RE: The Unthrilling Election

On Matt Allen’s show earlier this week, Justin did a good job of explaining why there doesn’t seem to be any excitement surrounding this year’s RI Governor race. Basically, Democrats are getting hammered across the rest of the nation and the energy is on the side of the Tea Party/GOPers, which leaves our oh-so-Democratic state out of the national conversation and our heavily Democratic electorate feeling justifiably uninispired.
In a state where “I know a guy” is viewed as a legitimate career path, charges of cronyism from one political scion–liberal independent Linc Chafee–against another–Democrat Frank Caprio–may seem downright befuddling. And bringing the family into the mix? “Don’t dese guys know dat everyone wants a good state job and dat youse should leave da family outta it?” Sheesh. Neither of these guys get it! It’s enough to make you wanna stay home on election day.

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Patrick
Patrick
10 years ago

I’m at a bit of a loss on who to give my vote for Governor. I’m a Republican, but:
Caprio is a conservative Democrat. How can I vote for a Democrat?
Robitaille has a lot of ground to make up before he’s really in the race. Yes, if everyone took my attitude, he’d never win. But he really needs to get on the ball with advertising. If he doesn’t have the money to compete, I don’t know how he can pull this one off. Plus, if I vote for him, that makes the Chafee election one vote easier. And I will despise Chafee being Governor.
As for Ken Block, I really want him to get his 5%, but see the last couple sentences above about Robitaille.
Chafee. Ugh. I have never liked this guy. Went to see him speak once in a room that only about 10 people attended and he was so wimpy, so wishy washy, that I thought it was disgusting. Though I have long thought that it would be great to get the most liberal, most progressive possible candidate in the Governor’s seat, so then there is no more blaming the Republicans for what is wrong with the state. Every bad news that comes out is Carcieri’s fault, as he’s the Governor. Never mind that he has a veto-proof Assembly against him. So maybe we send Chafee to the Governor’s Office for four years, let him completely tank the state for four years, and maybe then people will say, “Hmm, it wasn’t the Republicans all along, it was these damned Democrats!”
I still have no idea who to vote for.

jp
jp
10 years ago

That’s weird. The Projo “Chaffee says Judge Caprio should resign education post” story features pictures of Chaffee and the junior Caprio. Must have been an honest mistake over there on Fountain St….someone should alert them.

OldTimeLefty
10 years ago

“Don’t dese guys know dat everyone wants a good state job and dat youse should leave da family outta it?”
“Dese” for “these”, “dat” for “that”, “youse” for “you”, “da” for “the”, and “outta” for “out of” sounds like an elitist snob poking fun of the speech of someone less well educated. One could even interpret it as “mafia speech”, but I won’t go there. However it is significant that 25% of the words (5 out of 20) were written in mocking slang.
OldTimeLefty

rhody
rhody
10 years ago

If the other part-timers in the CCRI athletic dept. were getting health insurance, too, I might look at it differently. But talk about your special deal…this is just as bad as anything they pull at the General Assembly.
If the judge ran the state, he’d have made Vinny Paz the budget director.

jp
jp
10 years ago

Rhody, you’re right. But it is detestible that the Projo is trying to tie it to the candidate for Governor; and if they believe that voters should weigh the actions of relatives, fine – I look forward to the piece on the Cicillini family.

jparis
jparis
10 years ago

Judge Caprio used taxpayer money to help out a friend — landing him a job that doesn’t even exist (please let me know if I can grab one of those part time jobs with full-time benefits… I could use it!) — that’s unethical, and it’s directly in violation of the RI Judicial Code of Conduct. Even if the Chafee Campaign dug this up, it doesn’t make it any less true.
Mr. Caprio should step up to the plate and acknowledge that his father made a mistake… and promise that such things won’t happen under his administration. To do otherwise is to tacitly admit that he doesn’t mind the cronyism and corruption that has plagued our state for so long.
I’m sorry — did ALL of you learn all your core values on your own, without your father’s influence? Did your father not teach you right from wrong?
If Judge Caprio taught his son his own personal version of right and wrong, I think that Caprio Jr. will not bring the high ethical standards we need to the State House.

Chris
Chris
10 years ago

Patrick: I feel the same way that you do, and will hold my nose and vote for Caprio simply to keep Linc Chafee out of the Governor’s office. Robitaille and Block are good guys, but neither one has a snowball’s chance, and everyone knows it.
OTL: You have obviously never spent any quality time in Johnston or North Providence.

Patrick
Patrick
10 years ago

Hey jparis, let me use your line of reasoning.
David and John Cicilline share the same father. According to your statements, we learn right and wrong from our father. So I have to assume that you believe John Cicilline learned right and wrong from his father. Clearly he didn’t learn it too well, as he did prison time for a crime.
So we’ve established that John Cicilline’s father teaches morals and right/wrong incorrectly. John’s father also taught David Cicilline right from wrong, because as you say, we learn it from our father. We know that their father is bad at teaching right from wrong and morals, to the point where one son thought it was ok to steal and write bad checks. We have to assume that David Cicilline has the same values and morals.
So if you have a problem with Caprio Jr’s morals that he presumably learned from his father, then I’d think you also have a problem with those of David Cicilline and will be voting for John Loughlin in November, right?

BobN
BobN
10 years ago

You guys who are putting down Robitaille’s chances are engaging in self-fulfilling defeatism. If you would “buck up” (as the imam-in-chief said this week) and spread the word to your friends and neighbors about John’s qualifications, you might surprise yourselves.
The fact is, that John Robitaille is the only candidate who is genuinely well-qualified for the job of Governor. He is the only one who understands how to get things done in our state government and understands the perspective of an ordinary, hard-working, business owning taxpayer.
Don’t let the natural pessimism and apathy of the Rhode Island culture get to you.

jparis
jparis
10 years ago

Hi Patrick,
To respond to your questions:
Unfortunately, while I am in the process of moving back home to Rhode Island, I am still registered to vote in Washington, DC. So while I can’t vote in this RI election cycle, I’m trying to participate as best I can.
When I was living in Providence before I went to grad school, I spent some time under the Cicilline administration and wasn’t particularly impressed with the direction Providence took under his watch — I saw businesses close and historic cultural venues lost. As an independent voter, I would certainly look at Mr. Loughlin’s record before making my decision on the RI 1st district.
You make a good point though: We don’t learn ALL our morals and values from our parents. We learn from them, and then also grow up into adults with our own ideas…. sometimes we even rebel from our folks.
So why hasn’t Mr. Caprio just said: “Hey, my father made a mistake, but he isn’t me. I won’t tolerate corruption in my administration.”
That would prove that he’s his own man, with his own moral compass, and that while he loves his father, he still made a mistake using the taxpayers’ money to help out a friend.

Kathy
Kathy
10 years ago

Vote for Robitaille. The logic of he doesn’t stand a chance doesn’t hold. Be bold and brave and vote for the person who resembles the values you hold. There are a lot of undecided folks, and Chafee and Caprio have more than peaked. Plenty of time for gloom and doom talk if Robitaille doesn’t win. In true RI speak, if we get skunked in this election, I know a guy who sells houses who will help you find a nice red state to live.

Monique
Editor
10 years ago

“Be bold and brave and vote for the person who resembles the values you hold.”
I second that for two reasons.
One is the principle that Kathy referenced. Secondly, I understand the concept of making the blame 100% Democratic by electing a Dem (i.e., Caprio or Chafee) governor. The hitch is that there’s no guarantee that Dem voters in this state would learn anything if a Dem is elected and the state tanks by the next election. Undoubtedly, if that happens, it will be the fault of George Bush (or Karl Rove or the little green men whose planet astronomers found this week).

rhody
rhody
10 years ago

Robitaille’s biggest problem is that Republicans are so blinded by their hatred of Chafee that they’re willing to vote against their own party.
Robitaille needs to start taking it to Caprio pronto.Unless he just doesn’t have the fire in the belly – after all, Caprio’s already benefitted from a primary opponent who found he didn’t have it.

David S
David S
10 years ago

Please allow me a couple of points on your opinions, Marc.
No excitement. Thats the way you want it. After 8 years of your guy, whatisname? Blowfish? The Don? The failure with a public parachute?, one would think you and the other backers of the Don would just be licking their wounds and attempting to prop up his crony- Roby. But no. You have gone negative. The old Republican playbook employed- suppress the vote. Claim no interest. Why would anyone vote?
So now you are taking the Buddy line. Buddy- the convicted pay for play Buddy – now is your source for information. Not your own blog contacts. Interesting. Sheesh.

Chris
Chris
10 years ago

“You guys who are putting down Robitaille’s chances are engaging in self-fulfilling defeatism. If you would “buck up” (as the imam-in-chief said this week) and spread the word to your friends and neighbors about John’s qualifications, you might surprise yourselves.”
If this wasn’t the screwy three-way race (Block is polling single-digits, so I don’t count him) that it is, I’d be voting for Robitaille, because were this a strictly Robitaille/Caprio or Robitaille/Chafee contest, he’d at least have a fighting chance. He is certainly qualified, and is an impressive candidate, he’s just running in the wrong state. You are forgetting that you are in RhoDylin, liberal/union hack/moocher looter capital of the Northeast, where Republicans always have to start the game shorthanded and twenty points behind, nevermind throwing liberal/union heartthrob Linc Chafee into the mix.
You have to recognize that, were Robitaille to drop out of the race tomorrow, Caprio would pick up 99+% of his voters and crush Chafee. Try to remember back to 1992, when distant third-placer Ross Perot drew votes away from Bush 41. A Perot-less presidential election in ’92 would have given 41 his second term, and the world would have been spared from knowing anything about Al Gore or a stained dress.

neoconri
neoconri
10 years ago

i agree with chris …john hasnt done the work or raised the money to run a real campaign. and Caprio has suported the governor and the the teachers unions and state worker unions hate him so .. heck for that alone he would have my vote. how connected much of and insider can u really be when the union bosses hate u that bad. heck lynch was calling him a republican. ..the left wing of the Dems hate him and call him a dino… why dont we wake up and join him instead of spliting our vote and giving it to chafee bye waiting out vote on john.. nice guy smart guy … but… chafee is the problem not caprio

ScottieV
ScottieV
10 years ago

I can see the only ones with any brains here are Chris and Neoconri.
This is why the GOP and the Tea Party never win any elections in Rhode Island. They put they’re ideals ahead of any remote sense of pragmatism. They’d rather vote for Don Carcieri II instead of a conservative Democrat like Caprio.
If Caprio were as bad as Chafee, I’d say have at it. But Caprio is 100 times more conservative then Chafee.
These cut-the-nose-to-spite-the-face types are actually part of the reason this state is in the dumps.
Vote Caprio on November 2 if you want real pension reform.

BobN
BobN
10 years ago

neoconri, your post is a sterling example of what Matt Allen calls “the putrid Rhode Island gene” – the expectation and acceptance of mediocrity.

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

jp-A story on the Cicillines in the projo?Not likely-that putrid fish wrap is shilling for Chafee and Cicilline.
It’s kind of funny that so many people were beefing about the Lynch “dynasty”and the fact we might have one as Governor and one in Congress.
Now we have two members of political families running for Governor.Cicilline isn’t and Loughlin sure isn’t.
I can’t vote for Loughlin because I’m in District 2,but if you listen to him you’ll notice he(a)isn’t saying the things Cicilline accuses him of and(b)has no problem answering a question with specifics rather than a standard platitude.The thought of David Cicilline in Congress is sickening.Maybe now the whole state can be overrun with boarded up houses and businesses instead of Providence.He screwed Providence up royally.
His replacement hasn’t shown much either-nothing but-“we’ll bring everyone together”and some blather in Spanish to start things off,and that won’t do much to bring people together.
As far as I know English is the primary language we use here.There’s nothing wrong with him making an address in Spanish,but I think English would have been more appropriate for the first statement.
Chafee and his family have been involved in political job horse trading for a long time-where does he get the nerve to act superior to Caprio?
Matter of fact,the Chafees dealt in jobs like,judge,senator,prosecutor,etc.
That’s a little heavier than a weight room monitor.
I’m not saying the Chafees were dishonest,but they definitely played the politics to the hilt.
Maybe the boxer’s job is questionable,but Mesolella’s wife was more than qualified for the position she got.
BTW I wouldn’t know Mesolella if I bumped into him-I’ve heard his name a lot related to a hotel deal or something some years ago-he also wanted to drain a lake,right?

Scott Bill Hirst
Scott Bill Hirst
10 years ago

Hi!
First off serious observers of the Almond and Carcieri administrations will note neither of them really were party builders. The RIGOP a year from now portends to be in sad shape unless something extraordinary happens in the gubernatorial race.
I expect however some notable Republicans on top such as Mayoes Avedesian and Fung, as well as possibly Erik Wallin (AG) and John Loughlin (U.S. House, 1ST District),. Others will have a difficult time.
Frankly, I will NEVER forget the handling of the Lt. Governor’s race this year by the state GOP “leadership”.
What has NOT been brought up in the Caprio saga is the building & zoning issue the elder Caprio was involved in years back in Narragansett.
While it is blatantly partisan, I would suggest where he is in polling, John Robitaille needs to stress to have an effective two party and checks & balance system in Rhode Island. That fact along with addressing issues on Rhode Islanders minds may improve his standing and put him in a possible position to win.
The question with Chafee is as an independent who in the General Assembly will put forward his legislative program? He will clearly will have to deal with the Democratic majority leadership. Even a GOP Governor would deal with the same Democrat leadership, but he would have at least some Republican legislators to look out for the administration.
Regards,
Scott

rhody
rhody
10 years ago

As a developer, Mesolella once threatened to drain Pascoag Reservoir if he didn’t get his way from Burrillville officials. What a sleazebag move – Caprio having this guy host a fundraiser for him would’ve cost him my vote no matter who else was in the race.

John
John
10 years ago

Why is there no enthusiasm for this election? Simple. Because there is no longer a potential majority of voters left in RI to elect a true reform coalition. So many of them have moved out over the past decade. What we are witnessing is a fight between different packs of hyenas over what is left of the putrid, rotting carcass otherwise known as Rhode Island’s private sector, tax paying economy.
So we see lots of energy around “protect public sector pensions” litmus tests, and protect social safety net litmus tests. But next to zero energy around taking steps that would actually benefit the private sector economy, and the size of the tax revenue pie.
Why this comes as a surprise to anyone is beyond me.

neoconri
neoconri
10 years ago

my postion isnt medeocrity as some one said.. its well thought out. we have had the dem party run leftys and party hacks for gov and i fought everyone of them . Now the left wing of the Dem party has teamed up with the teachers union and state workers union and the Dem party has finnaly put up a conservative who has a recored of fighting his leadership and reaching out to US in the repuliocan party, and quite frankly the cacari adminstration. And what do the brain trust in our party do ??? they out that he met with us and might have even meet with out national leaders..If caprio was gov all the consevative D’s would actully have some one to rally around and maybe we could get something done up there. But no we need to drive over the cliff with john just because he has an R in front of his name..under normal times maybe but ..SOMETHING THAT HASNT BEEN SAID.. THE UNIONS ARE POISED TO HAVE NOT JUST THE GA BUT THE GOVERNORSHIP WITH CHAFEE, and that is just to scary a thought for party politics sorry.. the people on this blog are inteligent .. look at the choisse … i may hold my nose but i am voting for CAprio for all the reasons mentioned and one other . read rifuture they are terrified of him …i just love that

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

That’s it-the Pascoag reservoir-what an ass!
However,maybe his wife is a nice lady.She did have the requisite background as I understood it.
I’ll say this for Judge Caprio-from “Caught in Providence”-he always seemed amenable to giving someone a break if they were hard up for money and they didn’t cop an attitude.I think he had compassion for working people.He wasn’t demeaning just because he had “Judge”in front of his name.
He sure stuck it to those smartass out of town college punks who crapped on their parking ticket responsibility.

robert geake
robert geake
10 years ago

Just wanted to comment on this: Rhode Islanders, despite the pundits and old time political gurus are in need of a change. We’ve witnessed a slew of young candidates- left, right, and center take the stage in the last few elections, and this is a welcome change from the products of the good old boy networks in the state. Like it or not, the old parties are losing power, and prestige in the voter’s eyes.
Electing Linc Chafee Governor will put this change into overdrive and give heart to many aspiring citizens who wish to run legitimate races in a state too long known for it’s cronyism and back-door politics.

Anthony
Anthony
10 years ago

Just a quick response to neoconri, if people are so intelligent on this blog how come you can’t spell the word?
All the posters are so strongly for a conservative governor, but I am not hearing a rousing list of the great accomplishments of Gov. Carcieri. I guess thats due to a dearth of real accomplishments. I sleight tax reform, and a few back room deals.
While Caprio may be saying he’ll stay the line on taxes, you true conservatives should be able to slice through that and see the truth is he’ll raise taxes once in office. You can’t save millions by cutting away waste from the state government without firing many employees a move caprio wouldn’t dare to do.
The only candidate who has been honest about his intentions is Linc Chafee, and he has my vote.

Anthony
Anthony
10 years ago

Just a quick response to neoconri, if people are so intelligent on this blog how come you can’t spell the word?
All the posters are so strongly for a conservative governor, but I am not hearing a rousing list of the great accomplishments of Gov. Carcieri. I guess thats due to a dearth of real accomplishments. I sleight tax reform, and a few back room deals.
While Caprio may be saying he’ll stay the line on taxes, you true conservatives should be able to slice through that and see the truth is he’ll raise taxes once in office. You can’t save millions by cutting away waste from the state government without firing many employees a move caprio wouldn’t dare to do.
The only candidate who has been honest about his intentions is Linc Chafee, and he has my vote.

Hugh Pattenson
Hugh Pattenson
10 years ago

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10 years ago

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Lenora Ducat
9 years ago

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