Inky politics writer Thomas Fitzgerald reports that IBEW Local 98, led by John J. Dougherty, will present Rep. Allyson Schwartz a $100,000 check for her gubernatorial bid at tonight’s fundraiser for her. “The union, led by its influential manager business manager John J. Dougherty, announced its endorsement decision ahead of a fundraiser it is hosting for Schwartz at the union hall in the Spring Garden section of Philadelphia Wednesday night.” That’s a big Democratic establishment endorsement; will other dominoes fall quickly, or will the nomination battle go long and help Tom Corbett?
Last summer, we published a list of 12 very weird Pennsylvania laws. Many in Harrisburg think it’s weird that we don’t have a law protecting dogs and cats from human consumption, which is currently legal as long as the animal is humanely slaughtered: The state senate is considering legislation that would ban the practice, following reports of college kids cooking dogs. (The House has already passed the bill.)
Vince Fumo is less than four months out of prison and already considering a run for office. Now, cool your jets, Pennsylvania state law means he can’t run for elected office, strictly speaking. But he can run for party office, and become a behind-the-scenes player.
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Did you know that in Pennsylvania, potatoes must be sold in packages weighing three , five 10 pounds, 15, 20, 25, or 50 pounds—and then multiples of 100 pounds. We didn’t either, but apparently it’s so, and apparently it’s a pain in the ass for Pennsylvania grocery stores. NewsWorks reports the a change to the law is under way.
One paradox of Tom Corbett’s deep, deep unpopularity with Pennsylvania voters is that vulnerability has enticed a great many Democrats into next year’s gubernatorial race—creating a “free for all” that could destroy the party’s chances to capture the seat.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!
A hearty round of applause to Pennsylvania’s Republican-controlled House and Senate! By granting GOP Governor Tom Corbett his most highly sought prize — the nation’s highest gas and diesel taxes — the legislature has ensured two things:
1) Tommy Boy will lose next year’s election by an even bigger margin, and
2) He is now likely to achieve the impossible: an approval rating in the single digits.
To be fair, the last one’s not all that hard, since he was already in the toilet at a historically low 17 percent approval.
About the only thing more monumental than the rear-ending Corbett just gave his citizens via the second-largest tax increase in state history is his “bi-partisan” legacy, as no one has done more for the Democratic Party.
CBS Philly reports that State Rep. Daryl Metcalfe has introduced a resolution of impeachment against Attorney General Kathleen Kane, whom he says shirked her duties by failing to defend the state’s laws banning gay marriage.
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After a late, late, late-night vote on Tuesday to pass the State House, the state’s big transportation bill passed the Senate easily on Wednesday, 43-7. It’ll go back to the House, which will pass it, and then to Corbett’s desk for a signature. This not only gives Corbett one of the big legislative accomplishments he’s been striving for for three years, but some much-needed cash for roads, bridges, and even little old SEPTA.
The good news? “Gov. Tom Corbett’s hopes for a major legislative win came roaring back to life Tuesday, as the state House voted 104-95 to give key preliminary approval to a multi-pronged, $2.4 billion transportation funding program,” the Patriot-News reports. (We don’t care about Corbett’s hopes, but we do care about transportation funding.)
“But no one was lighting victory cigars Tuesday night. That’s because the House plan contains a key change that has not passed muster in the state Senate yet: a modest, albeit once-in-a-generation reform to Pennsylvania’s prevailing wage statute.The bill raises the cost threshold at which the law’s minimum wage requirements kick in for transportation construction projects from an outdated $25,000 at present, to $100,000 going forward.” The question is: Is that union-busting enough or too union-busting for the Senate to accept? We’ll find out soon.