Updated: Wednesday, 03 Nov 2010, 5:58 PM EDT
Published : Wednesday, 03 Nov 2010, 5:58 PM EDT
The big Republican gains felt across the U.S. this Election Day were not as evident in Rhode Island.
For the first time in years, not one Republican will hold a top statewide office in Rhode Island.
"Republicans over the years have held onto the governorship, which really kept them active in the state," says Eyewitness News political analyst Joe Fleming.
"But right now, the highest ranking Republican is the mayor of Warwick and the mayor of Cranston, and the mayor of Warwick [Scott Avedisian] is a Lincoln Chafee supporter."
Chafee, an independent, edged Republican John Robitaille by just under ten thousand votes to win a tight four-way race for governor.
"Republicans are really hurting in the state," continues Fleming. "There are only down to about 18 or 19 people in the General Assembly. They are really hurting at this point. They have to regroup."
Fleming believes part of the problem lies in the reluctance of the national GOP to fund local Republicans.
"They feel it's probably not a good investment of money. I think if they felt it was a good investment, they would have done it this time."
In addition to Robitaille's narrow loss in the Rhode Island Gubernatorial race, GOP candidate John Loughlin came up just short in race for U.S. House District 1, losing to Providence Mayor David Cicilline.
"[The national Republican party] put money in for John Robitaille at the end, but it came too late. He needed money earlier on. Same thing with John Loughlin. These people need seed money to get their campaigns going. Dumping money in the last two weeks gives them a boost, but it doesn't give them a big enough boost to win the election. You saw that last night."
Even the Tea Party movement, which made waves nationally, had little impact on Rhode Island's political landscape.
"A couple of people they supported in the General Assembly races won, a number of them were already there, they were incumbents. They did pick up a couple of open seats, but it was not a night where you thought you were going to see big changes in the General Assembly here in Rhode Island. They had very little impact."
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