“It’s a mandate for politics where we actually fight for the future and not just pretend that the present is okay,” said Kithes.
I asked Alex Kithes, who just won the special election for the Woonsocket City Council, about the day’s ups and downs. Kithes spoke to me by phone with his campaign manager Keith Jillette.
“The ups were finding out we had a lot of turnout, then finding out it was pretty much a 50/50 race, that did not feel very good,” said Jillette.
“That was a half hour of torture,” said Alex Kithes.
“Then the final up was finding out we had won the whole damn thing,” said Jillette. “It was very close. It came down to mail ballots.”
“This is a triumph of the movement here in Woonsocket,” said Kithes. “And it’s a mandate for politics where we actually fight for the future and not just pretend that the present is okay.”
The unofficial count gave Kithes 1343 votes and his opponent, Roger Jalette, 1238 votes.
“It’s a mandate for talking about climate change, and a mandate for talking about public education and the needs to really address the inequities here, and a mandate for talking about the local economy, and not destroying that to appease big business,” Kithes told me.
“It’s also a slap in the face to the local talk radio which obviously did not lose the election for us,” added Kithes. “And it’s a slap in the face to the individual whose brother published his oped at the last minute in The Valley Breeze. And it’s a slap in the face to the five city councilmembers who decided that they were going to back my opponent because he was just going to go with them blindly.
Can you help Uprise RI?
Funding for our reporting relies on the generosity of readers like you. Our independence allows us to write stories that hold RI state and local government officials accountable. All of our stories are free and available to everyone. But your support is essential to keeping Steve and Will on the beat, covering the costs of reporting many stories in a single day. If you are able to, please support Uprise RI. Every contribution, big or small is so valuable to us. You provide the motivation and financial support to keep doing what we do. Thank you.
“It’s a new day in Woonsocket.”
See all the Woonsocket City Council special election coverage here:
- Alex Kithes announces run for Woonsocket City Council
- Alex Kithes summons a positive future in his race for the Woonsocket City Council
- A lively forum for the open City Council seat in Woonsocket
- Kithes and Jalette move on to general election in Woonsocket City Council special election
- Final debate between Woonsocket City Council candidates Kithes and Jalette airs on WNRI radio; Election date August 6
- Valley Breeze publisher apologizes for unfairly influencing the Woonsocket City Council special election
“Have you considered writing down your strategies to help other progressives running tough elections across the state?” I asked.
“You mean a progressive playbook?” asked Kithes, “That’s going to happen.”
As for when Kithes starts work: “I’m assuming I’ll be at the next meeting in September. I don’t know when the swearing in is,” said Kithes.
Any last words? I asked.
“You should be present at every city council meeting from now on because there will always be something to cover now.”
The next meeting of the Woonsocket City Council is in September.
UpriseRI is entirely supported by donations and advertising. Every little bit helps:
Become a Patron!