Letter: Dissatisfied RI Residents must stay and fight

Posted 3/28/24

No single political-party always works in the best interest of all people.

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Letter: Dissatisfied RI Residents must stay and fight


To the editor:

In response to Mike Proto's letter ('You needn't stay in R.I. if you're dissatisfied'), itself a reply to a letter calling for diversity in political leadership in our state, the writer stated the following: he is a lifelong Democrat voter and "the fact that Democrats dominate Rhode Island politics is precisely why I chose to live here."

Although Mr. Proto is entitled to his opinion, his letter makes it very clear: he calls for voluntary fascism — the use of his Constitutional right to vote to undermine democracy for the many by electing a one-sided "team" that retains all the decision-making power affecting citizens and tax-payers throughout Rhode Island.

Personally, I can say that I have voted in my lifetime across all parties — Republican, Independent/unaffiliated and yes, even Democrat (Tim Sweeney for Town Council to be specific) my entire life. 

The reason for this? No single political-party always works in the best interest of all people.

Before straight-party voting ended 2014, I was part of a grassroots effort to make that happen: its mantra being "vote the person not the party."

This mantra has been my Northstar as a voter. Unless we break the cycle of single-party voting, no matter WHAT the policy driving us at the polls, we as voters are welcoming political laziness and corruption to the halls of power.

Make no mistake: realistically, Rhode Island will most likely never go totally red. Since the "Bloodless Revolution" following The Great Depression and FDR, Rhode Island and the entire Northeast make up the “Blue Wall.” The last Republican President the state voted for was Reagan's re-election in 1984.

Therefore, endorsing this continued voter behavior is giving in to the politically lazy and foster’s inept leadership — even corruption — in elected officials.

Additionally, studies have shown voting "pure Democrat" is statistically bad for Rhode Island’s economy. According to a 2010 study 'Leaving Rhode Island', RI lost $78 million in annual tax revenue — worst after Ohio and New Jersey — due to the RI Death Tax.

More recently studies have supported this. After politically similar Massachusetts implemented a new wealth tax, a sharp decrease in tax revenue followed and rankings for business-friendliness took a nosedive. This is solid proof that Democrat-led states push economic policies that don't work for all.

Lastly, single-party Democrat voting in a blue-state leads to deep harm to those who lack upward mobility. Simply put: not everyone who disagrees with single party dominance can move to a "red state" or have the ability to leave Rhode Island. This leaves an entire community of the state ignored.

Therefore, individual voters must understand the dangers of single-party political leadership and have their voices be heard on behalf of fairness.

What people can do by not voting for single-party Democrat control of the state? Ensure transparency, balance, and greater policy oversight to citizen and taxpayers.

Only with different people, different parties, and different philosophies in office can come different ideas and greater balance as a whole to better the people of Rhode Island.

Will Sousa Grapentine
Vice Chair of the Bristol Republican Town Committee

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