April 19, 2010

The Center Is Relative, I Suppose

Justin Katz

With a few notable exceptions (ahem), Ian Donnis checked in with some right-leaning Rhode Island groups as we move into election season. It's interesting to note that the two voices for the other side were not people known for their roles as explicit leftists, but as union leaders, with this bold comment:

Robert Walsh is executive director of the National Education Association in Rhode Island and another prominent Democratic activist. He says unions and liberal Democrats don't deserve the blame for Rhode Island's woes.

"You want to give us the keys to the kingdom for a while, we'll show you what good progressive taxation and business development policies can do to turn the state around," Walsh says. "We're, I suppose, a useful target for the people on the other side of the political spectrum, but the gravity in the legislature's clearly in the center."

This chart, to which I linked during the Scott Brown campaign, comes to mind. It shows that RI's Democrats are relatively in the center among Democrats across the country, but that our Republicans are the most liberal around. Which means that the General Assembly is just plain liberal.

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The RI General Assembly is perhaps "in the center" compared to the legislature in Chavez's Venezuela.

Yeah, Teresa Paiva-Weed and Gordon Fox are real centrists. LOL!

The folks from NEARI are always good for a chuckle -- Bob Walsh with his "Baghdad Bob" like earnestness as Ringmaster, and Pat Crowley the Clown for comic relief.

Posted by: Ragin' Rhode Islander at April 19, 2010 11:04 AM

methinks that when Bob Walsh signed on with the NEA he was issued a personal pair of rose-colored glasses ... they've had the keys to the kingdom for nearly 30 years and look where we are!

Posted by: AndyM at April 19, 2010 12:20 PM

8 years of Almond and then almost 8 years of Carcieri and look at where we are.

Posted by: Phil at April 19, 2010 9:39 PM

"8 years of Almond and then almost 8 years of Carcieri and look at where we are."

This is why I hope a Democrat gets elected governor next term. The progressives, GA (who controlled the budget last time I checked) and public unions will no longer be able to use a single person occupying a largely impotent government position as the whipping boy for all that ails the state.

By the way, straight out of out sister city today:


Posted by: Dan at April 19, 2010 10:57 PM

Phil-the Governor is so constitutionally weak in RI that it is hard to blame a Republican governor for the state of the state when he cannot sustain a veto and the GA is virtually entirely a Dem operation.The Supreme Court is perhaps the only place a governor can exert meaningful influence through appointments.
If you want to cite a really bad Republican governor,we can always point to DePrete.
Almond was honest,but lacked energy for th job.
Carcieri was always being undercut by the GA.His executive order on immigration was a good move,and except for the E Verify provision,was just a restatement of past practice that obtained when I was assigned here with INS.

Posted by: joe bernstein at April 20, 2010 3:36 AM

"8 years of Almond and then almost 8 years of Carcieri and look at where we are."

-Months of Speaker Fox
- 7 years of Speaker Murphy
- 10 years of Speaker Harwood
- 5 years of Speaker DeAngelis
- 9 years of Speaker Smith

I'm guessing that's not the problem either, right?

- 2 years of President Paiva-Weed
- 6 years of President Montalbano
- 2 years of President Irons

Your comment was so asinine, that it was trollish. A very typical flawed cause and effect argument made by a typical lefty.

Posted by: Patrick at April 20, 2010 7:53 AM

Phil, the General Assembly has spent the last thirty years enacting the policies which you come here to defend and espouse. Yet when the effects of those policies are palpably visible in the economic condition of the state, you attempt to deflect blame elsewhere.

So now are you thinking that all of those policies are not such a good idea? If not, why are you not willing to allow the General Assembly to take credit for those policies, if they are, indeed, a good idea?

Posted by: Monique at April 20, 2010 8:07 AM

Bob Walsh doesn't ry to sell himself as a centrist.He quite frankly acknowledges he is left leaning.He DOES have a relatively pleasant demeanor in debates and Internet comments.Unlike his Igor,Crowley.

Posted by: joe bernstein at April 20, 2010 9:41 AM
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