JOINT STATEMENT; FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 22, 2015
Public Pressure Turns Tide in General Assembly; Governor Challenged; MacBeth Expects New Powers
Providence, RI – Having achieved many of its key demands – with court documents released, with House Oversight Committee hearings scheduled to resume next week, and with the Speaker of the House now publicly inching closer to allowing full subpoena power – the coalition of the five good-government groups that are demanding re-invigorated 38 Studios investigations today renew their challenge to the Governor about its remaining unfulfilled demand to appoint an independent investigator.
These sentiments were largely echoed by Representative Karen MacBeth, chair of the committee, in a discussion this morning with a representative of the multi-partisan coalition. MacBeth, who is hopeful that leadership will now empower her committee with the tools and freedom it needs to find out who knew what and when, indicated that her committee will focus on the political and ethical aspects of the insider 38 Studios deal. The chairwoman also expressed that, equally important, a separate and simultaneous non-political investigation should also be conducted to look into potential criminal wrong-doing and all other aspects of the scandal, which eventually could waste up to $100 million in taxpayer funds.
With very little information made public about the State Police investigation, the coalition believes that an investigative effort, completely independent of Rhode Island’s political sphere, is also necessary.
“Clearly, the pressure our coalition has put on legislative leaders has had an impact in the General Assembly,” commented Ken Block of Watchdog RI, one of the group’s leaders. “Now it is time for the Governor to do her part to fulfill her campaign obligation; she needs to recognize that the people of Rhode Island are owed this independent investigation.”
“We believe that all relevant witnesses should be required to testify without preconditions,” stressed Randall Rose of Occupy Providence.
“The voice of the people does make a difference and is being heard on Smith Hill,” added Mike Stenhouse, CEO for the RI Center for Freedom of Prosperity.
The group congratulates Representative MacBeth for resuming hearings; expresses gratitude to the over the 1100 Rhode Islanders who signed the online petition or sent emails to their representatives; and thanks the dozens of legislators who publicly supported investigations (Investigate38StudiosNow.org).
The good government groups behind Investigate38StudiosNow.org continue to ask every sitting Rhode Island legislator to take a stand and go on the record in support, or not, of each of these paths. Lawmakers are still requested to send an email from their official state email address to info@Investigate38StudiosNow.org stating whether they “Support” or “Not Support” each of these two questions. Over 3 dozen lawmakers have already responded with their positions.
Mike Stenhouse, CEO, RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity
401.429.6115 | firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Center
The nonpartisan RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity is Rhode Island’s premiere free-enterprise research and advocacy organization. The mission of the 501-C-3 nonprofit organization is to return government to the people by opposing special-interest politics and advancing proven free-market solutions that can transform lives by restoring economic competitiveness, increasing educational opportunities, and protecting individual freedoms.