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US: Rhode Island (News/Activism)

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  • Rhode Island governor signs gay civil union law despite doubts (says it doesn't go far enough)

    07/02/2011 4:48:51 PM PDT · by markomalley · 10 replies
    Rhode Island's governor on Saturday signed into law a controversial bill legalizing same sex civil unions, but said it does not go far enough toward legalizing gay marriage. Governor Lincoln Chafee, an independent who supports gay marriage, nonetheless signed the measure with the promise that it would move Rhode Island closer to the ultimate goal of legalizing gay marriage. Chafee had urged the General Assembly to consider same-sex marriage this legislative session. But some legislators felt it would be doomed in a state populated by many elderly and Catholic voters, and a civil unions bill was passed instead. Rhode Island...
  • RI passes gay civil unions: bishop says, ‘God will … pass judgment upon our state’

    07/01/2011 2:25:50 AM PDT · by markomalley · 14 replies
    LifeSite ^ | 6/1/11
    PROVIDENCE, June 30, 2011 ( – “Can there be any doubt that Almighty God will, in His own time and way, pass judgment upon our state, its leaders and citizens, for abandoning His commands and embracing public immorality?” That was how Providence Bishop Thomas Tobin reacted to today’s passage of legislation approving homosexual civil unions in Rhode Island. The Rhode Island Senate approved the final version of the bill by a vote of 21 to 16. Gov. Lincoln Chafee, who advocated the legalization of homosexual “marriage” in his inaugural address, is expected to sign it into law. The bill was...
  • Rhode Island legislature passes same-sex civil union bill

    06/29/2011 6:28:25 PM PDT · by Hawk720 · 7 replies ^ | 06/29/2011 | CNN Breaking
    Less than a week after New York became the nation's sixth state to legalize same-sex marriage, Rhode Island state lawmakers on Wednesday voted in favor of a bill that permits civil unions between gay and lesbian couples. The measure, which passed the state Senate by a count of 21-16, is widely seen as a compromise intended to provide same-same couples with added rights and benefits, while also preventing an expanded legal definition of marriage. The legislation, which passed overwhelmingly in the state's lower house on May 19, affords same-sex couples a host of new state tax breaks, health-care benefits and...
  • Update: Netroots Nation coming to RI, bars opposing group

    06/22/2011 5:03:00 AM PDT · by CT Hillbilly · 5 replies
    Paul Grimaldi Email Journal staff and wire reports PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- More than 2,500 progressive political activists will come to Providence in June 2012 to take part in the annual Netroots Nation conference. But the group of progressive bloggers wants no competition for attention when it comes to town. The conference's organizers have taken steps that would keep a conservative group's traditional counter-event at a distance. Raven Brooks, Netroots Nation's executive director, said Tuesday the progressive group has a non-compete clause in its contracts with the Rhode Island Convention Center and two Providence hotels. The conservative group RightOnline has staged...
  • Netroots Nation Wants Counter-Event at a Distance (No compete clause to block RightOnline)

    06/21/2011 8:30:21 PM PDT · by kristinn · 5 replies · 1+ views
    AP via The Boston Globe ^ | Tuesday, June 21, 2011 | Erika Niedowski
    Organizers of the liberal Netroots Nation conference to be held in Providence in summer 2012 have taken steps to keep a traditional conservative counter-event at a distance. The conservative conference RightOnline, a project of the Virginia-based group Americans for Prosperity, has staged its convention in the same city around the same time as Netroots Nation since 2008. Raven Brooks, Netroots Nation's executive director, said Tuesday the group had a noncompete clause in its contracts with the Rhode Island Convention Center and two Providence hotels. "Good luck finding a venue in 2012," he tweeted over the weekend, in reference to RightOnline....
  • Republican Group Targets Its Own Party (McCain attacks conservatives, defends Lincoln Chaffee)

    06/18/2011 3:04:40 PM PDT · by rabscuttle385 · 25 replies · 1+ views
    NPR ^ | 2011-06-16 | Liz Halloran
    It wasn't long ago that the conservative, free-market Club for Growth was viewed by a swath of Republicans as a furtive, well-heeled enemy whose efforts to purge moderates from the GOP had to be thwarted. The club and its agenda are "not representative of the Republican Party," the director of the Republican Main Street Partnership, a group of moderate GOP congressional members, once said, adding: "We raise money on a daily basis to defeat them." When asked this week about the Republican animus the group faced in the recent past, Club for Growth executive director David Keating replied: "That sounds...
  • Freedom in the 50 States; An Index of Personal and Economic Freedom

    06/17/2011 5:27:30 PM PDT · by Eric Blair 2084 · 48 replies
    Mercatus Center, George Mason University ^ | June 7, 2011 | Jason Sorens, William Ruger
    This study comprehensively ranks the American states on their public policies that affect individual freedoms in the economic, social, and personal spheres. It updates, expands, and improves upon our inaugural 2009 Freedom in the 50 States study. For this new edition, we have added more policy variables (such as bans on trans fats and the audio recording of police, Massachusetts’s individual health-insurance mandate, and mandated family leave), improved existing measures (such as those for fiscal policies, workers’ compensation regulations, and asset-forfeiture rules), and developed specific policy prescriptions for each of the 50 states based on our data and a survey...
  • Edward Achorn: How does George Nee intend to ‘back’ us ‘off’?

    06/15/2011 3:44:30 AM PDT · by CT Hillbilly · 6 replies
    Senate leaders and labor officials have made it painfully clear they do not want you to know about the sweet deals given to college dropout Stephen Iannazzi, the taxpayer-funded $88,112-a-year “special assistant” to Senate Majority Leader Dominick Ruggerio. Indeed, it appears they may be engaged in some kind of sub-rosa program to silence questions. Stephen is the son of Donald Iannazzi, the business manager for Local 1033, the Laborers International Union affiliate that employs 30-year-old lawyer Charles Ruggerio. Charles is the son of Senator Ruggerio. Donald received an annual salary of $212,658, plus $53,212 in “other compensation,” in 2009, according...
  • R.I. critics say Secure Communities program invites racial profiling

    06/11/2011 5:34:46 PM PDT · by moonshinner_09 · 15 replies
    Providence Journal ^ | June 12, 2011 | Karen Lee Ziner
    On the afternoon of May 1, nearly 200 people in school buses arrived at the Pawtucket home of Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin. But the event was hardly a school picnic. Carrying signs that said, “Racist Policies Not in the Public Interest,” the activists demonstrated against Kilmartin’s implementation of the controversial federal Secure Communities program, aimed at identifying and deporting the most dangerous criminal illegal immigrants. They visited Kilmartin’s neighbors, knocking on doors along Armistice Boulevard and handing out leaflets asking them to pressure Kilmartin to “rethink” his policy. The program is supposed to make communities safe; however, “Secure Communities...
  • Senate GOP allows judicial confirmation of ex-Planned Parenthood director

    05/10/2011 8:04:14 AM PDT · by george76 · 10 replies
    Redstate ^ | May 10th , 2011 | bk
    As so often seem to be the case, the GOP doesn’t follow the Democratic playbook when it comes to obstruction. They caved when it came to a vote last week on the nomination of Jack McConnell as a US District Court Judge. He’s only 52 or 53, so we can look forward to decades of his rulings. Among the items on his resume are being the unpaid director of Planned Parenthood of Rhode Island and being involved in successful tobacco litigation, for which he’s still due to receive $2-3M/year for another 13 years. He’s been a trial lawyer for 25...
  • Senate Approves Former Planned Parenthood Director as Judge (McCain leads RINOs for infanticide)

    05/09/2011 2:23:49 AM PDT · by rabscuttle385 · 55 replies · 1+ views ^ |
    The U.S. Senate today overcame a Republican filibuster and approved a former Planned Parenthood abortion business director, John McConnell, as a federal judge in Rhode Island. Senators voted 63-33 to surpass the 60-vote threshold necessary to stop the filibuster and approve the nomination of McConnell’s nomination to the District Court for the District of Rhode Island. his nomination previously cleared the Senate Judiciary Committee recently on a party-line 11-7 vote. Senate Republicans joining all Democrats to end debate included Scott Brown of Massachusetts, Susan Collins of Maine, Lyndsey Graham of South Carolina, Johnny Isakson of Georgia, Mark Kirk of Illinois,...
  • Trial Lawyer Confirmed for Judge Seat . . . By the Skin of his Teeth

    05/05/2011 8:30:44 AM PDT · by AtlasStalled · 8 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | 05/05/11 | Ashby Jones
    Well, it wasn’t pretty, but Rhode Island trial lawyer John McConnell was confirmed to take over a vacant federal judgeship seat in the Ocean State on Wednesday. * * * GOP leaders opposed McConnell, citing his record as a trial lawyer in cases against businesses. Republicans also said McConnell was less than truthful in his testimony to the Senate.
  • R.I. House Minority Leader Watson, R-East Greenwich, charged with DUI (Booze & Weed )

    05/01/2011 10:52:25 AM PDT · by csvset · 20 replies
    Projo,com ^ | April 26, 2011 | Katherine Gregg
    PROVIDENCE — House Republican Leader Robert Watson, the trenchant and bitingly acerbic leader of the tiny GOP bloc in the overwhelmingly Democratic House of Representatives in Rhode Island, is facing charges of driving under the influence of alcohol and marijuana possession after a random stop by Connecticut police as he was driving his pickup truck through a checkpoint in East Haven, Conn., Friday night. A police report said his eyes were “extremely glassy and bloodshot,” his speech slurred, and he had difficulty performing a series of sobriety tests. After handcuffing Watson and placing him under arrest, the arresting police officer...
  • Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence urges Assembly to reject civil unions

    04/29/2011 10:54:19 PM PDT · by AustralianConservative · 1+ views
    The Providence Journal ^ | April 30, 2011 | Katherine Gregg
    PROVIDENCE — After playing a major role in the defeat of same-sex marriage, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence is now urging state lawmakers to reject the compromise that House Speaker Gordon D. Fox is backing: civil unions. In an unsigned editorial in this week’s Rhode Island Catholic, the Diocese says: “We hope that those members of the Rhode Island General Assembly who have consistently supported traditional marriage will stay steadfast in their opposition to the legal recognition of same-sex relationships as either marriage or civil unions. “Government sanctioned civil unions cannot be supported by those who truly understand the...
  • RI House speaker: Gay marriage bill won't pass

    04/28/2011 2:32:13 AM PDT · by fwdude · 5 replies
    Associated Press ^ | 04/27/2011 | David Klepper
    PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Efforts to extend marriage rights to gay couples in Rhode Island suffered a decisive setback Wednesday when a key legislative champion said he was abandoning a push to pass gay marriage legislation this year.
  • Anti-Gun Legislation Introduced in the Rhode Island Senate

    04/21/2011 10:29:26 AM PDT · by neverdem · 3 replies
    NRA-ILA ^ | April 20, 2011 | NA
    ·11250 Waples Mill Road ·   Fairfax, Virginia 22030    ·800-392-8683   Anti-Gun Legislation Introduced in the Rhode Island Senate   Wednesday, April 20, 2011   Anti-gun Senate Bill 831 has been introduced in the state Senate and referred to the Senate Judiciary Committee.  S 831 would make it illegal for a minor to simply possess a firearm or ammunition, whether intentional or otherwise.  Sponsored by state Senator Harold M. Metts (D-6), S 831 is the Senate companion to House Bill 5671. While this legislation appears to make only a slight change in current law, it could have grave ramifications for those prosecuted...
  • RI group to rally in support of new taxes

    04/17/2011 11:51:15 AM PDT · by massmike · 26 replies ^ | 04/17/2011 | AP
    Rhode Islanders opposed to more cuts in state spending are rallying to support calls to raise taxes. Ocean State Action says it will hold a rally Monday afternoon in front of the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce. Ocean State Action Executive Director Kate Brock says her group will recommend proposals to raise new revenue for road projects, schools and public safety. Brock says lawmakers should consider raising income taxes for those making more than $500,000 and closing tax loopholes that allow big companies to use out-of-state subsidiaries to reduce their state taxes.
  • Ill. congressman visits Providence to talk about immigration policy

    04/03/2011 2:57:33 PM PDT · by moonshinner_09 · 11 replies
    Providence Journa ^ | April 3, 2011 | Tracy Breton
    PROVIDENCE –– U.S. Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez, D-Ill., and hundreds of Rhode Island immigrants, both legal and illegal, gathered at a town-hall style meeting Saturday afternoon to draw attention to the toll that deportation is taking on families. In just one year with Barack Obama as president, Gutierrez pointed out, 400,000 people were deported from the United States –– more people than any other president has deported, he asserted. And most of them, Gutierrez said, are not violent criminals, but law-abiding, hard-working people. Speaking almost entirely in Spanish to a standing-room-only audience that packed the auditorium of the former Oliver...
  • Longtime bachelor Patrick Kennedy, 43, is engaged

    03/28/2011 8:55:24 PM PDT · by massmike · 54 replies ^ | 03/28/2011 | AP
    Patrick Kennedy, the 43-year-old former Rhode Island congressman and son of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, is engaged to be married to a New Jersey middle school teacher. Kennedy, a lifelong bachelor, got engaged Saturday in Rhode Island to Amy Petitgout, former aide Sean Richardson said Monday. No wedding date has been set.
  • NH, RI, NJ buck trend, propose cigarette tax cut

    03/18/2011 4:52:43 AM PDT · by arderkrag · 18 replies
    AP via Yahoo! News ^ | 03/18/2011 | Unknown
    CONCORD, N.H. – Bucking a national trend of raising cigarette taxes, New Hampshire, New Jersey and Rhode Island have considered reducing theirs, hoping to draw smokers from other states and increase revenue. Supporters argue reducing the tax by a dime would make New Hampshire more competitive with Maine, Vermont and Massachusetts, while opponents say that even if the state experienced higher sales as a result it still would lose millions of dollars in revenue. It's very unusual for states to lower the tax, University of Illinois at Chicago economics professor Frank Chaloupka says. The increase in sales isn't enough to...