The Governor’s Progressive Priorities

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A recent Providence Journal editorial highlights yet another indication that the administration of Democrat Governor Gina Raimondo isn’t exactly exhibiting a casual competence when it comes to the basic operations of state government. This time, the problem is the company with which the state has contracted to ensure that people in need are able to make it to their medical appointments, and the House Oversight Committee, led by Representative Patricia Serpa (D, West Warwick), is looking into it:

It has not escaped Ms. Serpa’s attention that there is a pattern of problems in state contracting. For many years, the executive branch has had trouble drafting strong contracts (without requiring an abundance of costly change orders), making sure services are properly implemented, and providing sufficient oversight once services have commenced. At the same time, the Raimondo administration has dramatically increased the number of public-relations people on its payroll.

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Public-relations people on the payroll is just the start. Apparently, the governor also has plenty of time for things like this:

Gov. Gina Raimondo is all-in on a statewide bag ban and past opponents of the concept aren’t objecting.

Raimondo gave her support Feb. 14 at the final meeting of the Task Force to Tackle Plastics, an advisory board she created last July with the mission of cutting plastic pollution in the state.

That’s progressives (like socialists) for you: trying to save the world while letting those who rely on their competence for day-to-day operations suffer. The problem, at its bottom, is that people are willing to pay for certain services from government (for themselves and on behalf of others), but not so much for insider excesses and progressive schemes. So, to make way for the excesses and schemes, government has to scrimp on the things for which people are willing to pay so there’s money left over for the things for which they probably wouldn’t.

And at the end of the day, ensuring that the medical transportation vehicles run on time isn’t all that exciting.



  • Merle The Monster

    If you really cared about the poor not receiving services from Government and competency in general from Government and I suspect that you do not , how can you justify your vote for the current President.

  • Joe Smith

    One would think given the Governor is intelligent and supposedly experienced in assessing good management as an investment manager heavily involved with start-ups that she would have a better grasp on surrounding herself with competent bureaucrats. Ironically, the Governor was featured in a Governing.com article on appointing a state “COO” to help the chief executive with the transition to be an executive. In the article, Gov Raimondo looked to TN Gov Haslem who hired a person with three decades of management experience from IBM.

    What “managers” has Raimondo hired? Let’s see – a few out of state mostly political policy types (one who was part of a bankrupt social services agency in NYC); then she adds a clearly political consultant person to be chief of staff. She puts a failed politician as head of the state’s largest agency. When that agency fails miserably, whom does she pick – her political chief of staff and adds a Providence political policy person. When that fails, her next pick is well, another chief of staff with a consulting background. Commerce person was again an out of state education commission whose development experience was in a vastly different situation. Education pick was a policy wonk from NY. State police pick was for the optics.

    Her smartest picks were keeping holdovers or reruns folks like DEM head and DOA director. Clearly she feels no backlash from UHIP, DCYF debacles, or a rudderless education department. She also hasn’t demonstrated leadership – just soundbites on issues that make her chameleon – like to whomever emerges from the Democratic primary.

    I’m not sure I’d generalize to a situation about progressives and allocation of resources – the MTM contract was generous indeed. I think it’s just we have Governor who isn’t a natural leader and her management style is to surround herself with fellow smart “yes” advisers. Reminds me of the quote by Speaker of the House Sam Rayburn in Halberstam’s book about the Whiz Kids and Kennedy’s initial circle of the best and the brightest – ‘”Well, Lyndon, you may be right and they may be every bit as intelligent as you say, but I’d feel a whole let better about them if just one of them had run for sheriff once.”

  • D. S. Crockett

    Look no further to the model of Progressive government then the People’s Republic of China. These progressive fools who operate under the guise of progress still believe in centralized government despite many failures and despite living in a country that gave the world a government based on individual liberty. Beware, their methods to power, which include but are not limited to division, shaming, government dependence and class envy all antithesis to the model of individual liberty created by our founders. Go figure, some people never learn.

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