Rhode Island Governor Throws Himself Under the Bus

1198003945Despite our horrific commute during Thursday evening’s snowstorm, we were pretty calm about the whole thing. But when state and city officials started laying blame for the gridlock and chaos on everyone but themselves, we were happy to play along. Things happened a little differently in Rhode Island, where Gov. Don Carcieri took most of the heat.

The Ocean State isn’t known for its warm and fuzzy political scene, so we were a little surprised to see the governor accept responsibility on behalf of his administration, who spearheaded the response while Carcieri was in the Middle East.

At his first news conference since returning from a weeklong trip to the Middle East, Governor Carcieri yesterday acknowledged his administration did a “poor job” of communicating with the public during last week’s paralyzing snowstorm.

“I would not expect them to track me down in Afghanistan or Iraq for a 6-to-10-inch snowstorm. Would you? I wouldn’t expect that … I got notified that the thing got turned into a really tough day after it was over.”

Did anyone in his administration drop the ball? “No, I don’t think so at all,” he said. “You can plow snow, you can’t plow cars.”

Well that’s no fun. Why should we learn from our mistakes when we can blame them on somebody else?

Carcieri did call out the panicked drivers who flooded the state’s roadways.

“You may not like to hear that,” Carcieri said, but “if I get in my car and get on [Route] 95 with snow coming down at 3 inches an hour … that’s a decision I make. To expect that somehow we’re going to miraculously clear the snow off the highways, alright, and get you through that with no headaches, I don’t think is fair, frankly.”

Somebody had to say it. Hopefully, Carcieri said it loudly enough for someone in Massachusetts to hear him.