Dee DeQuattro (@DeeDeQuattro)
It’s less than one week from the September 9th primary election, and some candidates have begun to pull out their “September Surprise.”
Foe to friend
For gubernatorial candidate Ken Block that surprise was an endorsement from his former foe John Robitaille. Block announced that the man he ran against when Block was a Moderate in 2010 would now endorse his bid to be the Republican Candidate for Governor. This is a win for Block who has struggled to fight a stigma within the Republican Party from people who accused him of ruining the election from Robitaille with his candidacy as a Moderate in 2010. Block’s opponent Cranston Mayor Allan Fung responded with his own endorsement from former Massachusetts Governor and former Presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
Block and Robitaille dismissed the Romney endorsement as a mistake while Fung took the gentleman’s approach and congratulated Block for grabbing Robitaille’s endorsement. There should be no surprise to Block that Romney endorsed the Fung Campaign -- after all, Block openly voted against Romney in 2012. He has since said his vote for Obama was a bad decision. After the endorsements were announced, Block also took the “moral high road” in a WPRI-TV debate announcing he hates this campaign and the direction it has went in. Most of the public agrees with you Ken, and we are happy to see it end on Tuesday.
Surplus? or minus?
Cumberland Mayor Dan McKee scored with some tricks of his own this week as he held a joint press conference with North Providence Mayor Charlie Lombardi. Mckee and Lombardi called out Mollis for “misrepresenting” town finances. The two said Mollis claimed the city had a surplus in financial statements that reflected the sale of a DPW building. The sale of the building was never completed because when Lombardi took office he cancelled the sale. Mollis fired back saying that move cost the town $1 million. Mckee also said Mollis exaggerated the condition of town pensions.
Piling on Ralph
Mollis is on the losing list this week as it seems that everyone is piling it on from all directions. A Superior Court Justice also took on Mollis saying he will review whether to sanction the sitting Secretary of State for delaying hearings into possible lobbying violations on behalf of 38 Studios. Lawyers for ne of the alleged “lobbyists” Michael Corso said that Mollis was requesting court ordered depositions to delay the hearings which Corso called politically motivated. Sanctions or no sanctions the news is not good with one week to go before the primary. Meanwhile, Republican Catherine Taylor is probably gunning for a Mollis win so she can have a rematch from 2010 where she was within 1% of beating him.
Meanwhile, Matt Fecteau Democratic candidate for Congress had a rough week as he was removed from a political fundraiser for not paying the ticket price. Fecteau says he was kicked out of a fundraiser for the Rhode Island Democratic Part at the Providence Firefighters Hall on Tuesday, his birthday. He said he wouldn’t pay the excessive $500 ticket price so he was asked to leave. Well, that is typically how it works, if you want to go to an event that costs money, you pay the money. Fecteau is mad because he says other candidates including his opponent Congressman Cicilline didn’t pay the full ticketed price. Fecteau didn’t let this birthday slight go to waste. He decided he would donate $500 to a real cause and cut a check to the PKD Foundation. Now he wants the other attendees to do the same.
Re-Pell-ican? or Demo-Clay?
On the Democratic side, there was a September bombshell regarding Clay Pell. Did you know he used to be a Republican in Arizona? Well, that’s what voter registration sheets show, and Pell admitted to it. Now he says he is a dedicated Democrat. No one should doubt him, he has rolled out an extremely progressive agenda.
The problem is this former Republican thing makes Pell look even more Chafee-esque. Many people have been saying that electing Pell would be like re-electing Chafee since the two both are from Rhode Island political families, come across as socially awkward, and have similar ideals. Now that it has come to light that Pell was once a Republican the 33-year-old candidate appears more like Chafee, who was also once a Republican. Angel Taveras is probably welcoming the news hoping it turns off some of Pell’s more progressive supporters and drives them to vote for Taveras.
That’s all for this week. We will find out who the real winners and losers are on Tuesday.
I’ll be away next week recovering from the primary in the beautiful city of Chicago so I will talk to you all in two weeks.
Don’t forget to go out and vote on Tuesday!
Tuesday, Sept. 9th: WBOB will be on-air to give you