PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — With Congressman David Cicilline’s bombshell announcement that he’s leaving Washington, D.C., to lead the Rhode Island Foundation, the state’s political community is abuzz with the prospect of who might replace him.

Announcements started rolling in within hours of the news coming out, as the Democratic congressman is planning to leave office in the spring and a special election will be held to replace him.

Here’s a breakdown of the people who have already expressed interest, along with others who are either in the mix or being talked about as potential candidates.

This list will be updated as more names emerge and additional announcements are made.


• Sabina Matos, Rhode Island lieutenant governor (D)
• Sandra Cano, state senator, Education Committee chair (D)
Nick Autiello, former state official (D)
Nathan Biah, state representative (D)
John Goncalves, Providence city councilor (D)
• Allen Waters, 2022 Republican nominee for Congress (D)
• Mickeda Barnes, political newcomer (D)


• Gabe Amo, Biden administration official (D)
• Dawn Euer, state senator, Judiciary Committee chair (D)
• Maria Rivera, Central Falls mayor (D)
• Aaron Regunberg, former state representative, 2018 lt. gov. candidate (D)
• Meghan Kallman, state senator (D)
• Nirva LaFortune, former Providence city councilor and 2022 candidate for mayor (D)
• Patrick Lynch, former Rhode Island attorney general (D)
• Dino Autiello, North Providence town councilor (D)
Joey Paolino, energy consultant and former Democratic Party staffer (D)
• Aaron Guckian, former lieutenant governor candidate (R)
• Stephanie Beauté, former secretary of state candidate (D)
• Ted Donovan, progressive activist (D)
• Donald Carlson, Jamestown investor (D)

Not ruling it out

• Liz Beretta-Perik, R.I. Democratic national committeewoman (D)
• Nellie Gorbea, former secretary of state and 2022 gubernatorial candidate (D)
• Jessica de la Cruz, R.I. Senate Minority Leader (R)
• Donald Grebien, Pawtucket mayor (D)
• Bob DaSilva, East Providence mayor (D)
• Marvin Abney, state representative, Finance Committee chair (D)
• Allan Fung, former Cranston mayor, gubernatorial and congressional candidate (R)
• Barbara Ann Fenton-Fung, state representative (R)

Not running

• Helena Foulkes, former CVS executive and 2022 gubernatorial candidate (D)
Joseph Shekarchi, R.I. House speaker (D)
• Jorge Elorza, former Providence mayor (D)
• Angel Taveras, former Providence mayor (D)
• Joe Paolino Jr., former Providence mayor (D)
• Brett Smiley, Providence mayor (D)
• Dan McKee, Rhode Island governor (D)
• Gina Raimondo, U.S. commerce secretary and former governor (D)
• Gregg Amore, Rhode Island secretary of state (D)
• James Diossa, Rhode Island general treasurer (D)
• Xay Khamsyvoravong, Newport mayor (D)
• Clay Pell, former gubernatorial candidate (D)
• Peter Neronha, RI attorney general and former Rhode Island U.S. attorney (D)
• Katherine Kazarian, state representative (D)
• Cynthia Mendes, former state senator and 2022 lieutenant governor candidate (D)
• Christopher Bizzacco, district director for Congressman Cicilline (D)