The West Broadway Neighborhood Association (WBNA) held three candidate forums on Tuesday evening. All but one of the candidates competing in the Democratic Primary on Wednesday for the positions of Mayor of Providence, City Council Ward 13, State Senate District 5 and State Representative District 9 were in attendance.
The first forum featured the four candidates for Providence City Council Ward 13, Raymond Berarducci III, Cyd McKenna, Rachel Miller and Leslie Papp II. This is an open seat since Councilmember Bryan Principe declined to seek re-election.
The second forum featured two of the three candidates for the position of Mayor of Providence, including incumbent Jorge Elorza and challenger Kobi Dennis. Candidate for Mayor Robert DeRobbio did not attend the forum.
The third forum featured Candidates for Rhode Island State Senate District 5 and House District 9. This included incumbent State Representative Anastasia Williams (District 5) and her challenger Dwayne Keys, and incumbent State Senator Paul Jabour (District 9) and his two challengers, Samuel Bell and Nicholas Autiello II.
Each forum began with one minute for each candidate to introduce themselves, followed by questions. The video below features the answers to the questions, but I occasionally included the video of the question being asked because there was some nuance of interaction that might be lost if I left it out.
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The opening remarks of Nicholas Autiello II:
The opening remarks of Samuel Bell:
The opening remarks of Paul Jabour:
The opening remarks of Dwayne Keys:
The opening remarks of Anastasia Williams:
Q1. WBNA went door to door with a survey as part of our ongoing strategic plan. Results show that among the top concerns for neighbors is neighborhood affordability.
Part 1 of our question: Tell us the policy initiative you will spearhead to take this on
Part 2: What can WNBA and neighbors do to help you make this into law?
Q2. A question about Anastasia Williams. I’ve included the video of Dylan Connolly asking the question as it is very complex and full of very specific accusations. Things get very heated in this clip.
Q3. Given the decrease in civility on the national political scene, what are your responsibilities as a candidate to be respectful to your opponents, and have you lived up to them?
Q4. In light of Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court, will you commit to cosponsoring the bills codifying Roe v Wade next year and will you stand shoulder-to shoulder with the sponsors moving those bills through the House and the Senate in Rhode Island?
Q5. What is your position on Charter Schools? Specifically, do you believe that high performing Charter schools are a valid choice to offer kids and parents in our community?
Q6. The leader of the Democratic Party in both the Rhode Island House and the Senate matters a lot and part of the reason we haven’t had all of the legislation that we’ve talked about, our dream legislation, come to a vote, is because of our leadership. I want to know you opinion and who you plan to support for leaders if you’re elected.
Q7. Do you support or oppose the Fane Tower? Where do you stand on the specific issues of zoning changes and the Tower’s use of Public Park space? What steps have you personally taken on this topic?
Q8. A question about the racial divide in the district, specifically Cranston Street. I’ve included the video of the man asking the question for deeper context.
Q9. Another question about the issue of choice, framed in the context o a conspiracy theory.
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