Speaker Mattiello, Why Give Gina Raimondo’s Political Career An Enormous Boost Via Tolls?


Dear Speaker Mattiello:

I listened with interest to your interview yesterday morning on WPRO with Gene Valicenti in which you said that you support “a” toll plan.

We won’t linger on the reasons why a toll, of any amount, on any vehicle, would be a really bad idea economically and politically for everyone in the state (except Governor Raimondo). Economically bad: it would drag down the state’s economy by adding to the cost of living, it would exacerbate the state’s business climate and it would be remarkably wasteful as half of the revenue would be completely squandered on interest and gantries. (You should be aware, by the way, that the REMI study produced earlier this month at Governor Raimondo’s order is viewed by everyone with any intelligence as completely skewed and its conclusion as derisively unbelievable.) Politically unwise – Tolls are astonishingly unpopular, as witnessed by the public uproar over the attempt, last year, to toll just one bridge way off in a corner of East Bay. Tolls would be used like a cudgel next year against every legislator who votes for them.

But important as all of that is, it is secondary to the main issue that I would put to you. Tolls would enormously benefit one person and one person only: Governor Gina Raimondo. You have undoubtedly heard the rumors that she will seek higher office rather than re-election in three years. Whatever her plans, whether she seeks the political promotion in three years or seven, if a toll plan of any kind is implemented, her political career – and no one else’s – would receive a gigantic boost, financial and otherwise, as hundreds of millions of dollars in a construction surge would turn the members of certain trades unions into her adoring slaves and contributions – some of them from the tolls themselves in the form of wages! – would flow lavishly into her campaign coffers from those unions and their members. Is there any question that this, in turn, would expand into support from national unions as the governor moves on politically from Rhode Island?

Forgive me for being direct here, Mr. Speaker. Why would you permit this to happen at every other Rhode Islander’s expense? Even stipulating for a moment that one or two other officials may benefit in a mild way from a toll plan, such a benefit would be utterly dwarfed by the out-sized boost to Governor Raimondo and her political career. It is impossible to believe, sir, that you are a supporter of Governor Raimondo’s political career to the point that you would facilitate such an enormous boon to it, to the corresponding detriment of the state.

Thank you for any consideration you might give to this matter.


Monique Chartier

  • ShannonEntropy

    You have undoubtedly heard the rumors that she will seek higher office rather than re-election in three years

    My dearest Monique,

    Exactly which “higher office” do you think Gina will be gunning for next ??

    Not getting re·elected will mean she leaves office in 2019
    … perhaps she will try a Lincoln-Chafee-like moon shot for POTUS ??

    Only You or the Magic Eight Ball™ know for sure !!

    Kindest Regards


    copyright © 2015 shannon_werx

    • Max

      The longer she stays in office, the less likely she’ll be able to claim how she “turned the State of Rhode Island around.” I don’t have a crystal ball but I’m betting she’s being urged to run against any one of our insignificant Congressional delegation.

      • ShannonEntropy

        Well she lives on LaProv’s east side on Morris Ave in the 1st District so it’ll have to be vs David

        Of course, she could pull the ol’ Carpet-bagger trick like ‘Patches’ Kennedy; Billary; or even Dick Cheney … and move a few miles west into the 2nd
        and take on Langevin … but would she really want to beat up on a guy in a wheel·chair ??

      • Tom

        That would be a dream come true!! Anybody would be better that Ciccillne!

    • dennis

      Hello…….sorry but whats going to happen is jack reed is going to leave to be with his family and ramondo is going to appoint herself to his spot…I figure 2017.

      • ShannonEntropy

        Jack turns 66 yrs old a few days after my own birthday, on November 12th

        He is in perfect health for his age, from all accounts. He holds one of the safest seats in the US Senate and could easily serve *way* past 2020

        He recently turned down Obozo’s offer to serve as Sec·Def rather than give up his Senator-for-Life Seat

        What makes you think he is gonna retire any time soon ??

        • Dennis

          Hi shannon…I know gina and jack are besties. Jack has young kids and he wants to be with them. understood he could stay a senator forever. congress is broken. gina is looking to get out of the govenorship.she is pandering to the unions big time because she wants to leave in good standings with them. She will need the support from the unions to get elected when she has to run on her own for the senate seat.She is trying to get people to work with a 1.1 billion bond that is going to kill this state. Not only that she will need to raise funds from wall street and whats better than putting out a bond without voter approval at the tune of 600 mil in interest and fees. None of what she is doing is logical. What is she going to have is gridlock when they cant even repave a road without gridlock. Who in their right mind would give 600 mil in interest to get 500 mil. You cant even use the cash all at once so what are u going to do with it. Just a small suggestion…Lower the tax on diesil fue instead of tolling. All the trucks would fuel up in RI. We could tripple our tax