TGIF: 22 Things To Know About Rhode Island Politics & Media

5. The timing for a special election to fill TPW's Senate seat remains unclear for now. Newport City Councilor John Florez, a Democrat, was first out of the gate to announce a run for the District 13 seat. According to a campaign announcement, "Florez has made revitalizing Newport’s economy a top priority. He played an instrumental role in crafting the Innovation Hub proposal – a project with the potential to transform Newport’s economy from a seasonal tourist-driven economy to a year-round robust economy that attracts high-paying jobs with good benefits. He successfully fought for tougher environmental regulations and has consistently stood up for Newport’s children, public schools, seniors and working families." Florez is the founder of Drupal Connect, a technology company ..... Also in the hunt is lawyer and community organizer Dawn Euer, also a Democrat, who was part of the Marriage Equality Rhode Island team that fought for same-sex marriage in 2013. According to a campaign announcement, "Always willing to be a personal resource for positive community change, Euer provides advocacy and strategy guidance to numerous local agencies and nonprofits, including Newport Health Equity Zones (HEZ), Newport Open Space Partnership, and the Newport Energy and Environment Commission. Additionally, she serves as Board Chair at Bike Newport, and has been a board member for the Environmental Justice League of Rhode Island, Chair of the Newport and South County chapter of the RI National Organization for Women, Field Director of FightBackRI, Director of Education and Community Outreach of Marriage Equality Rhode Island, and Deputy Campaign Director for Rhode Islanders United for Marriage. 'I am deeply committed to public service because I cherish my community and am proud to call Rhode Island my home,' added Euer. 'I look forward to serving the residents of Jamestown and Newport in Senate District 13 and fighting to bring their voices to the State House.' " .... State GOP Chairman Brandon Bell said Republican Mike Smith, who ran a competitive race against Paiva Weed in 2014, is considering a run, and that a couple of other Republicans are looking at the race.