Audio of Fogarty Campaign Kick-Off

UPDATE: Sorry about the technical issues. Cindy’s speech is now available below and requires no downloading. Just click on the arrow.


It was a mercifully short event yesterday, standing out in the blazing sun in front of city hall, especially for the Democratic candidates who were all dutifully suited up. Democratic City Chair Mike Sepe reminded us that some of the most powerful and successful women in Rhode Island government have come from Cranston. Cindy Fogarty spoke about growing up on the South Side of Providence, going to Classical High School, and her climb into the middle class here in Cranston. She gave some background on her accomplishments as Chair of the Finance Committee in Cranston and spoke to the fundamental purpose of local government to collect taxes and use them responsibly to provide services.

Also, here’s her speech as prepared for delivery:

Fogarty for Mayor – Press Conference July 1, 2008

Until the linguists come up with a better word or phrase, I am going to sound a bit cliché and say that I am humbled and honored to be the Democratic choice for Mayor of Cranston.

When my husband, who grew up in Cranston, and I chose a place to buy our home and live over 20 years ago, the only place that we looked was in Cranston. For a person who grew “financially challenged�, born in a poor neighborhood of South Providence, the thought of owning the home that you live in, was a thrill and admittedly a mark of success. I cannot be more proud of the warm community that we found in Cranston.

Most of you know, I have been practicing law just down the street at Calart Tower since 2000 and have served two terms on the Cranston City Council, the second as Finance Chair. My undergraduate educational background in business and accounting, my experience maintaining my own business for 8 years, and my governmental experience as a councilmember with responsibility for passage of Cranston budgets, put me in the unique position of being able to manage the city from day one.

During my two year term as Finance Chair, we balanced the budget, funded the schools and did not raise taxes.

The first thing that I proposed when I became Finance Chair based on an analysis of the city’s finances at the beginning of 2005, was a resolution to the Republican Administration stating that there should be no tax increase in his proposed budget to the Council that year. This resolution was overwhelmingly supported by the Democrat members of the Council, and the proposed budget came to us with no tax increase that year.

Next we tried to open contract negotiations by passing an ordinance that permitted the Finance Chair to sit it on negotiation sessions – not negotiate, but to be able to better understand each sides positions. The Republican Administration was so opposed to the valid passage of an ordinance, that when I attempted to enforce the ordinance by attending sessions, the Administration had called in a police officer to keep me from attending.

In addition, when my committee was presented with the Republican Administration’s financing plan for the new police station, as Finance Chair, even though a new complex was critical for the safety of our employees, I objected to a plan that would have forced the taxpayers to lease the building for 25 years and then to have to buy the building at fair market value. I formed a subcommittee to review the proposal and a proposal was developed that now includes ownership at the end of 25 years.

I have a proven record of fiscal responsibility and I will continue to practice fiscal restraint, while providing the necessary services wanted by the citizens of Cranston as the Mayor of Cranston.

Over the next week, our campaign will be formalized by

– the opening of headquarters;
– appointment of a campaign manager;
– identifying ward teams and;
– a kickoff breakfast

Hopefully, you will agree that we have been corralling a wide range of experience, skills, and talents on the team that can only make us better as a whole. The team includes business people, parents, seniors, students and yes, lawyers.

Again, thank you for the honor, and thank you for taking the time to come out today to meet the candidates.

18 thoughts on “Audio of Fogarty Campaign Kick-Off

  1. I can’t open the files. Can you save the audio files as .wmv or .mp3 files?

  2. Matt, I tried uploading them as .wav files but my wordpress did not seem able to upload it, so I went with this. If you download the file to your desktop, then right-click on it and do “open with” Windows Media Player, this works on my system. I’ll also add Cindy’s written statement shortly.

  3. As much as I admire the attempts to post the kick-off speech (I, like Matt, could not open it), did anyone else notice that there has been no press coverage of the event?

    Sorry to be such a wet blanket, but this is not an auspicious start for the Fogarty campaign.

  4. Kiersten:

    Thanks for updating the audio file and adding the link. I didn’t see this week’s print edition of the Herald. And while making the Herald is a good thing for the campaign, the apparent ProJo silence is not. After all, the Journal has the higher circulation.

    To all:

    As to Fogarty’s speech, it seems as if she and Fung will be saying the same things — each one is arguing that they should get credit for holding down taxes in 2004 and 05, and, by inference, shouldn’t be blamed for the massive tax hikes of 2002 and 2003.

    At the time, I agreed with her attempts to be part of the negotiation sessions. I don’t know, though, whether “I almost got arrested” is enough of a rallying cry. That whole effort has died since then, I’d also note.

    Again, sorry for the negativity, but after this speech I’m no less convinced that this will be a “personality” race — and that Fung will win it.

  5. JFC,

    I’ve read Cindy’s above speech twice and am unable to find the quote,”I almost got arrested”. Where exactly does she state that?

  6. To Jesse
    Who writes “while making the Herald is a good thing for the campaign, the apparent ProJo silence is not. After all, the Journal has the higher circulation.”

    Im thinking you were referring to the democratic campaign kick off speech. First of all, the projo wasn’t interested in our campaign kick off, in fact the only person I saw from any media source was the photographer from the herald. They all were invited via telephone. I am sorry that in our days before the event we relied on snail mail to send out an invite to everyone to come down to city hall for the kick off, but as most of you already knew it didn’t arrive in the mail until that day. None the less projo and the herald were invited to come and cover the candidates. I still encourage everyone to give Cindy and the rest of the democratic candidates a fair shake.

    Robert J Pelletier (D)
    City Council candidate – Ward 4

  7. GCF:

    I’m paraphrasing, not making a direct quote.

    Let me explain: She mentions the administration calling in a police officer. The officer had the power to arrest her if she had not left the meeting.

    The main point is, I don’t see why she’s bringing up the issue at all. Not a very inspiring story, to me. Going to a contract negotiation in spite of the mayor, only to back down?

    That’s what I meant by a “rallying cry” that would not be enough to gain supporters.

  8. Mr. Pelletier:

    While I appreciate your reply and wish you luck in your campaign, I’d simply say that if you’re already apologizing for Mrs. Fogarty’s campaign, it’s not a good sign.

    The tone and management of a campaign are key qualities to predicting how a candidate would manage the office they’re seeking. What does it say when a campaign can’t get an invite in the mail in time to get a bigger crowd at its first major event?

    As for the idea of a “fair shake,” consider this: Mrs. Fogarty is running for Mayor of Cranston. It’s not the White House, certainly, but in our neck of the woods, it’s a big deal. In a sense, the fair shake must be earned — a candidate can’t expect press coverage or donations, not to mention votes, just by getting his or her name on the ballot.

    I still see no evidence that Mrs. Fogarty will be able to run the kind of organized citywide campaign that will beat Fung in the fall. Her next steps — getting into a campaign HQ (Mike Sepe is negotiating for Nap’s former digs on Park Avenue, I hear tell — but where’s the money going to come from?), hiring a manager for the campaign (someone who has actually done it before, preferably), and organizing a real, formal kickoff event — will have to be much better organized than this announcement if she expects to have even a remote chance in this race.

  9. Without getting too far into it for obvious reasons, I’d like to alert any candidates and their supporters about the time lines needed to obtain Herald coverage. The Cranston Herald is put together on Tuesdays and sent to production. The print version becomes available during the day on Wednesday and is delivered to subscribers usually on Thursday. The on-line version, which replicates the print versions with only minor alterations, is usually uploaded on mid-day Thursday.

    Now, Fogarty’s campaign kick off was on Tuesday at 4:00. So, even assuming that all went according to plan (e.g. snail mail invites, etc.) and a crowd of thousands appeared in front of city hall at the appointed hour, the event still wouldn’t have appeared in last week’s Herald. I haven’t seen this week’s edition so I don’t know if it made it in the paper.

    For the sake of accuracy, I was at the kick-off, but went independent of the Herald. As for giving Cindy a “fair shake” I fully expect that she’ll receive one at least from the Herald. That, of course, doesn’t translate into a “free ride” but I’m sure it will be fair. As for our friends at the projo, historically that fine institution has had at best a spotty performance record of covering local political events. More often than not, the projo doesn’t even publish campaign press releases (which sometimes are newsworthy) let alone show up at “events”. As someone who’s been through this before, my advice is to just get used to it. It’s not you – it’s them.

  10. Thank you Geoff for the insight of the projo and herald political coverage. Now, im clear on that issue and i know where not to send my press release to

    To Jesse; please dont consider my tone as an early sign of defeat, I am very sure we have a excellent and fair chance of electing the first female mayor of cranston. “we” being the democratic voters of course.

  11. JFC,

    Just an observation, but in the past you made it clear that you don’t think highly of Cindy Fogarty. Make sure that opinion of her doesn’t cloud your judgment regarding her ability. And if you paraphrase, you may want to omit the quotation marks.

  12. Mr. Pelletier:

    I didn’t read your post as “an early sign of defeat.” In fact, I think you may be overly optimistic.

    This is a point I’ve offered on a previous thread, and I’d appreciate your insight:

    In the 2006 race, Mike Napolitano won by fewer than 100 votes out of 32,000 in what was termed a Dem “tidal wave.” That result tells me that many Democratic voters went for Fung — and, I believe, they will do it again this year. I don’t mean to misconstrue what you’re saying, but if you’re counting on 16,000 automatic Dem votes (or any number, for that matter), I’m afraid you’ll be sorely disappointed.

    This is also part of the basis for my stance that the Fogarty campaign has to do a better job if it’s going to have a chance.

    Nap had the money, the staff, the events, etc. and couldn’t pull off a major victory. Fung has had 2 more years in the press criticizing Nap, he has campaign money to burn, already has an office open on Reservoir Avenue (very cleverly along Fogarty’s route to work), and has probably paid for a poll or two. If Fogarty can’t at least reach the level of Nap’s campaign — and quickly — she won’t have a shot.

    (By the way, is it 2 l’s or 1? You’ve spelled your name both ways and I want to post it correctly.)


    I don’t think my judgment is “clouded” by anything other than informed observation. Still, maybe you’d like to take a shot at arguing that 1.) getting the nomination by default and 2.) kicking off a campaign with a poorly-attended speech that was virtually ignored are good signs for a campaign.

    And sorry I confused you by using quotation marks, but I’m certain it was a correct usage.

  13. Isn’t this the bank that posed problems for a neighborhood in Forest Hills. They just got fined $800K by the feds and need to reserve $5 million to make good to their customers.

    link to story

    Then click on “Domestic Bank being investigated by federal authorities” in WPRI’s web site

  14. Jesse,
    Just to quickly touch on your previous reply to the Ghost: 1) It is my opinion that both candidates received their party’s nomination/endorsement by default…there is not going to be a Republican primary either, correct?
    One could argue, and I would as well, that based on his strong showing in ’06 that Fung would more than likely be the party standard bearer in ’08. But in world where HRC and her seasoned campaign staff watched their seemingly inevitable coronation/nomination never see the light of day…there are no givens. 2) The Fogarty campaign has not “kicked off” it’s campaign yet. The event at City Hall last week was a DCC event and was used to introduce the slate. Unless I’m mistaken, and I believe that I am not, the Fung Kick Off event at the Knights of Columbus hall behind City Hall wasn’t exactly packed to the rafters. I was at a Comp. Plan workshop in Council Chambers that night and from outward appearances the Kick Off event did not seem all that well attended. It’s quite apparent that Allan will be a very formidable opponent for Cindy or anyone for that matter, but if one thinks that this contest is over, they are sorely mistaken.

  15. My apologies… In my previous post I mentioned that the Fung Kick-Off event was held at “the Knights of Columbus hall behind City Hall.” It is actually a VFW Post.

  16. Richard:

    My point with using the term “by default” was a reference to the fact that five other potential Dem mayoral candidates backed out of the race. As you suggest, Fung earned his position as unrivaled GOP nominee — my counterpoint to that is, Fogarty got the nomination only after everyone else gave up. I don’t think her loss to Nap in the 06 primary exactly scared anyone away from a potential campaign against her this year.

    No, the reasons for the other defections were external — poor name recognition, strength in Fung’s poll numbers, lack of fundraising potential, distaste for the job the next Mayor will be expected to do (i.e., raise taxes and fight lawsuits against the school department).

    Bottom line, this is a poor showing for both parties — they’re pitting the two losers from the last campaign against each other for this race. Not something I’d be proud of, to say the least.

    As for using the term “kick off,” I refer you to the headline to this thread.

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