December 11, 2009

Rory Smith Backs Out of GOP Governor Race

Marc Comtois

As first heard (by me, at least) on Dan Yorke's show, GOP naif Rory Smith has decided against running for Governor of Rhode Island and has suspended his campaign. Learning curve was too steep (hey, I understand!).

Though Rep. Joe Trillo indicated that a "lurking Laffey" had nothing to do with Smith's decision...we shall see.

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Posted by: George at December 11, 2009 3:49 PM

Christmas came early!

Posted by: Will at December 11, 2009 4:39 PM

Make room for "lurking Laffey". If he gets in the game, we've now got a fighting chance to change things up in this state.

Posted by: MadMom at December 11, 2009 5:17 PM

A wise decision. This enhances his credibility in my mind.

I first met Rory in August. He said then that he was just beginning to take an interest in politics and was learning the territory. I was stunned when he announced for Governor a few weeks later.

My impression so far is that Rory is a very smart, honorable, honest guy with a ton of credibility in business; however, he demonstrated little awareness of the issues and no understanding of how politics works. Politics is a very different game from business and takes time to learn.

If he wants to get in the game later, I trust that he'll take the time and make the effort to develop a similar expertise about the political world as he has about business and finance.

Posted by: BobN at December 11, 2009 6:51 PM

Not surprised. I figured pro-Laffey people were going to lay the muscle on Smith at some point.
I just wonder what Laffey does, though, if Chafee drops out. I'm starting to suspect Linc doesn't have the fire in the belly for this one. Laffey's act may not play as well against Caprio.
Smith's votes probably go to the Mod to be named later.

Posted by: rhody at December 11, 2009 7:20 PM

So Laffey didn't have the guts for a direct challenge to Smith huh? I suppose the sting of a second primary defeat would have been too much for him.

Posted by: Pragmatist at December 11, 2009 7:43 PM

First it was Joe Trillo, then it was Rory Smith and now maybe Steve Laffey? What is this... the election of has beens and never will be's?! Speaking of has been's, if Laffey won't run maybe we can talk Bob Cushman into running?! This party is in a sad way.

Posted by: Sam at December 11, 2009 9:22 PM

I see we're being bombed by the RI Future crowd again tonight.

Of course, if I had to hang out in that intellectual wasteland, I'd take every opportunity to escape over to Anchor Rising, too.

Posted by: BobN at December 11, 2009 9:41 PM

"So Laffey didn't have the guts for a direct challenge to Smith huh?"

It's wasn't a matter of "guts," it was a matter of being pragmatic (something you ought to be familiar with).

The problem with Rory vis-a-vis Laffey in a Republican party primary was a very simple one. Rory (from a political POV) basically had unlimited financial resources which he could have dumped into the gubernatorial campaign, I had heard $4 to $5 million.

While all that spending wouldn't necessarily guarantee him a win in either the primary (were there to be one) and especially in the general election, it certainly would lent his candidacy instant credibility, simply because he would have had the ability to run TV, radio, and print ads 24/7, etc (kind of like what Caprio is doing now).

With Rory out of the way, and barring the entrance into the race of a "Rory-like" figure with a bottomless wallet, I don't see any other big names on the GOP side at all who would be a threat to Laffey in a potential primary situation.

This is absolutely his for the taking now.

Posted by: Will at December 12, 2009 12:54 AM

By the way, I do agree with Bob's statement regarding that Rory's decision to bow out shows that he is an honest, credible person, with a firm grip on reality.

He simply came to the conclusion, I believe quite correctly, that he could not win this particular race, give the various factors involved in running a successful gubernatorial campaign. That doesn't mean he can't consider other offices. I for one would like to see him consider running for General Treasurer, esp. considering the high liklihood of the Democrat primary there, that it is an open seat, and that it would play to his strengths.

Posted by: Will at December 12, 2009 12:58 AM

It is hilarious how afraid Laffey is of a primary. Of course certain people had a chat with Rory Smith and that's why he dropped out. Wouldn't surprise me if Laffey himself had a chat. We know the Governor didn't and his stance on a Laffey candidacy will be very interesting. Carcieri could really hurt Laffey if he is public about the sleazy games Laffey played during his Senatorial run. Laffey will energize the far right of the Republican party. Moderate R's will go with Caprio as will labor and I believe a majority of independents. Laffey's only shot will be if the Dem nominee is Pat Lynch. Unfortunately for Laffey not even a majority of Democrats want a horny 15 yr old like Lynch as Governor.

Posted by: Tim at December 12, 2009 9:03 AM

Those who think that Caprio is a lock as the Democratic nominee have no understanding of the history of the liberal candidates' success in Democratic primaries - can you say Myrth York.
If anyone thinks that Carcieri has any credibility they are nuts. The guy has lied repeatedly to Republican candidates to goad them into running, only to leave them high and dry when it came to an ounce of support. Also, don't forget his bald faced lies to the RIGOP about the $500k from the RNC a few years ago.
If Laffey does run, Carcieri is far more worried about what Laffey has to say about him, than vice versa.
I think Rory Smith understood that, as a Carcieri puppet, his fate was sealed from the getgo.

Posted by: Mike Cappelli at December 12, 2009 9:25 AM

Jeez Mike you seem like you're hoping history repeats itself and Caprio in not the nominee. How come?? Worried your unstable nutjob candidate can't take Caprio?
You should be.
Btw more potential bad news for you Kool-aid guzzlers. If Jack Reed goes to work for Obama in the coming months (as has been rumored for quite a long time) there is a good chance Pat Lynch will look to run for a different office.
Btw be more than happy to take a statewide poll and here's the question:
Who do you find to be the more honest and trustworthy person - Don Carcieri or Steve Laffey?
Believe me, Carcieri can put a torpedo hole into the side of SS Laffey and sink it if he's honest about Laffey's blackmail attempts during the Senate run. But should we be surprised? One of Laffey's biggest supporters is No Show Joe the barber Musciano. Talk about birds of a feather....

Posted by: Tim at December 12, 2009 10:40 AM

Pardon my French, but who gives a crap about personal foibles when the ship is sinking fast? The question is will people go with someones who is part of the problem and who has no real solutions on how to right the ship or someone who will stop at nothing to stem the bleeding and set the ship on the course to prosperity? People are sick and tired of the same old garbage that keeps RI at the bottom of every economic list and on the precipice of insolvency, with the government nothing but a voracious monster looking for ever more tax dollars to consume for naught. Anyone who underestimates the silent majority is in for a rude awakening. I can't wait.

Posted by: MadMom at December 12, 2009 3:31 PM

Thin skinned Tim,
Rory Smith was enlightened to Carcieri's antics about throwing people under the bus for his own personal gain. Ahla, when Gio came out and said "1000 jobs, it's a start". Remember that one? All the people he promised money and support to if they ran, and he gave them zilch. Rory Smith surely got wind of it all.
How about all of the yelling and screaming about the furloughs and Carcieri saved what - 12.5 million bucks over two years, and hamstrings the next governor to a no layoff policy? Are you f'n kidding me? What a jerk!
The guy squeaked out a razor-thin win against a B-list opponent, Fogarty, in what should have been a cakewalk, so that tells you how credible he is.
Your boy is lame. He signs budgets knowing full well they are nowhere near balanced. He is inept.
He has no moral authority to blame the Dems, because he signed them. He's getting overridden if he doesn't sign them , so duh, just don't f'n sign them.
But he is too stupid to understand that.
The phony grandfather act wore off a long time ago Tim. He's now the demented grandfather.

Posted by: Mike Cappelli at December 12, 2009 5:43 PM

You won't believe this but I think actually saw Steve Laffey lurking just the other day.

I was walking down Park Avenue near Cafe Bon Ami and I looked over toward T's and I am sure I saw Laffey lurking over near the Citizen's Bank sign.

I didn't get a real close look but I'm sure it was him. The guy had on bright yellow sweats and a dark blue jacket and baseball cap and he was getting into a big green pickup truck.

At least I think it was him.

Maybe we all need to keep our eyes peeled. You never know where he might be lurking next.


Posted by: Sol Venturi at December 12, 2009 10:15 PM

>>The guy squeaked out a razor-thin win against a B-list opponent, Fogarty, in what should have been a cakewalk, so that tells you how credible he is.<<

The sad part Mike, is that you're probably serious. You sound like one of the ranters from the other blog. Any idea what happened in that election? Republicans got decimated. Two reasons. Someone named "Bush" was at the top of the ticket, and that stupid straight-ticket voting that RI has. Fogarty got 60,000 votes right off the top because of that. Put that 60,000 at a more reasonable number, somewhere in the area that we usually see and Carcieri moves into the >60% numbers.

It was a bloodbath for Republicans that day all around the country. Any win was a big win.

Posted by: Patrick at December 13, 2009 8:32 AM

I'm not the one with the thin skin Mike. Your hysterical rant is hilarious. Why so unhinged? No wonder you're a Laffey boy. So on the one hand your telling us that Carcieri has no cred with anyone and offers no support to anyone yet you're spinning that Rory Smith dropped out of the race because he found out he'd get no support from Carcieri?? Huh?? And a term limited Carcieri was going to throw Rory Smith under the bus for his (Carcieri's) own personal gain and that's another reason Smith dropped out?? Oh my God!! Talk about dementia
Here's the reality. Don Carcieri is a genuine Conservative who won 2 terms in heavily Democrat/union Rhode Island including re-election in the face of a national and statewide Democratic party tsunami in 2006. He's reduced the state workforce by 3,000 over his tenure saving this state huge money in salary/benes/pensions, he's held the line on major taxes thus keeping the Gen Ass in check, done great work in education reform, laid the foundation for green energy/jobs etc., greatly improved our judiciary and state police by appointing top flight people to those positions and he's represented this state with dignity and class, rarities in this neighborhood.
History will view Don Carcieri is a favorable light.
He's been a good Governor.
With regards to your boy Laffey, he's got challenges all over the place. Btw where is the wanderer living these days?? Colorado?? Tennessee?? Boy our Savior's love and concern for Rhode Island shines through doesn't it? lol
As I said earlier, Laffey's only shot is if the horny 15 year old Pat Lynch is the Dem nominee but not even the Democrats are that stupid. I do hope Laffey gets into the race. The entertainment value of having Mr. Unstable around will be awesome.

Posted by: Tim at December 13, 2009 11:10 AM

Rory Smith was given the history of Carcieri's antics and after talking with enough folks, came to understand that he was a mere pawn in Carcieri's little game. That is widely known.
Carcieri has a huge inferiority complex, easily seen when you take a look at the incompetent clowns he has surrounded himself with all throughout his tenure. It's not me that writes those stories contending that fact. It sounds like you're one of them, Tim.

Posted by: Mike Cappelli at December 13, 2009 11:31 AM

I'm still not convinced Carcieri won't be in Laffey's corner if he runs. Don wants another conservative governor so bad that he'd look beyond his past run-ins with him.
Don definitely backs Steve if Sue's calling the shots - he can portray Caprio as Fredo going against the family if he has to.

Posted by: rhody at December 14, 2009 12:59 AM
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