Rhode Island elected incumbent Gov. Gina Raimondo for a second term Tuesday, helping Democrats maintain trifecta control of the state.
The Associated Press announced Raimondo as the winner of Rhode Island’s gubernatorial race as of 8:39 p.m. EST over Republican candidate Allan Fung. Raimondo’s victory in the solidly Democratic state came as no surprise, especially given her clear lead over all other gubernatorial candidates in every major poll. (RELATED: Nearly 20 Percent Of Rhode Island Voters Don’t Live In Rhode Island)
Rhode Island’s gubernatorial race had grown particularly heated toward its end, with gubernatorial candidates’ frustrations boiling over in the last debate a week before Election Day.
Fung accused Raimondo of colluding with Independent candidate Joseph Trillo to split the Republican and Independent vote, which both Trillo and Raimondo dismissed as false. Raimondo argued that little difference existed between Trillo and Fung, while Trillo asserted that colluding with Raimondo would be nonsensical and that Fung had simply grown desperate since “the Republican Party gave up on him.”
Raimondo campaigned on Rhode Island’s falling unemployment rate under her administration, wage growth, and what she claimed was the success of her economic policies and efforts to better fund schools.
Fung argued, however, that Raimondo’s economic policies were driving businesses away from Rhode Island to other states.
“You’ve got stop with your fairy tales about the economy in Rhode Island, because I think all Rhode Islanders see those license plates going to Massachusetts. … That corporate welfare culture … is going to stop,” Fung said during the last debate on Nov. 1, referencing Raimondo’s business tax credits, according to Providence Journal.
Of the other candidates, Fung posed the greatest competition to Raimondo, but his candidacy was mired in reports of the corruption of the Cranston Police Department under his influence as mayor.
“When the state police took over the Cranston Police Department, the state police said the mayor ran the department like the mafia. He personally weighed into police business to help his friends,” Raimondo said.
With Raimondo’s victory, Rhode Island Democrats maintain not only the office of the governor, but also the state’s Senate and House of Representatives.
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