[Summit] Jackson and Fox

e h equityhere at gmail.com
Sun May 15 14:58:13 CDT 2016


Thank you for this clarification.

On Saturday, May 14, 2016, Aaron Regunberg <aaron.regunberg at gmail.com>
wrote:

> Hi there,
>
> Aaron here. Just saw your message; I don't know if you were referring to
> me, but just to clarify, I have never said the situation is too bad but
> that's just human nature - not sure where that's coming from, though maybe
> it is the email on ethics reform I sent out to my list last week following
> the Gallison arrest (before the Jackson bomb dropped, but apparently
> appropriately timed), which I am copying below. As I think you will see,
> what I said is pretty much the exact opposite of "it's too bad." I am happy
> to add you to my email list if you would like to receive updates like these.
>
> Our community is angry. Our state is frustrated. And we should be!
>
> Rhode Islanders deserve a state government we can trust. We should be able
> to assume that our elected officials will serve with honesty and integrity.
> As we saw (once again) this past week with the resignation of one of my
> colleagues in the House,
> <http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?f=0013_bINBXaV96uJmC0x4VRpZeF6yxLz3qTJkaTGFzdvH5YVaxdtxkPzZJOyrfBlWYgDlRbu5CIqJnZaqJlSekLLUbDukiXcUfeGt-el1oA2GgABe4pZuOH6J7e5imz4yofc_tTCb1ugapNIh_Uz_TwrRGvlu7EIuerqhO2lOCRnyjmz6PHwZ6tTrr-5oWMECMLTLK-6FlGtcANnTNv2ZYw_3ss7uBrEZv9eBXciTtA2I5fZuJC8c_bB-B5VpggdthuoMB20-eaZjSFZ9SgVMbtdGXDLpGFePiP&c=RytNQQbVMJZier1MQEdc9-oxq9Mi2VnXQCAmSBeClw99I0kWB_I1HQ==&ch=KqtsE3dfVGdJJhX7gzX3NRNja3JiR8Jhm0q1p3irNqbHW7xQLc-UuQ==>
> that assumption is still tragically far from a safe one.
>
> Now, it is true that we can never 100% guarantee ethical behavior by our
> public officials; people are people, and some are flawed. But we can
> create systems of accountability and oversight to ensure - as much as is
> humanly possible - that politicians are kept honest.
>
> *Right now, those systems are not all in place, as evidenced by the state
> Ethics Commission's lack of jurisdiction over the General Assembly.*
>
> Quick backstory in case this isn't familiar to you: in 2009, the Rhode
> Island Supreme Court ruled that the "speech in debate" clause of the state
> Constitution protected legislators from prosecution during the performance
> of their core duties, like voting and debating on the floor. Since then the
> Ethics Commission has stopped investigating conflict-of-interest complaints
> that involve legislators voting or introducing legislation.
>
> I realized the magnitude of this lack of oversight after my own election a
> year and a half ago. I asked to meet with a lawyer from the Ethics
> Commission to get some basic guidelines on how to stay as far away as
> possible from any conflicts of interest that might come up. I was stunned
> when the lawyer said he couldn't even offer me an advisory opinion
> regarding my questions. "You may as well be a representative from
> Connecticut, for all the jurisdiction I have over you," he said.
>
> That's a crazy situation. While there are a lot of upstanding and
> honorable people serving in the legislature, everyone, in every field,
> needs oversight and accountability - and clearly this field needs it more
> than most.
>
> That's why I have done my best to be a broken record about the need to
> restore ethics oversight on speech in debate within the General Assembly
> since my election. And if there's a silver lining from last week's ugly
> scandal, it may be that the momentum on this issue seems to have shifted.
> In fact, new legislation to this effect is being introduced this week.
>
> There's still a lot of work to make sure this legislation is as strong and
> effective as possible, so we're not out of the woods yet. But I think
> there's a real path forward.
>
> I know these issues are particularly important to many in our community,
> given our district's recent political history, so I will keep you closely
> in the loop
> <http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?f=0013_bINBXaV96uJmC0x4VRpZeF6yxLz3qTJkaTGFzdvH5YVaxdtxkPzZJOyrfBlWYgQm1WGsUMlCv5daeOEtcpKDpehMTZFUCrt7VyZdBuZ7cqIlD0UCqf5u3tcqMqeyqVES1IZ4UYpxEcW6MDrLDPN2BvqYZmfBNJgyDW-QQeeOWCSXmAKNX-AtYqqaV26E6lvISne2nmR0iR3_bTyZD1mQ==&c=RytNQQbVMJZier1MQEdc9-oxq9Mi2VnXQCAmSBeClw99I0kWB_I1HQ==&ch=KqtsE3dfVGdJJhX7gzX3NRNja3JiR8Jhm0q1p3irNqbHW7xQLc-UuQ==> as
> this legislation plays out during the remainder of our session.
>
> Thanks again for your interest in clean government - it makes a difference.
>
>
> On Sat, May 14, 2016 at 10:47 AM, e h <equityhere at gmail.com
> <javascript:_e(%7B%7D,'cvml','equityhere at gmail.com');>> wrote:
>
>> So well put Mikalia.   There is a real equity issue realtive to the big
>> picture here, no doubt.  But, the core issue here is corruption.  This is
>> the same neighborhood/district that elected Fox.  Both people had early
>> warning signals:  transgressions on mondy matter for filing statements on
>> polical funds.  Jakcson's opponent came close to winning but still could
>> not carry the vote!!!   And Fox had an excellent candidate run against him
>> with Mark Binker.  Now the current rep simply says that Jackson's situation
>> is too bad but "that's hunan nature".  Why is there a weakness in this
>> disctrict/neighborhood when it comes to electing honest people????
>>
>> On Friday, May 13, 2016, Mikaila Mariel Lemonik Arthur <
>> mmlarthur at gmail.com <javascript:_e(%7B%7D,'cvml','mmlarthur at gmail.com');>>
>> wrote:
>>
>>>
>>> First, a caveat--what I am about to write is not in any way an
>>> endorsement of or excuse for Jackson, and while I do believe in due
>>> process, there are circumstances in which an ongoing political scandal
>>> imperils a politician's ability to perform the duties of his office, and
>>> this is likely to be one.
>>>
>>> However, I find Michael's question about whether anyone on this list can
>>> imagine a circumstance in which they might be arrested quite concerning. It
>>> is this kind of comment which contributes to people's (incorrect)
>>> assumptions that our neighborhood is a place of overwhelming privilege,
>>> disconnected from the realities of the rest of the city. By age 23, 49% of
>>> Black men, 44% of Latino men, and 38% of White men have been arrested; the
>>> numbers are nearly 1/3 of all people (women have a lower risk of arrest
>>> than men). Those numbers are even higher if you look at those with lower
>>> overall educational levels, and of course lifetime risk is higher--some
>>> estimates suggest that more than half of men will be arrested in their
>>> lifetimes (Google for more details if you are interested).
>>>
>>> Just a brief sampling of reasons for arrest among relatives and
>>> acquaintances of mine: civil disobedience at a political protest, arguing
>>> with a police officer who is behaving inappropriately, possession of
>>> marijuana, and a loud drunken argument on New Year's Eve. Many arrests of
>>> these sorts do not ultimately result in a conviction or a criminal record.
>>> I suspect a large portion of the neighborhood has been guilty of one or all
>>> of those offenses at various times in our lives. Obviously, few of us can
>>> imagine being arrested for political corruption, but I would hope that we
>>> do not fall victim to the insidious traps of assuming that arrest equals
>>> guilt or that only "bad people" "not like us" get arrested.
>>> --Mikaila
>>>
>>> ----------------
>>> Message: 1
>>> Date: Thu, 12 May 2016 13:29:12 -0400
>>> From: Michael McGlynn<mmcglynn at gmail.com>
>>> To: Tony Adams<aa44ee at gmail.com>
>>> Cc: Sandra Lee<sandralee02906 at gmail.com>,
>>>         "summit at sna.providence.ri.us"  <summit at sna.providence.ri.us>
>>> Subject: Re: [Summit] Jackson will continue to serve
>>> Message-ID:
>>>         <CACmCVg44bpnvfC_YP4_-0uZKR+21FBwLyQ=
>>> 1eMri22-VubmxpA at mail.gmail.com>
>>> Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"
>>>
>>> Tony, you are tacitly endorsing a very low standard for an elected
>>> official.
>>>
>>> Can anyone on this listserv imagine a scenario where they would be
>>> arrested. For anything?
>>>
>>> --
>>> Mikaila Mariel Lemonik Arthur
>>> mmlarthur at gmail.com <mailto:mmlarthur at gmail.com>
>>>
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> Summit mailing list
>>> Summit at sna.providence.ri.us
>>> http://sna.providence.ri.us/mailman/listinfo/summit_sna.providence.ri.us
>>> SNA Website: http://sna.providence.ri.us/
>>>
>>
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>> SNA Website: http://sna.providence.ri.us/
>>
>
>
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