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Nicholas Mattiello elected Rhode Island speaker

Nicholas Mattiello elected Rhode Island speaker

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island's House majority leader has been elected speaker in a lopsided vote, days after the abrupt resignation of one of the state government's most powerful figures.

Nicholas Mattiello, a Cranston Democrat, won the vote 61-6, with six abstentions and two absent, on Tuesday to succeed Gordon Fox. House Oversight Chairman Michael Marcello had challenged Mattiello, but conceded hours earlier, saying he didn't have the votes to win.

Fox resigned as speaker Saturday, one day after criminal investigators raided his Statehouse office and home. Authorities have declined to detail what the probe is about or say whether Fox is a target.

Mattiello is an attorney who was first elected to the legislature in 2006 and has served as majority leader since 2010. He's known as a staunch Catholic and conservative Democrat, though he voted last year to legalize gay marriage.

 

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