democrats

RI Democrats’ 2014 victory was most sweeping since 1960

November 7th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

Projo_JFK_1960_RI_SOSJust how sweeping was Rhode Island Democrats’ election victory on Tuesday night? As it turns out, it was their biggest set of wins since the year John F. Kennedy was elected president.

On Tuesday, for the first time since 1960, Rhode Island Democrats managed to win all nine major offices on the ballot: governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general, general treasurer, U.S. senator, 1st District congressman, 2nd District congressman, and Providence mayor, according to a WPRI.com review of past election results.

Democrats have had big years before – Republicans won no federal races in 2012, 2008, 2004 or 1996, for example – but it’s been 54 years since the party won all nine of those top offices in a single November election.

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President Obama endorses Elorza over Cianci in race for mayor

October 27th, 2014 at 10:38 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Even President Obama wants Buddy Cianci to lose the race for mayor.

The president on Monday endorsed Democrat Jorge Elorza for Providence mayor, calling the 37-year-old former Housing Court judge the candidate who will bring “honest leadership” to city government.

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Poll: Jack Reed has a 45-point lead for re-election

October 26th, 2014 at 11:02 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – U.S. Sen. Jack Reed continues to hold a massive lead in his bid for a fourth six-year term ahead of next month’s election, according to a new online-only poll released Sunday by The New York Times, CBS News and YouGov.

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GOP-union alliance scrambles RI lieutenant gov. campaign

October 16th, 2014 at 12:00 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Organized labor is usually one of the most reliable constituencies for Democratic politicians in Rhode Island, but this year many unions are taking an unusual step: backing a Republican.

It reflects how the sleepy race for lieutenant governor is scrambling some of Rhode Island’s usual political alliances. A WPRI 12/Providence Journal poll released Tuesday showed Democrat Dan McKee leading Republican Catherine Taylor 36% to 27%, but nearly one in three voters – 31% – were still undecided.

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Poll: Jack Reed leads by 42 points in re-election bid

October 5th, 2014 at 12:31 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Democrat Jack Reed appears on track to coast to a fourth six-year term in the U.S. Senate next month, according to a new online-only poll released Sunday by The New York Times, CBS News and YouGov, which has Reed at 64% and Republican Mark Zaccaria at 22%.

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Guillaume de Ramel’s business record scrutinized

September 5th, 2014 at 11:50 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Democrat Guillaume de Ramel’s campaign is sharing new details about the two businesses he incorporated in Rhode Island, following aggressive criticism from Nellie Gorbea, his rival in next week’s primary for secretary of state.

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Watch Newsmakers: Jorge Elorza debates Michael Solomon

August 31st, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


Bill Clinton: Seth Magaziner is ready to be RI treasurer

August 27th, 2014 at 5:55 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Former President Bill Clinton gave a full-throated endorsement of Democrat Seth Magaziner in the race for Rhode Island general treasurer on Wednesday, telling a campaign rally that the 31-year-old political newcomer is ready to do the job.

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Analysis: 5 takeaways from the Democratic gov debate

August 26th, 2014 at 11:00 pm by under Nesi's Notes

Click here to read my five takeaways from the debate on the new WPRI.com website »


Realtors spend $75K to help Chris Wall defeat Goldin

August 19th, 2014 at 11:54 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Chris Wall, a Democratic candidate running an aggressive primary campaign for Rhode Island Senate, is getting some deep-pocketed help from the National Association of Realtors.

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Watch Newsmakers: Frank Ferri; Matt Fecteau

August 17th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


Clay Pell’s résumé comes under closer scrutiny

August 12th, 2014 at 10:40 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Democratic gubernatorial hopeful Clay Pell has compiled a lengthy résumé in the nine years since he received his bachelor’s degree from Harvard University, an employment history that is drawing more scrutiny as it comes under fire from one of his rivals.

Pell has actually had only two full-time permanent jobs since finishing law school, according to a WPRI.com review of public information, statements made by Pell and details provided by his campaign.

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De Ramel mostly mum on why he hired Gordon Fox

August 10th, 2014 at 12:57 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Guillaume de Ramel, a Democratic candidate for secretary of state, isn’t saying much when it comes to why a business he helped to start briefly employed former House Speaker Gordon Fox to do legal work back in 2011.

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Clay Pell launching new ad to blunt Taveras attack

August 7th, 2014 at 10:00 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Democratic gubernatorial candidate Clay Pell is moving quickly to try and blunt a TV attack ad that’s being aired in heavy rotation by his rival, Providence Mayor Angel Taveras, with his own spot arguing the campaign should stay policy-focused.

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Bill Clinton to campaign in Providence for Seth Magaziner

August 6th, 2014 at 10:30 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Former President Bill Clinton is set to visit Rhode Island later this month to campaign for Democratic general-treasurer candidate Seth Magaziner, WPRI.com has learned.

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Angel Taveras slams Clay Pell in new TV attack ad

August 5th, 2014 at 10:36 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Providence Mayor Angel Taveras late Tuesday launched a frontal assault against his Democratic gubernatorial rival Clay Pell, debuting a new TV ad that criticizes the political newcomer as “inexperienced and out of touch.”

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Watch Newsmakers: De Ramel, Gorbea debate for SoS

July 27th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


Clay Pell getting traction in Democratic gov primary

July 21st, 2014 at 1:48 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Could Clay Pell win the Democratic nomination for governor on Sept. 9?

No small number of people have scoffed at that suggestion. But with 50 days to go before the primary – and more than $1 million in Pell TV ads saturating the airwaves – there’s reason to think the 32-year-old political newcomer has a real, if still unlikely, shot at victory.

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Watch Newsmakers: Ferri, McKee and Mollis debate for LG

July 20th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under General Talk, Nesi's Notes


Democratic lieutenant governor hopefuls spar in fiery debate

July 18th, 2014 at 3:17 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The three Democratic candidates for Rhode Island lieutenant governor aggressively defended the office they’re seeking Friday, arguing that voters statewide should elect the person who is first in line to take over if the governor is unable to complete his term.

Secretary of State Ralph Mollis, Cumberland Mayor Daniel McKee and state Rep. Frank Ferri also sparred over 38 Studios, corruption and education while lobbing criticism at one another regarding their respective tenures in public office, during a fiery debate on a special edition of WPRI 12′s Newsmakers.

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• Related: Watch the full Democratic lieutenant governor debate on Newsmakers (July 18)


Watch Newsmakers: Almonte, Caprio and Magaziner debate

July 13th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


Watch Newsmakers: House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello

July 6th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes


RI Dems make endorsements; stay neutral in gov’s race

June 23rd, 2014 at 9:29 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Dan McGowan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island Democrats endorsed a slate of candidates for state and federal office at their party’s nominating convention Sunday, but opted to stay neutral in the state’s hotly contested race for governor.

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Gorbea, Mattiello trade barbs after he backs De Ramel

June 19th, 2014 at 5:43 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – One of the two Democrats running for secretary of slate is less than pleased with House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello for backing her rival in the race. And the speaker isn’t taking the criticism lying down.

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Watch: The entire June 10 RI Democratic primary debate

June 11th, 2014 at 11:10 am by under Nesi's Notes


5 takeaways from Tuesday night’s Democratic RI gov. debate

June 10th, 2014 at 11:05 pm by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

Raimondo Taveras Pell June 2014 debateThe top three Democratic candidates for governor – Angel Taveras, Gina Raimondo and Clay Pell – met Tuesday night for their first TV debate of the primary campaign. For a full recap of what they said, check out Dan McGowan’s full story on WPRI.com. The full video of the entire 60-minute debate is online here.

Here are five quick takeaways from this first primary debate of the season.

1. Nobody bombed. Supporters of the three candidates will point to the best moments each of them had and the occasional stumbles of their rivals, but the truth is there didn’t appear to be any really bad moments that will become a major post-debate headache for their campaigns. Particularly in the first debate, when the candidates are still trying to get their sea legs, they likely have the Hippocratic oath in mind: “First, do no harm.” As WPRI 12 political analyst Joe Fleming put it, “I would say they all held their own tonight. But nobody had a knock-out punch.”

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WPRI/Journal Poll: Caprio far ahead of Magaziner for treasurer

June 4th, 2014 at 5:00 am by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi and Tim White

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Democrat Frank Caprio has a double-digit lead in his campaign to win back his old job as general treasurer, but nearly half of voters say they haven’t made up their minds in the race, an exclusive WPRI 12/Providence Journal poll released Wednesday shows.

The new survey of 506 Rhode Island Democratic primary voters shows Caprio in the lead at 29%, with political newcomer Seth Magaziner in second place at 11% and former Auditor General Ernie Almonte in third place at 9%. The poll shows 46% of voters have yet to decide whom they’ll support in the Sept. 9 primary.

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WPRI/Journal Poll: Taveras still leads Raimondo; Pell slips

June 3rd, 2014 at 5:00 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi and Tim White

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – The tight race between Providence Mayor Angel Taveras and Treasurer Gina Raimondo for the Democratic nomination for governor has barely budged since last winter, but their opponent Clay Pell has lost ground, an exclusive WPRI 12/Providence Journal poll released Tuesday shows.

The new survey of 506 Rhode Island Democratic primary voters shows Taveras still in the lead at 33%, with Raimondo still a close second at 29% and Pell a distant third at 12%. More than one in five voters – 22% – haven’t decided whom they’ll support in the Sept. 9 primary. Perennial candidate Todd Giroux is at 1.6%.

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Key Raimondo aide Brumberger leaving for private sector

May 29th, 2014 at 5:44 pm by under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site

A longtime member of Treasurer Gina Raimondo’s State House team is heading for the exit.

Josh Brumberger, who is currently Raimondo’s deputy treasurer of policy and financial empowerment, said Thursday he will leave the treasurer’s office next month to do business development for Utilidata Inc., the Providence-based energy-management startup.

Brumberger, 35, was hired by Raimondo shortly after she took office in February 2011 and played a key role in developing policies such as the 2011 pension reform and a statewide push to improve financial literacy. His departure comes as a bit of a surprise, with Raimondo in the thick of a campaign for governor.

Brumberger also worked on former U.S. Sen. John Edwards’ 2004 presidential campaign, and was called to testify during Edwards’ 2012 trial for campaign finance fraud. He was also featured in “Game Change,” the popular campaign book penned by Mark Halperin and John Heilemann.

Brumberger is the second key Raimondo aide to leave Treasury this month. Joy Fox, Raimondo’s spokeswoman throughout her tenure there, moved over to her gubernatorial campaign this week. Raimondo’s former chief of staff, Joe Pratt, was shifted to a different job in 2012 and left her office last year.

Heather Hudson will take over as Raimondo’s director of financial empowerment and Rebecca Webber will become her policy director at Treasury once Brumberger leaves.

Ted Nesi ( tnesi@wpri.com ) covers politics and the economy for WPRI.com and writes the Nesi’s Notes blog. Follow him on Twitter: @tednesi

An earlier version of this post incorrectly said Brumberger worked on John Edwards’ 2008 presidential campaign; he worked on his 2004 campaign.


RI delegation weighs in on scrapping HealthSource RI

May 27th, 2014 at 2:28 pm by under Nesi's Notes

By Ted Nesi

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) – Rhode Island’s congressional delegation is taking a cautious approach to the state’s debate over whether to jettison HealthSource RI for the federal Obamacare marketplace, saying it’s a matter for state lawmakers to decide.

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• Related: Feds drop demand for $4.6M to fund HealthSource RI (May 27)