Ken Block


Cranston – Ken Block, a former Republican gubernatorial candidate and advocate for Rhode Island
government reform has enthusiastically endorsed Steven Frias in his race for State
Representative against Speaker Nicholas Mattiello.
Block stated: «Rhode Island needs legislators who actively embrace the fact that
we need to substantially change the way our government works. As someone who has
been deeply involved with reform efforts like eliminating the master lever, bringing
a line-item veto to Rhode Island and eliminating the corrupt legislative grant program,
I have seen firsthand how Speaker Mattiello has not been a willing champion of change.
For each of these efforts, Mattiello’s first response has been to state that the
reform is not necessary, and then link the reform effort to hyper-partisanship.
Even after receiving thousands of emails pushing him to enact a line-item veto,
Speaker Mattiello has not stated that he is committed to passing line-item veto
On March 12, 2015, GoLocalProv attributed the following quotes to Mattiello regarding
the line-item veto: «I am opposed to the line-item veto and this legislation» and
«This is an issue that is nothing but a distraction and adds no value to the budget
On May 10, 2014, Ed Fitzpatrick in the Providence Journal had this quote regarding
Speaker Mattiello’s thoughts on good government reforms: «Those are feel-good issues,
Mattiello said of proposals such as restoring full Ethics Commission over lawmakers,
slashing payday loan rates and eliminating the master lever. We will study them.»
Block added: «During Speaker Mattiello’s tenure, elimination of the master lever
and ethics reform did eventually pass in the House, and I am thankful for these
good government victories. But these victories were gained with the political
equivalent of a knife at the throat of legislative leadership. Disgraced Speaker
Fox’s fall made possible the elimination of the master lever and House Finance Chairman
Gallison’s legal troubles precipitated ethics reform. More than one state house
wag has told me that Rhode Island is one legislative scandal away from getting a
line-item veto.»
Block concluded: «Steve Frias is honest and intelligent and he will not be afraid
to champion government reform or hold the Raimondo administration accountable.
It is time for Rhode Island voters to take back control of their state house and
provide an object lesson to every legislator that those legislators cannot take
their seats for granted. The people want better government and less corruption
at the state house. I believe that Steve Frias is the candidate to provide the
leadership necessary to fulfill that mission.»

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