A Reply to Dom Giordano About Mumia Abu-Jamal

I don’t blame Dom Giordano for wanting convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal to shut the hell up. But even after reading Giordano’s case for anti-Mumia legislation in today’s Daily News, I’m still worried about what the bill would mean for the First Amendment.

Giordano, bless him, quotes me in making his argument for a bill that would give victims the right to sue offenders for “perpetuating” their anguish long after the crime and conviction are over.

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Gun Debate About to Flare Up in Pennsylvania Senate

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The gun debate seems likely to get heated today in the Pennsylvania Senate.

We told you last week about House Bill 1243, which would give the NRA standing to sue local cities and municipalities for having gun laws more restrictive than allowed by the state. When Democrats promised to weigh that bill down with a number of amendments, Republicans withdrew it last week from consideration from the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Instead, they’ve taken it directly to the Senate floor. Democrats who oppose the bill say Republicans plan to amend it today to House Bill 1746 — a bill otherwise designed to offer new protections to the state’s domestic violence victims — then “call the question” immediately, so that no debate on that amendment, or additional amendments, will be allowed: Only a quick up-or-down vote that Republicans seem likely to win on straight party representation.

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Poll: Christie Hits Low With Jersey Voters

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He’s thought to be running for president in 2016, but Chris Christie hasn’t done much to stoke support among New Jersey residents back home: A poll shows he’s hit a new low in his favorability ratings among Garden State voters.

Reuters reports:

The Rutgers-Eagleton poll of 842 New Jersey residents showed that 42 percent of registered voters feel favorable toward Christie while 45 percent feel unfavorable. For the first time since August 2011, more voters in the state have an unfavorable impression of him than a favorable one, the poll said. Read more »

Hughes: Let Governor Abolish SRC

State Sen. Vincent Hughes is pushing a bill in Harrisburg that would give the governor the power to dissolve the School Reform Commission. Under current law, the SRC has the power to dissolve itself — but nobody else has that power over the SRC.
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Can Tom Wolf Govern Pennsylvania?

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Polls suggest that Tom Wolf will almost certainly be the next governor of Pennsylvania. But will a Governor Wolf actually be able to govern?

It’s not a silly question. If he takes office, Wolf will likely contend with a Republican-led legislature in both houses. (There’s some hope among Democrats that they can flip the Senate, but that still seems a long shot.) One need look no further than Washington D.C. to know that the combination of a Democratic executive and a GOP legislature can produce an excess of gridlock. Voters will presumably want Wolf to enact an agenda, but how far can he get with it?

“Wolf,” said Terry Madonna, professor of public affairs at Franklin and Marshall College, “is going to have his hands full.”

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Philly Elections Chair in Hot Water for Not Voting for Last 5 Elections

Yesterday, City Paper reported a small, if hilarious piece of news: Anthony Clark, who heads the Philadelphia City Commissioners office, has not voted in the last five elections. Clark, a Democrat, even missed the 2012 presidential election!

The paper added the other two city commissioners, Stephanie Singer and Al Schmidt, have voted in every election as far back as records go (2005). How could Clark have possibly missed that many elections? He certainly knew when the elections were! He could not have possibly forgotten!

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Mumia Makes Us Crazy

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Let’s concede a few things about Mumia Abu-Jamal right off the top: He’s a bad man. A convicted, apparently unrepentant cop killer. A poseur surrounded by a cult of feeble-minded radical chic. He’s not a man who reasonably deserves to be, say, the commencement speaker at your local college.

But so often, the people who hate him most make everything much worse.

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