On the Igliozzi ouster

As Dan McGowan at GoLocalProv reported earlier today, Providence City Councilman John Igliozzi has been ousted from his position as chairman of the panel's finance committee a day after he and Councilman Terry Hassett voiced second thoughts about the sweeping pension reform package they recently approved alongside the rest of the council.

It's just the latest fallout of what seems a remarkably ill-conceived manuever. The pair were condemned by popular mayor Angel Taveras. Their bid to temper pension reform is going nowhere on the council. And the incident can't reflect all that well on Hassett, who has voiced interest in running for Secretary of State.

The blowback, joined with the General Assembly's passage of major pension reform at the state level, would also seem to suggest the diminishing returns of standing with public-sector organized labor.

But unions, however diminished, are still an important force in Rhode Island elections. And when this all blows over, Hassett may wind up with a few more committed foot soldiers.

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