Last night, the Rhode Island House of Representatives unveiled their new budget, and in a rebuke of Democrat Governor Gina Raimondo, the Democrat-controlled chamber gutted her plan for “free college” – her signature proposal of 2017. After spending months promoting her plan and even enlisting the help of the Democratic Governors Association to spend almost a half a million dollars on a national PR campaign backing it, the House Budget funds less than a third of the $10 million Raimondo requested for her program while offering it at only one of the three institutions she originally proposed.
The Associated Press reports:
“The scaled-back plan would cover two years of free tuition for in-state community college students. [Raimondo’s spokesman] said it would cost about $3 million in its first year and rise to $6 million in subsequent years.
Raimondo’s original plan also would have provided free tuition for students in the second and fourth years at the University of Rhode Island and Rhode Island College. That plan was dropped in a compromise with legislative leaders.”
Even with national Democrat groups backing her agenda with campaign ads, Gina Raimondo simply can’t get her plans through. Raimondo oversold and under-delivered on her signature legislative proposal and in the end, got only a fraction of what she proposed from a legislature dominated by her own party.