Indivisible Rhode Island hosted its second “Better Know a Rhode Island Candidate” event at Westminster Unitarian Church in East Greenwich. Five candidates for office were given time to address the audience and take some questions.
I’m trying an experiment here in that I’m doing five posts, one for each candidate.
Daniel McKee is a Democrat and the incumbent Lieutenant Governor. Before serving as Lieutenant Governor, Dan McKee was the six-term Mayor of Cumberland.
McKee used nearly double his allotted time. At the very end of McKee’s presentation he got around to answering the question that brought him to Indivisible Rhode Island in the first place.
McKee had been accused of being dismissive of the concerns of women wanting to protect their access to reproductive health care back in April when, on Rhode Island Public Radio (RIPR) he said in answer to a question from Scott MacKay, “First of all I’m not a constitutional lawyer so I don’t even know if that like, you know is it more of a gesture, as opposed to support, is actually, is it actually going to hold up, I don’t know. I don’t see the Roe Vs Wade going to be reversed…I don’t know if it adds anything any more protection or not quite frankly, Scott.”
“Our members have selected passage of the Reproductive Health Care Act as one of our top priorities,” said Andy Acciaioli, executive director of Indivisible Rhode Island in response. “Someone should explain to Lieutenant Governor McKee the difference between a gesture and the preservation of a woman’s right to choose; given the current anti-women’s rights climate in Washington. If Mr McKee or any other Rhode Island elected official choose to not protect women’s reproductive health care, perhaps others should fill those offices.”
Now, asked for his stance on reproductive rights, McKee was definitive:
“I have been for the right to choose for women’s health, I’ve been on the record for that.,” said McKee. As for the RIPR interview, and his non-committal stance on the Reproductive Health Care Act (RHCA), McKee said that, “They failed to say that in that same interview that I supported Roe v Wade, I also support the woman’s right to choose. So yes, I support that in terms of historically I have supported that.”
Asked if he would work to pass the RHCA, McKee pivoted, saying he would work on women’s rights and health issues. In fact, McKee never said he would support the RHCA or hlp in any way to pass it.
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