Gemma announces candidacy for Congress


Democrat Anthony Gemma is taking another shot at the 1st Congressional District seat held by U.S. Rep. David Cicilline.

Gemma made his campaign platform quite clear during his candidacy announcement speech at Prospect Park in Providence on Sunday evening.

“This election comes down to a simple choice: Who among the candidates is best equipped and therefore most likely to create thousands of well-paying, long-term jobs in Rhode Island?” said Gemma. 

Gemma points to how his creation of jobs in the private sector as the head of Gem Plumbing and Heating qualifies him to put the best plan in place to decrease the state’s unemployment rate. 

In his speech, Gemma steered clear of attacking incumbent Ciciline. instead, he focused on Republican Brendan Doherty. 

“He has zero understanding of the basic policies required to bring about economic recovery in Rhode Island and, by extension, in America,” Gemma said.

Doherty released a statement after the announcement saying, “As the only candidate with the proven track record of leadership and the character necessary to restore economic growth to Rhode Island and throughout America, I will continue to reach out to the voters of the first Congressional District regarding my plans to cut wasteful government spending, balance our budget and get Rhode Islanders back to work.”

Cicilline’s public relations team in Washington also released a statement.

“David Cicilline is working incredibly hard every day to get things done for the people of Rhode Island and to earn their support … and this race is going to be about who can best stand up for the middle class and that person is David Cicilline,” a spokesman said.

At Sunday’s event, Gemma supporters were singing his praises.

“What else can you ask for? He’s a very honest man who’s sincere and very hard working, and I do believe he’ll be able to make a difference,” said Linda Tessitore of North Providence.

Cicilline defeated Gemma and two other Democrats in the 2010 primary.

Gemma announces candidacy for Congress

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