Flipping Rhode Island Red…Or At Least a Shade of Purple

I have a friend who is a Pittsburg Pirates fan and I’m constantly shaking my head at the lack of effort that franchise makes to become a championship contender. The reason for this is the Pirates play in the National League Central division, which with its six teams is actually one of the weakest in baseball and often sends its champion to the postseason with the fewest wins of all playoff teams. In 2006, the St. Louis Cardinals went to the post-season and won the World Series after only winning 83 regular season games. That’s only two wins better than having equal wins and losses. Pretty mediocre.
So what’s my point here? As easy as it is for a team to get to baseball’s post season from the National League Central, I think it could be just as easy for the Republicans to make major gains in Rhode Island for relatively short money. Rhode Island has just as many Senate seats as any other state and currently, the House is very close on its makeup and we have a sitting Congressman who has to be more nervous than a long-tailed cat in a rocking chair factory.
I say short money because Rhode Island only has one media market and one statewide newspaper where the Republican National Committee could spend on advertising and touting the benefits of the fiscally conservative candidates. Start advertising with the three television media outlets (channels 12 and 64 seem to function as one) especially during the all important national news and Wheel of Fortune hour. Start dispelling rumors and misstatements by certain elected officials and start getting out a positive message.
I have walked door to door with multiple candidates over the last eight years and one thing I find when we talk to people is while Rhode Island is viewed as one of the bluest states in the country, many people do actually have fairly conservative opinions, especially on the fiscal side. People try to tell me that Rhode Island is a Democratic state, but actually, it’s not. It is an “Unaffiliated” state. The greatest percentage of voters are listed as Unaffiliated. They don’t align themselves with either party and many of them will tell you that they often have a split ballot and will vote for who they think is the best candidate.
If the RNC were to come in and focus on the fiscal conservatism of its candidates and sway these on-the-fence-unaffiliateds, great inroads could be made toward moving Rhode Island’s seats in Washington to the other side of the aisle and at least turn our deep blue to some shade of purple.

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Sammy in Arizona
Sammy in Arizona
10 years ago

Arizona Republicans are fundraising by raffling off a Glock pistol, the same brand of gun used to shoot Rep. Gabrielle Giffords just eight months ago.
On Aug. 26, the Pima County Republican Party sent out an online newsletter that described the raffle as part of an initiative to raise money for get out the vote efforts.
Sammy in Arizona
how about an iPad, or a bag of golf clubs… if you want to honor the 2nd amendment, why not raffle off a shotgun or a hunting rifle?

OldTimeLefty
10 years ago

“If the RNC were to come in and focus on the fiscal conservatism of its candidates and sway these on-the-fence-unaffiliateds, great inroads could be made toward moving Rhode Island’s seats in Washington to the other side of the aisle and at least turn our deep blue to some shade of purple.” – Unfounded assertions.
Most of the people that I know who are “unaffiliated”, I’m one of them, are so because they don’t really want to support the Democratic Party, but cannot at all relate to Republican programs. I can’t see any “inroads” in that make up. I think you have been going around preaching to the choir.
OldTimeLefty

Warringtn Faust
Warringtn Faust
10 years ago

I am afraid I have to agree with OTL, most of the “unaffiliated” are Democrats in hiding.

chuckR
chuckR
10 years ago

I am afraid I have to agree with OTL, most of the “unaffiliated” are Democrats in hiding.
Perhaps that will change when they know more people who are unemployed than people who work for government.

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Rhode Island is a lost cause and will remain so until the few productive individuals left move out and stop bankrolling the corrupt beast through taxation. Good luck on the campaign trail convincing illegal aliens, welfare queens, political hacks, and art college Marxists to vote for Republicans. That’s over 50% of the vote right there.
Virginia is set to run a surplus again next year. Just saying.

Warrington Faust
Warrington Faust
10 years ago

Dan writes:
“Rhode Island is a lost cause and will remain so until the few productive individuals left move out and stop bankrolling the corrupt beast through taxation”
Shades of Ayn Rand and John Galt. Still, Dan has a very valid point. For centuries the poor and oppressed have gone to America. If Rhode Islanders want to go there too, who am I to blame them? For those who choose to remain, honor requires that you fight the good fight. That is the first principle of curmudgeonry.
Dan, each time I go there, the Shenandoah looks better and better. For sea food, water and sailing, try the North Carolina outer banks. For year round living by the water, the Inner Banks aren’t bad either. Although developing rapidly, the lack of industry makes it suitable for “knowledge workers” and “artists”. They are infesting the place, you will not meet a metrosexual with an accent.

mangeek
mangeek
10 years ago

While I agree about the money thing, I think most Rhode Islanders wouldn’t vote for a Republican unless there was a pre-packaged ‘Rockefeller Republican’ caucus ready to go. Now that things are fiscally totally upside-down, with the most progressive of those elected acting as the most fiscally-responsible in the party (Taveras, Raimondo, even Chafee), it’s time for some Republicans to mix it up with a flavor of their own lemonade that people here can actually swallow.
What do I mean by that? Chill out on social issues a bit, focus on proper fiscal management: Not just cutting taxes if it means more debt, streamlining existing code and regulation, modernizing old laws, making government more accountable using things we’ve learned from business, etc.

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Where I differ with the contributors here is, unlike in actual guerrilla warfare situations where a resistance can sap the resources of the ruling regime and pave the way for revolution, I don’t see anything noble about staying behind to fight the good fight in Rhode Island because it’s a winner-take-all scenario and the politicians only care about one thing – your money. As long as you stay put and they keep getting it from you, you’re just an annoying gnat complaining from the sidelines about how it gets spent. Why would Apple listen to you complain about the price of their iPhone 5 when you bought their last two models and you already have it pre-ordered it from their store? So it is with Rhode Island – if the politicians know you’ll never leave, they have no reason to do anything differently. Voting with your feet and denying them the hundreds of thousands of dollars they’ll extract from you over your lifetime is the biggest blow you can strike against their system as one individual. We have 50 states for a reason – if one of them loses it’s way you can simply move to another. The RIGOP was shouting from the rooftops about Sauro and Iannazzi. What happened as a result? Absolutely nothing. Sauro still collects his bogus pension lifting weights and dropout Iannazzi still earns $90k getting the Speaker his coffee. The DOT guy caught sleeping on the job gets put on night shift so nobody will see him sleep anymore. Etc., etc., etc. in the endless stream of abuses. Count me in with the people who would have serious reservations about voting for the RIGOP, by the way. In the 2010 election, they ran a corporatist for Governor, a 4th-tier authoritarian buffoon for Attorney General, and… Read more »

Phil
Phil
10 years ago

I suspected but now know how those at AR celebrate Labor Day. I am thankful that at least two of those writing on this thread are not my neighbors.

Phil
Phil
10 years ago

And it’s not Sammy.

Warrington Faust
Warrington Faust
10 years ago

Dan writes:
“And they spend way too much time and effort on irrelevant nonsense like gay marriage that most RI Republicans and Independents don’t care about in the first place.”
There some truth in this. But, consider the nature of the electorate. Most are probably not up on the news, most don’t have the background, or desire, to elucidate financial issues. But throw them a bone that requires only an emotional response, let’s say gay marriage, and suddenly they feel able to respond. Not everyone has knowledge, but everyone has emotions.
I think Dan mistook my comments above. I didn’t mean that it was honorable to stay and fight. I meant that if you did decide to stay, honor required you to fight. You have to let the politicians know that you don’t wear pantyhose. If you do not, you are truly a lapdog.

brassband
brassband
10 years ago

Prior to 2011, Rhode Island had a Republican Governor for all but four years since 1985. In that same time, we had two Republican U.S. Senators (John and Lincoln Chafee) and held each Congressional seat for a time (Schneider in Dist. 2 and Matchley in Dist. 1). Cranston, Warwick, and Woonsocket have Republican Mayors.
Obviously, voters in RI are willing to vote for a Republican.
Yet Dems continued to wield power in this state, largely because of their iron grip on the General Assembly, and particularly the House.
Brian Newberry is a bright and capable guy, but he can’t pull the sleigh alone.
Republicans need to run more competitive candidates in more House districts, and they also need to devote some resources to candidates who can challenge House Dem leaders in their home districts.

Warrington Faust
Warrington Faust
10 years ago

Posted by Phil:
I suspected but now know how those at AR celebrate Labor Day.
Being “Labor Day” I spent most of it putting some more roof on my barn. Why didn’t I just drive by Home Depot at 7 AM and pick up some of those Guatemalans?

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Phil – Spent the day at Mount Vernon with friends and family, then went out for dinner at a nice restaurant. What do you find objectionable about this?

Tommy Cranston
Tommy Cranston
10 years ago

“Good luck on the campaign trail convincing illegal aliens, welfare queens, political hacks, and art college Marxists to vote for Republicans. That’s over 50% of the vote right there.”
Ouch-methinks we resemble that remark.
Seriously though, there ARE enough suburban seats such that we can get a coalition of Republicans and conservative minded Democrats to combine for enough votes to stop these insane OTL budgets. 13 Senators can stop any budget and we are just about there. Beat Josh Miller and Bea Lanzi and we get there in Cranston alone.

Mark
Mark
10 years ago

The RNC can generate a huge bang for the buck by securing a US Senate seat here in RI. The total average costs of winning a US Senate campaign are $10M to $30M. The average in RI has been $6.5M
The local television and media here in RI costs less. With everything being the same, two senators per state. wouldn’t the smart money be to bet on RI?

joe bernstein
joe bernstein
10 years ago

Dan-I don’t always see eye to eye with you,but here’s a thought-why bother justifying yourself to a person like Phil?If he thinks you care what he says,he gets the satisfaction he’s looking for.
It’s the same with Russ and his canned leftist agenda.
OTL I go back and forth with because the old curmudgeon at least has an original thought now and then.
Oops-I’m getting to the “old curmudgeon”stage myself.

OldTimeLefty
10 years ago

Well, thank you joe. I go back and forth with you because, unlike Doctrinaire Dan, I think your redemption is possible.
OTL

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Joe – You’re probably right that I shouldn’t bother, but it takes all of 10 seconds to counter most of Phil’s lies and insults. I’m surprised that you regard OTL more highly – I’ve never even seen an attempt from him to make a real contribution here. Usually he just throws bombs, insults people, and leaves silly quotes. Phil tries once in a while, I give him credit for that.
OTL – Whose doctrine have I supposedly adopted? I’m actually extremely results-oriented. I’d be willing to pay more in taxes if we actually got better services and real cuts were made to bloated bureaucratic programs. What kind of doctrinaire would say that? Know why I left RI? Because the state is broken and drowning in debt. I don’t care how many D’s or R’s get elected beyond that.

Bucket Chick
Bucket Chick
10 years ago

What do I mean by that? Chill out on social issues a bit, focus on proper fiscal management: Not just cutting taxes if it means more debt, streamlining existing code and regulation, modernizing old laws, making government more accountable using things we’ve learned from business, etc. – mangeek
I totally agree with the above sentiments. It’s the social stuff that kills republicans up here for the independents. There are plenty of people who would love to vote for a fiscal conservative but don’t want to buy the whole republican package when you add the very conservative stand on many social issues. I actually think that the dems get this and that is why the social stuff gets so much focus in the media.

OldTimeLefty
10 years ago

Dan,
You said, “I’d be willing to pay more in taxes if we actually got better services and real cuts were made to bloated bureaucratic programs.”
This sentence expresses your hauteur very well. Services can indeed get better, and most to the underclass need expanding, especially medical services to the uninsured. Your answer to this seems selfish and blind, “Let them eat cake; I eat cake, why can’t they?”
As to “bloated bureaucratic programs”, who isn’t against them ? You label most services to the underclass as bloated and bureaucratic, and look away from regressive taxes like social security assessments which stop at $106,800. You are quite content to assess a person paying $213,600 at one half the rate of anyone under the $106,800 limit, or someone making $1,000,000 at 1/10th the rate. You complain about social security running short of funds, which is a falsehood in the first place, and refuse to look at lifting the ceiling on the tax. You are a blind follower who has shown no originality of thought. That is why you are Doctrinaire Dan.
Also, you haven’t left RI, you keep coming back to complain about it, like a jilted lover who cannot really let go of his ex.
OldTimeLefty

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Actually, you just made all that up, OldTimeLefty. I am not “content” with any of those things. I don’t know who you have been reading, but it certainly isn’t me. I have always been an advocate of progressive taxation where taxation is necessary.
Apparently you’re the doctrinaire you accuse me of being. If you actually listened to me once in a while rather than just coming up with stupid nicknames for your opponents, you might see that I am in favor of things that actually *work* and everything else is just a matter of details. New Hampshire and Virginia are *working.* Rhode Island, New York, and California are *not.* Why do you think that is?

Max Diesel
Max Diesel
10 years ago

“You complain about social security running short of funds, which is a falsehood in the first place”
That’s not much of an original thought either OTL. That’s just a lie from the left. Unless I missed new news, isn’t SS scheduled to run short in 2036 and medicare in 2024? In fact, nothing in your diatribe to Dan has much in the way of original thought. Dan is not exactly rewriting the issues but he isn’t repeating a lie either.

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Contrary to OTL’s tired cut-and-paste rant against me, which has little or nothing to do with things I’ve actually said here, I do agree with him that the social security “problem” could be solved by simply raising the social security tax ceiling. The real issue is whether the hidden costs of this plan would outweigh the overall benefits. He believes that they would not, while I believe that they would. That makes him some sort of visionary and me “doctrinaire,” apparently. He still hasn’t told me which “doctrine” I am supposedly following, everyone here should note.

OldTimeLefty
10 years ago

Dan,
I don’t know whether you are the ventriloquist and Max Diesel is the dummy, or the other way around. Could be that you’re both dummies?
Of course you conclude that costs of the plan would outweigh the overall benefits. You have to come to that conclusion since it’s in keeping with your preconceptions. As to whether you or I are correct in our assumptions, I can only say that the program has been running since before you were born and that millions of poor and underclass have been helped by it. My conclusion is, that if it’s going to cause pain either way, I prefer that the wealthy take the hit for a change. You, on the other hand, apparently want to squeeze the poor. It fits your preconceptions. That is why you are doctrinaire Dan,

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

OTL – Do you have any idea how silly you sound? If you can’t even acknowledge the basic concept that there is probably some internal maximum in utility to social security and welfare spending, as I have, then you’re the only doctrinaire dummy here. I think it’s comical that you accuse me of confirmation bias simply for disagreeing with you, while your own advocacy on this topic happens to be 100% in line with your own Marxist ideological background, by pure coincidence I’m sure.
I invite you to accompany me on my walk to work in the morning so you can explain to me how liberal welfare has helped the 10-20 black people who sit in the park all day, every day, eating McDonalds, drinking, sleeping, gossiping, and talking on their cellphones. They aren’t homeless and there is nothing wrong with them. And before you call me a racist, my black coworkers and friends are some of the hardest working and smartest people I know. I think it’s a crime what people like you have done to those people by making them dependent. I would help any one of them if they asked me for actual help finding work for themselves, but government keeps sending them checks so they have no need. You’re probably so dishonest you can’t even acknowledge there is a dependency problem in this country. If you stopped tarring me as an irrational maniac, you’d learn that reasonable minds can differ and I’m more than willing to learn and compromise to find real solutions to problems.

Dan
Dan
10 years ago

Still waiting to hear which “doctrine” I blindly follow, by the way. Do you not have an answer to that basic question? I’m sure you can come up with another silly alliterative nickname to dismiss me with if you don’t.
Joe – Have you realized how hopeless OTL is yet? All he does is poison the conversation and insult people.

OldTimeLefty
10 years ago

Dan,
You mistake truth for poison and refuse the cup.
OldTimeLefty

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