
Except that it was dishonnest. Except that it was a planned deception. There isn’t conspiracy theory. There’s conspiracy! Heidi Rogers ran for Lt. Governor in the primary, and the RIGOP endorsed her, SO THAT there would be no Republican candidate in the General Election. It was pre-meditated. It was deliberate. Look at her campaign finance reports, she raised no money, she spent no money. She NEVER intended to run in the General Election. To gather signatures and put your name on the ballot with those intentions is a LIE. And the last thing we need is more LIARS. Republicans in this state should be outraged, period!

rhody
rhody
11 years ago

This happens all the time. You vote for a candidate in the primary because they tacked one way, then they tack another way in the general and you kick yourself for voting for that system.
I might have had a little more sympathy for Russo’s position if she wasn’t trying to game the system herself by running for two offices. What if she got elected to both? If you voted for Loughlin for Congress and her for lt. gov., and she took the Congressional seat instead, wouldn’t you feel just as disenfranchised?

Scott Bill Hirst
Scott Bill Hirst
11 years ago

Hi!
What was not mentioned this withdrawal and the seeds existed before the deadline of her withdrawing with a replacement named or extremely close to the deadline.
The State GOP Chairman who had the power to name a replacement clearly knew of this in advance of Ms. Rogers formal withdrawal.
Bob Healey is NOT the Republican candidate for Lt. Governor because his own action, “Gio” Cicione’s action, or action of the Rhode Island Republican State Central Committee.
I still would like to know how Ms. Rogers decided to run for Lt. Governor and whether she was recruited to block Bob Tingle who was interviewed by the nominating committee of the R.I. State GOP.
I speak only for myself.
Regards,
Scott Bill Hirst
Member from Hopkinton, R.I., Republican State Central Committee

Patrick
Patrick
11 years ago

“I still would like to know how Ms. Rogers decided to run for Lt. Governor and whether she was recruited to block Bob Tingle who was interviewed by the nominating committee of the R.I. State GOP.”
How would Rogers running block Tingle? Tingle could have run for the post. Rogers didn’t block Russo from running so why would Tingle be blocked?

helen
helen
11 years ago

Andrew,I was deceived because I took that election at face value. I watched the debate on WPRO. Heidi Rogers did not indicate that she did not intend to go all the way with it.
Marc,it isn’t that I’m ready to be offended. It’s the dismissive attitude towards the voters who voted in good faith in the primary without knowing that there were meetings between Bob Healey and the Republican Party. Those voters,including me,are getting steamrolled.
When I have read your posts,you have impressed me as sensible,fair person. It’s been said that this is the triumph of priciple over party.
What principle is being upheld in this situation? The Cool Moose party platform says that the will of the people is most important.
Yet,the will of the people was expressed in the primary,and when the people’s will was ignored by the winner of the primary,there was no objection from Bob Healey and the Republicans are closing ranks over it.
When I stand up for my vote,I’m standing up for your vote too,you know.
Right now I’m in the middle of cooking supper,so I might have missed answering a couple of people. I’ll try to get back later.

Marc
11 years ago

Helen, I applaud your idealism. unfortunately, politics doesn’t operate in an ideal world. I didn’t know about the Healey/GOP meeting, deal (whatever), either and I can understand why you feel “steamrolled.” I can’t take you to task for caring more about this than most people (including myself). We need people like you to stay involved and provide a less cynical perspective every now and then. I know your discouraged, but whatever you do, don’t vote for the status quo!

BobN
BobN
11 years ago

Helen, surely if you’re politically aware enough to read Anchor Rising, you should know that primaries are not the election, nor are they public matters. Primaries are party functions over which the state has imposed itself.
And if you read this blog, you should not be so naive as to think that Kara Russo was a legitimate candidate of the Republican party, whom the party trusted to carry its flag in the general election. She and her puppet-master Chris Young ginned this up to hijack the party’s process. Heidi Rogers graciously “took one for the team” and ran against her to prevent this travesty.
If you were sufficiently politically aware to have attended the party’s convention in June, you would have known that the RIGOP and Bob Healey are completely aligned in our view of the LG office under our present train-wreck of a state constitution.
The party and Heidi used a political strategy to defend the party against an attack by an unprincipled opportunist. Sometimes such things have to be done.
That’s life.

Scott Bill Hirst
Scott Bill Hirst
11 years ago

Hi!
This is in response to Patrick.
The possibility of Heidi Rogers blocking Bob Tingle is obvious. Bob Tingle made his interest known to the state GOP about running for Lt. Governor.Bob Tingle went through by conference call as he was in Ohio an interview by the nominating committee by the state GOP. Ms. Rogers was interviewed in person. I learned a woman also put her name in, but did not have a name.
Ms. Rogers held herself out as a candidate for Lt. Governor and was running to work with the Governor and the person she was supporting in the GOP primary John Robitaille.
FYI:I collected nomination paper signatures and signed for for Bob Tingle, Bob Healey, and the endorsed 2ND District “master” nomination paper of the state GOP that included Heidi Rogers.
Regards,
Scott Bill Hirst

Scott Bill Hirst
Scott Bill Hirst
11 years ago

Hi again,
Five things need to be remembered:
1. Gio Cicione did not name a relacement whther it was Kara Russo or anyone else which he had power to do after Heidi Rogers withdrew.
2.Bob Healey did NOT want to run as a official Republican candidate but still wanted GOP support. He could NOT be endorsed by the state committee as he did not file as a Republican. For Gio Cicione to hold Mr. Healey out or suggest or allude he has party support is highly misleading, as being Chairman gives the impression the support is official.
3. The R.I. Republican State Central Committee has not by any vote supported or endorsed Bob Healey’s candidacy. It is not a normal thing to be done in this case and likely/possibly not permitted by party rules.
4. This is most certainly the first time in Rhode Island Republican Party history there is no nominee for Lt. Governor in the general election for the Republicans dating back to the 1850s’.
5. This election cycle the Republican nominee for Governor will not have a Republican running with him as Lieutenant Governor where the office exists.
Regards,
Scott

helen
helen
10 years ago

Marc,I appreciate what you say because I am very discouraged. Maybe it is because I am a little older than most of the people who post here and and a little more tired of feeling like I have little or no representation on the state or federal levels.
To BobN: Kara Russo was a legitimate candidate because she met the requirements and was on the ballot. Are you saying that the Republican Party put an illegitimate candidate on the ballot? I don’t think so.
I am not in the Party’s inner circle. I’m an unaffiliated Jeffersonian Constitutionalist who figures the Republican Party offers me the best option for any representation in our state.
As you say primaries are public matters and the state is involved. As long as the state is involved,they are public matters. I would like the state to get out of a lot of our personal business. Maybe you and I can agree on that.

Carroll B. Merriman
Carroll B. Merriman
9 years ago

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