Statement from Chairman Lynch on the nomination of Justice Thompson

October 7th, 2009

PAWTUCKET – Rhode Island Democratic Party Chairman Bill Lynch issued the following statement today regarding President Obama’s nomination of Rhode Island Superior Court Justice O. Rogeriee Thompson to the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit:

“Justice Thompson is one the most qualified and gifted jurists I have ever had to the pleasure to work with. Her keen intellect and unswerving commitment to fairness make her an exceptional choice for the First Circuit and I believe she will make all Rhode Islanders proud as she continues to break barriers and administer justice with temperance and unflappable courage.”

It Could Happen to Anyone

September 21st, 2009

Earlier today Chairman Lynch sent out this editorial submission to newspapers across the state on why Rhode Islanders can’t wait any longer for Congress to pass real health care reform:

A flurry of new reports from the Treasury Department, the U.S. Census Bureau, the Robert Wood Johnson and the Kaiser Family Foundations underscore something we’ve known in Rhode Island for a long time – we can’t wait another year for health insurance reform.

According to recent national data from the U.S. Census, the number of uninsured increased from 39.8 million in 2001 to 46.3 million in 2008. Most of these individuals are in the middle class — people who work hard and pay their bills, but don’t get health benefits through their employers or can’t afford to buy it on the private market. In Rhode Island there are now approximately 123,000 people living without insurance; one accident or illness away from financial disaster. There’s more bad news. Those who have insurance aren’t necessarily any better off – new analysis from the Treasury Department found that nearly half of all Americans under 65 will lose their health coverage at some point in the next 10 years.

Bottom line: each one of us could suddenly find ourselves without health care coverage and we all stand to benefit from health insurance reform.

It’s been about 100 years since Teddy Roosevelt first called for reform. Almost every president since has tried to reform our system, but they’ve failed – piling more burdens on American families and businesses with each missed opportunity. Over the past 10 years, health insurance premiums increased by 131 percent and the average family policy now costs $13,375 a year.

We’re closer than ever to passing comprehensive reform – four out of five congressional committees have completed their work and an unprecedented coalition of doctors, nurses, hospitals, seniors groups, even drug companies, are backing action this year – but if opponents of reform have their way, we’ll fall short again. Premiums will continue to rise three times faster than wages, or deficits will increase and eventually the United States will spend more on Medicare and Medicaid than every other government program combined.

President Obama’s health insurance reform plan takes the best from Democratic and Republican proposals to address three broad goals: provide more security and stability for people who have insurance, provide affordable, quality choices for those who don’t, and lower health care costs for American families, businesses and our government.

For the majority of Americans who already have insurance – through an employer, Medicare, Medicaid or the VA – nothing about the President’s plan would require them to change a thing about their coverage. In simple terms, reform will just make their coverage better by outlawing some of the insurance companies worst practices. It’ll be against the law for insurance companies to deny coverage based on a pre-existing condition, cancel your coverage when you get sick or limit the amount of coverage you can receive. Reform will also limit the amount insurance companies can charge for out-of-pocket costs and will require them to fully cover preventive care like routine checkups or mammograms. Today, almost a quarter of Americans pay at least $1,000 out-of-pocket each year for their care.

For the tens of millions of Americans without insurance, President Obama’s plan offers quality, affordable choices. The President’s plan would create of a new insurance exchange – imagine a marketplace or mall, but instead of shoes or books you comparison shop for health care plans – where individuals and small businesses pool their lot and leverage their purchasing power for more competitive prices. It works – this is how Members of Congress get their insurance. People (or small businesses) who still can’t afford coverage would be eligible for subsidies and tax credits to eek costs down even further.

The President’s plan also calls for the creation of a public insurance option, which has unfairly been the subject of much malign and distortion during this debate. Here are the facts: the public option is not a “government takeover,” not even close. No one would be forced to choose it and only those without insurance would actually be able to get it. As the President has said all along, the public option is simply the best idea he’s seen to inject more competition into the market and ensure that everyone has an affordable choice. According to a new survey from the New England Journal of Medicine, more than 60 percent of doctors support a public plan.

President Obama won’t sign a bill that adds “one dime” to our deficits. In fact, the majority of his plan will be paid for by finding savings in the existing system – money that’s either being used inefficiently or abused. Medicare Advantage is an excellent example. This program allows Medicare beneficiaries to receive services via private plans. The problem? We pay private plans an average of 14 percent more, for the same exact care. Egregious overpayments like that will end once we pass reform.

Democrats in Rhode Island are behind the President’s plan for reform. They’re not buying into the distortion and the lies that the President’s plan will create “death panels” (a claim that’s been thoroughly debunked), grant coverage to illegal immigrants (also not true) or result in the use of federal funds for abortion services (false – current law, which prohibits federal funding for abortions, would remain unchanged). And seniors are certainly not falling for bogus claims by Republicans that health insurance reform will cut Medicare benefits. That’s completely wrong – reform will simply end overpayments to insurance companies and eliminate hundreds of billions in waste and fraud that go to pad insurance company profits, but don’t actually improve the car seniors receive. (Side note: Since when did Republicans start championing Medicare? They cried “socialism” in an attempt to block its creation and GOP members of Congress voted overwhelmingly for a budget alternative that would have “ended Medicare as we know it”, effectively replacing it with a privatized voucher system.)

Rhode Island’s Democrats have had enough from Republicans who have decided that it’s better politics to kill reform than to come up with a plan on their own. But should we really be surprised? These are the same Congressional Republicans who opted for the “do nothing” Hoover approach to our struggling economy; they stood in near lockstep opposition to the Recovery Act, a package that’s keeping cops on the street, teachers in classrooms and gave 95 percent of working families a tax cut.

President Obama inherited an economy in shambles and escalating deficits, but he’s taken bold and necessary actions to rescue our economy from the brink and is starting to rebuild stronger than before. Health insurance reform is critical to that effort. The time for partisan bickering is over – now is the time for action. Democrats in Rhode Island will continue to support President Obama’s efforts to pass health insurance reform this year.

Lynch: Carcieri’s speech to anti-gay group equals an endorsement of intolerant proclamations

September 1st, 2009

Hey folks, the chairman just issued this release:

PAWTUCKET – Rhode Island Democratic Party Chairman Bill Lynch said today that Governor Don Carcieri’s plan to appear next month as the keynote speaker at a Bay State fundraiser for an anti-gay organization is tantamount to an endorsement of that right-wing group’s intolerant and insensitive stance towards the gay and lesbian community.

Today’s Providence Journal reports that Carcieri will be the headline speaker at the Massachusetts Family Institute’s annual banquet in October. After reviewing MFI’s Website, Lynch said the governor should immediately withdraw his agreement to speak at the event and apologize to the thousands of gay and lesbian Rhode Islanders, and their families, who stand to be offended by his callous appeasement of this ultra-conservative organization.

“Don Carcieri has forgotten that he was elected to be the governor for all Rhode Islanders, not just the ones who share his particular ideology. It’s one thing to take a position for or against same gender marriage, but when you speak to a group that calls homosexuality an ‘unhealthy practice’ that is ‘destructive to individuals, families and society,’ you cross a line that is not only offensive, but out of step with how most Rhode Islanders feel about the issue,” Lynch said.

MFI also claims that gays and lesbians can be “normalized” and “cured” from same-sex attraction. Lynch noted that the Massachusetts Family Institute doesn’t only oppose marriage equality, it lobbies against civil unions and domestic partnership benefits because it says such proposals are “discriminatory” and “devalue” heterosexual marriages.

“For the governor to support a group that believes gay and lesbian Rhode Islanders are not normal, hard-working, taxpayers proves that he is a sectarian extremist who, now in the waning days of his administration, seeks to fan the flames of intolerance in a desperate attempt to appear relevant again,” Lynch said.

“As if a tanking economy and record high unemployment weren’t enough, now Rhode Islanders have one more reason to be ashamed of and disappointed in their governor.”

Chairman Lynch mourns the loss of Sen. Kennedy

August 26th, 2009

Chairman Lynch just release this statement:

“I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Sen. Kennedy. Today, the senate has lost a giant and America’s working families have lost a champion. The senior senator from Massachusetts was always a true friend to the people of Rhode Island, and I will miss this great and honorable public servant who spent decades fighting for the underdog and championing the causes of the voiceless.

My thoughts and prayers are with Congressman Patrick Kennedy today, and the entire Kennedy family.”

Junior Varsity Republicans fake email to scare up support at town hall meeting

August 19th, 2009

A few minutes ago, Chairman Lynch issued this release:

Lynch calls on Steele and Cicione to renounce false email campaign ‘Stop using scare tactics to incite anger and block real health care reform’

PAWTUCKET – Rhode Island Democratic Party Chairman Bill Lynch called on the leaders of the local and national GOP to renounce the false email campaign being conducted on their behalf by the chair of the RI Young Republicans, in which they allege that organizers from ACORN are being bused into tonight’s town hall meeting with Congressman Langevin.

Earlier this week, RI Young Republican Chair Travis Rowley began forwarding an email which he claimed was originally sent from the organizing group ACORN that read:

Dear Members.

As you are aware in our prior email, we need your presence at Congressman James Langevin’s Town Hall Meeting at the Warwick police Station 99 Veterans Memorial Drive, Warwick, Rhode Island. We are planning on arriving early at 1:30PM to fill the hall before the radical right protestors arrive. A box lunch will be provided for those on the bus. We will meet at headquarters for those wishing to join us on the bus.

Thank you!

The Acorn Team

Today, ACORN issued a statement saying they never sent such an email, and that their organization had no plans to be in attendance at tonight’s town hall meeting in Warwick. That statement reads:

An e-mail from Rhode Island Young Republicans that supposedly included an e-mail message from ACORN to our members is entirely a hoax and a fabrication.  We have seen this pattern across the country, where right wing and Republican elements are attempting to stoke up their base using these entirely fabricated lies about ACORN.  Around the country ACORN is engaged in the fight for quality, affordable health care, and believe it is every American’s right and privilege to voice their opinion and attend town hall meetings.  But for the record:

a) ACORN has never had a plan to attend Congressman Langevin’s Town Hall meeting; and

b) The e-mail that was supposedly from ACORN to our members is a total fabrication.

“Frankly, I think it’s nauseating that the Republican Party would manufacture a fake email as a desperate attempt to excite their right wing base. No wonder Rhode Islanders don’t trust Republicans to lead, today they’ve proven themselves to be nothing more than liars who will do anything to stand in the way of reform and beat back the change American voted for last November,” Lynch said.

“I would hope that Chairmen Steele and Cicione would at least have to decency to repudiate this divisive, false and cheap stunt. To not do so would exhaust what little credibility they already have in the eyes of hard working Rhode Islanders,” Lynch said.

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Lynch fires back at RI GOP for trying to disrupt town hall meetings

August 18th, 2009

Chairman Lynch just put out this statement calling out the RI GOP for their shameful efforts to turn this week’s town hall meetings with Congressman Langevin and Senator Whitehouse into an angry sideshow.

“I’m disappointed that the Rhode Island Republican Party would choose to turn a serious meeting between members of our Congressional delegation and their constituents into a divisive and angry mob-like atmosphere. And while the GOP may think it’s funny to try to incite a riot,
I would remind them that there are nearly 46 million Americans, including 63,000 Rhode Islanders, without health coverage, and millions more throughout the country who struggle to afford it every day.

In the last eight years, the Republican Party gave the insurance industry exclusive control of our health care system, and now they’re desperate to fight the kind of change that will empower Rhode Islanders and their doctors, not lobbyists, to make decision about their care.

These meeting are supposed to be a thoughtful exchange of ideas, and a place where people can ask questions about efforts to reform our health care system. Over the last few weeks it’s become increasingly clear that the Republican Party, with no reform plan of their own, is not concerned about Americans’ access to quality heath care, but are extreme ideologues, only interested in ‘breaking’ the President and thwarting the change Americans voted for last November.

It’s no wonder why Rhode Island voters don’t trust the Republican Party to lead.

Despite their shameful and threatening tactics, we will continue our work to give a voice to the majority of Rhode Islanders who believe that all Americans should have access to quality, affordable health care.”

Tomorrow, please come to the Town Hall meeting in Warwick with Congressman Langevin. Let your voice be heard, and help us pass health care reform legislation that will insure access and affordability for all Rhode Islanders

Sign the Petition!

June 19th, 2009

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE VIDEO: Carcieri’s Shadow Advisers

TransformRI, Governor Carceiri’s political front group, refuses to list their corporate donors. These donors may have paid for a current ad campaign by TransformRI in support of Governor Carceiri’s proposal to give millions of tax-dollars away to corporations.

While lobbyists, elected officials, campaigns, advocates and many others continue to disclose their finances, donations and other items with the Board of Elections, as well as in financial disclosure forms for the Ethics Comission, Carceiri’s front group simply hides from public scrutiny by filing as a non-profit. While they believe it is legal to do this, it certainly skirts the spirit of the ethics commission’s disclosure forms and all campaign finance laws and restrictions.

Urge the governor to practice the transparency he preaches by calling on TransformRI to release the names of the corporations that are backing his corporate tax-dollar giveaway.

To help you can:

1. Sign the petition by clicking here

2. Call the governor at 222-2080 and urge him to have TransformRI release the names

3. Help the RI Democrats continue the pressure by donating now

A Tribute to Sen. Pell

January 5th, 2009

Chairman Bill Lynch and the Democratic Party of Rhode Island invite you to share stories and post condolences to the Pell family in the comment section below.

Please remember the Perna and Lynch families in your prayers today

August 8th, 2008

We at the Democratic Party would like send our most heartfelt condolences to Lynn Lynch, wife of our chairman, Bill Lynch, and the entire Perna family on the recent passing of Mrs. Lynch’s father, Anthony Perna, of Providence. Please know you are in our thoughts and prayers.

If you would like to post a note of condolence to family, you may do so here.

PERNA, ANTHONY A., 72, of Smithfield Ave., Providence, passed away on Wednesday. He was the son of the late Angelo and Teresa (Sylvester) Perna.

Mr. Perna was the Owner of North End Auto Body on Smithfield Ave. in Providence. He was also a communicant and usher at St. Raymond Church in Providence and often volunteered in the Church’s efforts to feed the homeless.

He leaves his daughters, Denise DeCesare and her husband Marciano, Lynn Lynch and her husband William, Lindsey and Ashley Perna; his son, Anthony A., Perna, Jr. and his wife Kathy; his grandchildren, Marciano, Anthony, and Jason DeCesare, Jarred and Blair Lynch, Katelyn and Alex Perna; his sister, Angela O’Brien; and a niece, Lori Golato. He is also survived by his former wives, Ann (Lambias) Perna and Cheryl Perna.

Visitation Friday MORNING, 9:30 – 11 AM in the A.A. MARIANI & SON Funeral Home, 200 Hawkins St., Providence, with a Mass of Christian Burial to follow at 11:30 AM in St. Maria Goretti Church, 155 Power Rd., Pawtucket. Burial in St. Francis Cemetery, Pawtucket. In lieu of flowers donations to: St. Raymond Church, 2 Matilda St., Providence, 02904. WWW.MARIANIANDSON.COM.

Exxon-McCain in 2008

August 6th, 2008

The DNC is breaking the lid off the

McCain Presidential ticket in 2008

At a press conference to be held later today, the DNC plans on revealing the Republican ticket for this upcoming election. John McCain’s running mate is of course…

EXXON-MOBILE!

Exxon-McCain

I know this may shock some of you. You MAY have been thinking Mitt Romney or some other misguided Republican surrogate. But who has done more to prop up John McCain and carry the Republican machine this election cycle than Exxon-Mobile? Not only has Exxon-Mobile donated well over $2 million to the McCain campaign, but Exxon-Mobile has also posted record quarterly profits as Americans struggle to afford the lofty price of gas. What’s more Republican than leasing a candidate and his votes and fleecing the average American?!?

Personally, I think Exxon-Mobile is the PERFECT choice for the Republican ticket in ‘08.