Does Warwick suffer from a lack of people willing to represent the state’s second largest city in the General Assembly? Or is the citizenry just really happy with the delegation it has? Either way, of the nine seats the city has in the state legislature only three are being contested this campaign season, according to a list compiled by WPRI’s Ted Nesi.
Of the six seats on the House side, none are really contested. Five incumbents are running unopposed and Rep. Bob Flaherty, who has been a legislator since 1990, isn’t running. This means Gina Raimondo campaign manager and payday loan profiteer Joe Shekarchi pretty much gets to run unopposed against relatively unknown Republican John Falkowski.
But there’s some good news for lefties in the lack of local candidates for House seats, as well. Two of the unopposed seats belong to liberal legislators Frank Ferri and David Bennett Ferri, by the way, sponsored the payday loan reform bill (and Raimondo backed it!) making for an interesting point of contention here.
On the Senate side, only one of the three seats held by Warwickians will go unopposed. That one belongs to moderate-to-liberal Democrat Erin Lynch.
There’s some good news for progressives here, too – namely that Senator Michael McCaffrey, a conservative Democrat, isn’t running unopposed. He’s one of the major impediments to marriage equality in the Senate and will have to defend those views against Laura Pisaturo, a pro-choice and equality Democrat who runs the Rhode Island Children’s Advocacy Center and is a former assistant attorney general.
Here’s a bit more about her from a press release from her campaign:
Pisaturo is a former legal instructor at the Rhode Island State Municipal Police Academy and Providence Police Training Academy, and serves as a member of the Rhode Island Bar Association House of Delegates. She is an active member of the Civil Bench/Bar Committee and LGBT Legal Issues sub-Committee and previously served on the Criminal Bench/Bar and ad hocChildren at Risk Committees of the Rhode Island Bar. Pisaturo was recognized by the first Providence Business News “Forty under 40″for her career achievements and community service. In 2010, she was appointed by Chief Justice Paul Suttell to the RI Supreme Court Disciplinary Board. In June 2011 she was appointed by Mayor Scott Avedisian to the Warwick Planning Board.
This one is a race to watch for progressives as Pisaturo has an excellent political resume.