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NEW: Rep. Lombardi Calls for Fox’s Resignation

Friday, March 21, 2014


Representative John Lombardi

Representative John Lombardi today called for a change in House leadership, in light of the raid on Speaker Gordon Fox's home and office this morning.  

"I think he's got to go," said Lombardi.  "How can he not?"

"You need to ask, "How has this worked out for you?" It hasn't worked out for us, it's time for a change," said Lombardi. "It's time to bring in people not associated with leadership."

Lombardi wouldn't speculate on whether Fox was in fact out at this point.  The U.S. Attorney's office confirmed there is an ongoing law enforcement matter for which they executed two search warrants, but stopped short of saying there was an investigation of Fox.  The office did confirm the matter involves the State Police, the FBI, and the IRS. 

Multiple sources have said the House Democrats are going on be holding a caucus at 5:30 P.M. today at the Providence Marriott on Orms Street; Lombardi said as of 3:30 PM, he hadn't heard anything.  "That's news to me," said Lombardi.  

Who's Looking to Take Top Spot

"It's all just rumors at this point," said Lombardi. "I'm hearing tthere's [House Majority Leader Nicholas] Mattiello and [Joseph] McNamara, then there's [Chris] Blazejewski, [Stephen] Ucci, and [Helio] Melo."  

"Fox has the term for two more years.  He's not necessarily going anywhere -- yet. I've heard Patty O'Neil's interested, Charlene Lima, Karen MacBeth, John DeSimone, " said Lombardi, of potential replacements for Speaker Fox's position.  

Lombardi continued, "The only people that are in jeapordy are leadership.  You're either with them, or you're with the people with the State of Rhode Island. There's only one guy who's been through this before, and that's me.  I was at the heart of Plunderdome -- there's a presumption of innocence, but the appearance of impropriety."


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