The RI political cooperative criticized for the publications of a second candidate on social networks

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The battle challenges Rep. Karen Alzate, a Democrat from Pawtucket who is chair of the Rhode Island Legislative Black and Latino Caucus.

“I think this is starting to identify a pattern where the co-op did not screen applicants very well,” said Patrick Crowley, secretary-treasurer of the AFL-CIO of Rhode Island. “It’s surprising, but it raises the bigger question of how the co-op makes decisions about who it supports. “

Crowley argued that it was hypocritical for the co-op to run candidates such as Jackson and Battle “under the progressive banner” while challenging Democrats such as Euer, who sponsored the climate law, and Alzate, who sponsored a bill increase Rhode Island’s top tax rate from 5.99% to 8.99%.

“I don’t see what is progressive in targeting lawmakers who are trying to tax the rich,” Crowley said. “The troubling thing here, from my perspective, is that they seem to take the position that only one organization has the right to define what a progressive is, and I think that goes against the grain. goals of what the broader Rhode Island progressive movement is trying to accomplish.

A spokeswoman for the Rhode Island Political Co-op released a statement on Friday, saying, “We will be evaluating our background check process for potential applicants to ensure that everyone involved in the co-op is aligned with our values ​​and our platform. political form – policies that Rhode Islanders desperately need every day to live a better life.

Spokeswoman Camilla Pelliccia said the co-op decided to challenge Alzate because of her support for Speaker of the House K. Joseph Shekarchi, a Democrat from Warwick who she said “opposes pressing progressive priorities, including raising taxes on the rich, passing bold Green New Deal legislation, and dealing with the severe housing crisis that is accelerating in our state.

While Alzate sponsored a bill to tax the highest incomes, the legislation died in the House finance committee.

Alzate expressed support for Democratic Treasurer General Seth Magaziner, who announced on September 14 that he would run for governor in 2022.

Former Secretary of State Matt Brown, co-founder of the Rhode Island Political Cooperative, announced on September 22 that he would run for governor, launching a progressive slate with State Senator Cynthia Mendes running for the post. lieutenant governor, and up to 50 other co-op candidates.

Battle was announced as a co-op candidate in House District 60, challenging Alzate. The cooperative site describes Battle as “a community organizer, mental health professional, artist and mother.”

On August 24, Battle shared and commented on a Facebook post that appeared to refer to COVID-19 vaccines.

“As one person wrote: Does the warrant have the force of law? No religious exemptions? she wrote. “Title VII of the United States Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination based on religion. Give up the position? This is considered unlawful dismissal based on discrimination. Leave without pay? This is retaliation and another violation of Title VII. People have to defend themselves – yes, as this letter says, be a soldier, but not for them. “

On July 8, Battle shared a Facebook post of a Faithwire article with the headline “Hobby Lobby Faces Atheist Backlash for ‘One Nation Under God’ Ad.

“Christian retailer Hobby Lobby faced atheist contempt this week for its Independence Day advertisement, which ran in newspapers nationwide,” the article reads. Featured on the ad – which featured a child running with an American flag – featured the words’ A nation under God, ‘as well as a reference to Psalm 33:12, which states,’ Blessed is the nation whose God is. the Lord .’ “

The battle could not be reached on Friday afternoon.


Edward Fitzpatrick can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on twitter @FitzProv.



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