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State GOP misses out on party's nationwide surge

Correction appended.

Despite big GOP gains nationwide, Rhode Island Republicans will be shut out of all five statewide offices and all four U.S. congressional seats for the first time since 1975.

Lincoln Chafee '75 P'14, an independent, will replace Republican Gov. Donald Carcieri '65 in January.

Democrats swept all other statewide elections.

In Rhode Island's two U.S. congressional districts, Mayor David Cicilline '83 beat Republican John Loughlin in the race to replace retiring Rep. Patrick Kennedy, and incumbent Jim Langevin defended his seat with 59.9 percent of the vote. Neither of Rhode Island's senators, Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse, were up for reelection.

In the other four statewide races, Democrats Elizabeth Roberts '78, Ralph Mollis, Peter Kilmartin and Gina Raimondo were elected lieutenant governor, secretary of state, attorney general and treasurer, respectively.

Roberts, the incumbent, beat Robert Healey of the Cool Moose Party by 15 percent after the Republican candidate dropped out and endorsed her challenger. Healey had promised not to take a salary and work to abolish the office, which he considers a waste of taxpayers' money.

Terrence George '13, president of the Brown Republicans, said he was "happy" with the elections results across the country, which he called a "repudiation of the Obama agenda."

But "Rhode Island is the most solidly Democratic state in the union. That's a fact," said George, a Herald opinions columnist. "That's not something we expect to change with one election cycle."

In Providence, the results were much the same.

In the mayoral race, Democrat Angel Taveras cruised to victory over independent candidate Jon Scott with more than 80 percent of the vote. The Republican Party did not field a candidate.

Over on the East Side of Providence, Democrats swept the three General Assembly seats representing College Hill. Voters sent Rhoda Perry P'91 back to the State Senate for her eighth term representing the third district. Perry, who ran unopposed in 2008, beat Republican Morris Markovitz and independent candidate Miriam Ross to retain her seat.

Edith Ajello, a nine-term incumbent, beat Republican Dan Harrop in the third district Rhode Island House race by a margin of three to one.

Chris Blazejewski carried the race to fill the District 2 House seat vacated by Democrat David Segal with nearly 75 percent of the vote, beating independent candidate Richard Rhodi.

Democrat Seth Yurdin, who represents College Hill on the City Council, ran unopposed for re-election.

An earlier version of this article incorrectly reported that state Republicans were shut out of all state-wide offices and congressional seats for the first time since 1972. The correct date is 1975. The Herald regrets the error.


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