The third candidate for Treasurer, Ernest Almonte, never replied back to me after repeated attempts of reaching out to him. I therefore can’t say what his position is about standing up to the ratings agencies and their deceptive ratings practices.
During his campaign, Almonte has been critical of exploring all options before making a decision on repaying the 38 Studios loans. Now, after House Speaker Mattiello put on a display of cowardice by pledging that taxpayers will be on the hook to Wall Street for the 38 Studios debacle, Almonte issued a press release urging elected officials to negotiate a settlement.
You can’t walk into a negotiation unless you have leverage. Promising Wall Street (who gamed the 38 Studios deal to begin with) that tax payers will be on the hook for the deal, gives up leverage. All along, Almonte has been giving up leverage by trumpeting the Wall Street talking points about repaying a bogus “moral obligation.” Almonte is doing nothing more than political grandstanding, which is a shame.
The elected leaders of Rhode Island have yet again been bamboozled by Wall Street. Wall Street sold a deal they knew was rotten and got our elected leaders to roll over and parrot the talking points of the 1%. It looks like any chance we had at negotiating a settlement is quickly going down the drain.