September 24, 2011

No Record May Be Better than the Record We've Seen

Justin Katz

I've been formulating some thoughts about a question that's been lingering around the aggregate Dan Gordon controversy: How could this happen?

I still intend to put an answer down in writing — although my focus has understandably been on answering the same question with respect to paying my bills. In the meantime, Monique has offered an excellent summary in the comments to Anchor Rising's latest post on the matter (emphasis in original):

... shall we review what seventy years of Democrat rule in this state have given us? Fifth highest state and local tax burden. Academic achievement in the bottom 20%. Roads and bridges near the bottom of the list. THE worst business climate in the country, naturally leading to a lousy economy and high unemployment.

Given all that - all of which was known before the election, unlike Rep Gordon's checkered past - why would Tiverton have voted for a Dem for District 71?

More importantly, why would they vote for one next year? See, that's the problem for you and the Democrat who will run for this seat next year. All the Republicans in the world with the worst pasts you can imagine don't change the damage and havoc that Democrat legislators, even with choir boy pasts, have inflicted on this state.

Comments, although monitored, are not necessarily representative of the views Anchor Rising's contributors or approved by them. We reserve the right to delete or modify comments for any reason.

We need to hammer home the last time Republicans in R.I., ran the state government was 1939-41; when he held the governorship and both legislative chambers. In addition, the people need to prove they are willing to consider voting Republican in most areas of R.I.,.
I cannot but help of thinking about North Providence. For all appearances the GOP ran credible candidates for the town council recently for the three vacancies caused by now convicted Democratic officeholders in that town. They replaced them with three new Democrats. I am not saying their replacements are questionable but you would think that people would be receptive to have a form of "checks & balances" in a partisan way. The last local North Providence Republican I recall won in the 1970's?

Posted by: Scott Bill Hirst at September 24, 2011 9:59 AM

It is not likely Rep. Gordon will be in next term of the legislature starting in 2013. It appears, he may likely not stay to the end of this term.
Whether he get expelled or not, his effectiveness would seem to be very limited.

Posted by: Scott Bill Hirst at September 24, 2011 10:03 AM


Are you saying when you agree with Monique's comments that a candidate's past is no indicator of the nature of their character and that character has no bearing on their fitness as an officeholder? Agreement with a certain set of political positions is enough to disregard any negative aspects of the candidate makeup? It seems in Monique's case any warm body if it's not a Democrat is just fine with her. What about you?

Posted by: Phil at September 24, 2011 10:19 AM

Rhode Island Republicans are essentially third party candidates, so they suffer from many of the same problems - lack of resources and the loss of better candidates to the mainstream party or other career paths. It becomes a vicious cycle.

It's the same reason why most of the libertarians you'll meet in everyday life are normal, successful, intelligent, clean-cut people, but the Libertarian candidates are raving, neck-bearded 9-11 truthers with eight convictions on their record. Nobody respectable wants to get their name dragged through the muck over a lost cause so you get the loonies and degenerates who are left.

Not that Rhode Island Democrats are a big improvement, being the inevitable corrupt, authoritarian result of 70-year dynasty, but they know how to keep their machine running smoothly.

Posted by: Dan at September 24, 2011 10:24 AM

If we could start over, a No Party system would be the way to go.

Posted by: michael at September 24, 2011 11:09 AM

Thank you Phil. I had a whole other interpretation of Monique's post. You certainly cleared it up for me. It clearly proves that you are more of putz than I first thought. Way to twist it.

Posted by: Max Diesel at September 24, 2011 12:31 PM

"why would Tiverton have voted for a Dem for District 71?>

The answers are almost boundless:

We've been Democrats for generations;

Democrats are the "party of the people";

Repiblicans only look out for the "fat cats".

You've heard it all before, ad nauseum.

Posted by: Warrington Faust at September 24, 2011 7:25 PM


Even though you folks are always telling me that only "progressives" resort to name calling, can you explain to me how I twisted Monique's comments? The question was put to Justin, but feel free to jump in with your sober and respectful comments just the same.
Also Max I'm sure you meant to include an "a" before "putz". Oh does pointing that out make me more of one?
And this is for Justin and only Justin. I just bought some contractor garbage bags for my non existent company. If you need some I'll be glad to donate a few. I use them for emergency rain gear aboard my non existent work boat.

Posted by: Phil at September 24, 2011 10:47 PM


I appreciate the offer, but I do have regular garbage bags (and could probably get away with slipping a couple of the company-bought contractor bags in my van), but the problem is that Tiverton government has been so mismanaged for so long that the town can't pay to cap the landfill in a few years (after having decades of notice). Therefore, they've started forcing residents to buy these really cheaply made and expensive garbage bags, and the rubbish collectors won't pick up garbage that isn't in them (and the town won't accept it if residents attempt to deliver it themselves without the bags).

Posted by: Justin Katz at September 24, 2011 11:14 PM


That's too bad. I'm planning to go to the town dump tomorrow. It's fairly well run and relatively cheap and it's a meeting place of sorts. No picking though, only discarding.

Posted by: Phil at September 24, 2011 11:35 PM

Dan Gordon needs help. Spiritual help. he does not need the type of defense and help Monique offers- the most spurious and ridiculous. His place in the public square no longer has anything to do with his stilted and darkened room conspiritorial nonsensical politics. It has to do with him -the person. I think some of you that know him personally would be more of friend if you left the political realm and moved into the personal.

Posted by: David S at September 25, 2011 8:18 PM

David S. when someone steps into public life, they step in with all their skeletons and bagage. When they choose to hide some of those things, their character determines how they respond if and when the truth comes out. If they respond truthfully, then I think it is possible, maybe even appropriate, to take the approach of allowing "spritual" healing and let the guy get through the ordeal. But in the case of Dan Gordon, it just seems he wants to bluff his way through, which just makes him more and more unbelievable. If he doesn't step down, he shoud be removed from office. He's lost all credibility.

I hold the RIGOP most responsibile. He may have been sincerely trying to turn his life around and may have sincerely felt he was ready to step into a new way of lving. But his way of responding demonstrates he has not reached a level of spiritual maturity required to continue as a leader. The RIGOP would have avoided this whole ordeal if they better vetted candidates. It is very easy to check criminal records and verify military service. Monique has a point about the choice Tiverton voters had. But the RIGOP could have spared good Republicans this embarrassment if they wouldn't be so eager to just run anybody for the sake of running any body.

Posted by: Douglas Farnum at September 25, 2011 9:40 PM

Any person who is a party member or unaffilated can file as a member of a party at present. The parties have the legal right of granting endorsement however. It is best for people who know how Rep. Gordon ran as a Republican.
BTW, he cannot affilate as a Libertarian as it is NOT an official party in Rhode Island. But he is free to use that name. Only Democrat, Republican, and Moderate are protected words. This part of the post is in regards to a Libertarian overture to Rep. Gordon. Any candidate can use three words other than the recognized political parties to label their slogan or philosophy.

Posted by: Scott Bill Hirst at September 26, 2011 4:30 PM

Second word member should be candidate in first sentence of my previous post.

Posted by: Scott Bill Hirst at September 26, 2011 4:32 PM

Well said Douglas Farnum. Dan Gordon should resign for his lying and the GA should remove him if he does not resign. Whatever you think of the GA as presently constituted, it still should be in everyone's interest for that body to do the right thing.

Posted by: David S at September 26, 2011 6:03 PM

For the record, I think Gordon should resign and have for some time. I do not, however, think the General Assembly should remove him. A body controlled by more than 2/3 Democrats should not set the precedent of removing a Republican.

However, I wouldn't oppose an effort by Tiverton voters to replace him.

Posted by: Justin Katz at September 26, 2011 6:44 PM

I haven't seen any defense of Gordon by any contributor on this site. Did I miss it? Can someone direct me to that post?

I agree he should resign but if he refuses, it should be up to his district voters to remove him. Is it possible in this state that Gordon is the first guy to ever qualify to be banished from the GA by this little known legislative procedure or is it that he's the first Republican to qualify?

Posted by: Max Diesel at September 26, 2011 8:16 PM

You don't think that a legislative body should have the right of censure? Surely, you jest.

By the way, what did you think of the Clinton impeachment?

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at September 27, 2011 2:01 AM

Justin called RI "the worst business climate in the country". For his information, RI ranks #14 of the 50 states in percentage of millionaire residents.

Guess what, more millionaires per capita than Texas!

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at September 27, 2011 2:25 AM

OTL-WTF??How many of those millionaires own job rich businesses here?
John Hazen White Jr.comes to mind and so does Alan Hassenfeld.
FWIW my eye doctor runs a small business(the only non VA medical care I get)and he employs a LOT of people-really more than he needs,but he's a real human being) and I hope he makes as much as he can,saving people's sight and all.

Posted by: joe bernstein at September 27, 2011 3:01 PM

We should all follow the example of John Hazen White Jr. {Have a wealthy dad who leaves you a factory.}

Posted by: Phil at September 27, 2011 6:27 PM

OK,let's condemn John Hazen White for inheriting a company which he is expanding locally.
Meanwhile,I wonder what inheritance pigs like Linc Chafee and Sheldon Whitehouse have ever done to create jobs in the private sector with their money,very likely originating in some aspect of the slave trade?

Posted by: joe bernstein at September 27, 2011 7:10 PM
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