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Zaccaria: fiscal conservatism will help GOP legislative candidates in November

January 26, 2012

Legislative Democrats, as I’ve noted before, could campaign from a position of strength this year, due to how in 2011 they knocked down Governor Chafee’s tax plan and overhauled the state pension system. But state GOP chairman Mark Zaccaria disputes the idea that the state GOP may have lost its appeal as an opposition party.

“I would argue that the reforms that have been instituted in the recent session, especially the special session, are just the beginning. They are half-measures, if that,” Zaccaria said during a taping this morning of RIPR’s Political Roundtable, “and that much more needs to be done to really start tackling the tough nut of municipal pension in this session. And there’s going to be blood on the floor.”

During the legislative lunch sponsored today by the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce, the business crowd cheered legislative Democrats for passing the pension overhaul. That’s just the latest accolade in a cascade of local and national publicity for Democratic Treasurer Gina Raimondo and Democratic lawmakers.

But Zaccaria insists that RI Republicans, after struggling for years to make gains at the General Assembly, still have an opening due to the state’s ongoing fiscal woes:

Rhode Islanders will be treated to an example of the fact that we’re out of money, and that when you’re out of money you have to act differently than when you’ve got money in your pocket.

As Republicans, we are going to be looking at a fiscally conservative message that is, I believe, the message we have to all embrace today when we are in very, very difficult times — especially in a government that has grown at the state and the federal level far beyond our means.

Political Roundtable airs at 5:40 and 7:40 Friday morning, and can also be found online.

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