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  • September 23, 2010
    By David Scharfenberg

    Independent gubernatorial candidate Lincoln Chafee goes on the offensive today, with back-to-back press conferences planned. At noon, he promises "a major disclosure concerning personnel in the General Treasurer's office" - the treasurer, Democrat Frank Caprio, being his primary rival in the gubernatorial race. And at 2 p.

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  • March 22, 2010
    By David Scharfenberg

    Former Textron executive Bill Clegg. whose interest in running for Representative James Langevin's seat was first reported by N4N, has made it official: he's in the GOP primary. And retired Superior Court Judge Mark Pfeiffer tells the ProJo he's weighing a Republican run for Representative Patrick J. Kennedy's seat.

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  • February 12, 2010
    By David Scharfenberg

    Just spoke with Republican party chairman Giovanni Cicione. A CNN report had him voicing interest in the Kennedy seat. He told me he has the "interest" but not the "capability" - with four kids and a small business, he said, now is not the right time to pour the time and energy into the race.

  • January 20, 2010
    By David Scharfenberg

    The Rhode Island Republican Party, locked in a nasty fight about whether to move right or strike a moderate tone in its bid to return to relevance, has a question to answer: what is the lesson of Republican Scott Brown's surprise victory in the US Senate race in Massachusetts yesterday?

    Party chairman Giovanni Cicione, who has pushed for a more moderate, inclusive approach and is the target of a conservative effort to oust him, is clearly seeing vindication for his position in Brown's victory.

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  • December 10, 2009
    By David Scharfenberg

    The Rhode Island Republican Party's scuffle over a platform that would embrace candidates with moderate positions on social issues like abortion is, perhaps, the worst signal the state GOP could send at this moment.

    Anti-incumbent feeling is brewing nationwide as the economy continues to struggle and health care reform tumbles in the polls.

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  • November 02, 2009
    By David Scharfenberg

    In my piece on the Rhode Island Tea Party a couple of weeks back, I wrote a bit about the tea party movement's uneasy relationship with the GOP - here and nationwide. The movement, a collection of ideological purists, have been quick to criticize the Republican Party for its role in expanding federal spending in recent years.

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  • May 18, 2009
    By David Scharfenberg

    A month after crowding the State House lawn with a tax-day rally, of surprising size, against wasteful government spending, the organizers of the so-called "Tea Party" are back at it again.

    In an e-mail to supporters titled "Save the Date to Save Our State," Tea Party coordinator Colleen Conley is calling on backers to turn out at the State House June 10 to push for pension reform and cost-cutting measures championed by Republican Governor Donald Carcieri.

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  • January 29, 2009
    By Ian Donnis

    Thanks to Chris for passing along this (not particularly surprising) story from the Hill:

    It does not pay to be a Democrat in Utah or a Republican in Rhode Island, according to a new series of polls released by the Gallup Organization. That is because those states tilt most heavily to the right and left, respectively.

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  • November 22, 2008
    By Ian Donnis
    With an op-ed in today's ProJo, Tom Sgouros notes how the Republican label -- though not necessarily somewhat conservative politics, aka old-school RI Repulicanism -- was lethal for General Assembly candidates earlier this month.
    [A]ll is not bleak for the Republicans. There were two notable Republican winners.

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  • November 17, 2008
    By Ian Donnis

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    Steven Stark makes a lively observation: the national fade of the Republican Party coincides with the rise of conservative talk-radio:

    Rush Limbaugh's show was syndicated in 1988. It's been a steady climb toward the top of the ratings for him and his imitators ever since, but pretty much downhill for the party they all support.

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  • November 11, 2008
    By Ian Donnis

    http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:Sleeping_asian_elephant.jpg

    At the other end of the spectrum . . .

    Justin Catalano, a young conservative activist who has formed a group called the 1772 Society, is the latest to consider the woes of the Rhode Island Republican Party.

    Over the next few months, the Gentlemen of 1772 Society will be analyzing this election in excruciating detail - detail that has never been seen before in one place and in writing.

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  • November 06, 2008
    By Ian Donnis

    Whether Sarah Palin will emerge as a future contender or remain just a part of the 2008 campaign will take some time to shake out. For now, an unflattering campaign post-mortem in Newsweek is getting a lot of mileage.

    Dan Kennedy:

    If nothing else, I hope Sarah Palin's partisans come to realize that her supposed enemies in the media were a bunch of wimps compared to her supposed friends in the McCain campaign.

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  • November 05, 2008
    By Ian Donnis

    Let us count the ways.

    1. Dan Yorke is making a plausible case that the party, because of its utter incompetence, should cease operations for about 12 or 18 months.

    2. AFL-CIO secretary-treasurer George Nee, a Democratic stalwart, recognizes the state GOP is so feeble that he cites to the ProJo the (theoretical) importance of a competitive two-party system.

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  • November 05, 2008
    By Ian Donnis

    As part of my forthcoming Q+A with Linc Chafee in this week's Phoenix, I asked him about the direction of the national GOP after its second consecutive pummeling, specifically whether it will move farther to the right or back toward the center. Here's what he said.

    I’m an independent now. I thought long and hard for six months before I left the party after I lost.

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  • November 05, 2008
    By Ian Donnis

    Justin from Anchor Rising was part of the media/blog crew at the Biltmore last night, and he seemed resigned to an Obama victory even when very little of the results were in. It was a bad night for local Republicans, as I forecast last week, and Justin's analysis is spot-on.

    It's time to admit that the RI GOP's brand is not only useless, it's poison.

    Read More

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