So widely known is the fact that Rhode Island’s lieutenant governor gig is just a six-figure waiting room for politicians that the late Bob Healey gained a significant local following on the promise of eliminating the office from within. Now the politician who currently occupies that State House bean-bag chair — and who used to actually do something in his job as Cumberland mayor — is showing how afraid he is of losing it.
In a bizarre and embarrassing display, Lieutenant Governor Daniel McKee sent out a press release condemning the Gaspee Project for going after his opposition. Worse, he spouted dark, untrue allegations about the organization’s funding, which at best indicates his willingness to attack his fellow Rhode Islanders in full knowledge that he has no idea whether what he says is true.
What a disappointment. McKee must be very afraid of Rhode Island’s progressives if he’s that willing to discard his integrity and join them in their delusional, divisive rhetoric. Last month, McKee said he’d campaign by “comparing what I stand for against whoever runs [against] me.” Well, that must not be going very well if he’s finding that the only way he can grab attention is to run against his opposition’s bogeyman.
I’m not directly involved in Gaspee’s activities, but I’m pretty sure that any support they have shown for McKee is motivated primarily out of opposition to far-left candidate Aaron Regunberg. It would have been nice to believe that a successful campaign would at least have let a worthwhile politician stay (somewhat) relevant in a useless office. Now, the unexciting question for voters who don’t want to pay Regunberg $117,637 to continue his career as a professional activist is whether an empty suit can make an impression in a bean bag.