News & Brews November 23, 2021

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Judge hears oral argument in Lehigh County mail-in ballot case

As House lawmakers have cautioned they would act to remove the Lehigh County Board of Elections over voting to accept mail-in-ballots that lack the legally required date on the outside envelope, a judge yesterday heard oral argument in the case. The Morning Call reports, Lehigh County Judge Edward Reibman said … he would work to issue a timely opinion, but his decision is likely to be only the first word. … Whichever way Reibman rules, the losing party will probably appeal.” Hmmm, if Lehigh County is allowed to simply ignore the law, what will that mean for other counties come the 2022 election?

PA does terrible job tracking COVID breakthrough cases

Gee, I’ve been saying this for months. While some states provide weekly breakdowns of COVID breakthrough infections, Pennsylvania does not, the Inquirer writes. Of course, read the story and you’ll think the blame goes to outdated systems, not enough money, etc. etc. But given an administration that’s balked at transparency throughout the pandemic, I’m not buying it.

Parnell suspends senate campaign

Republican Sean Parnell has suspended his campaign for U.S. Senate after losing custody of his children to his estranged wife following a legal battle. The race for the open senate seat is expected to be hotly contested, as Democrats hope to flip the seat following Sen. Pat Toomey’s retirement.

Op-Ed: The Taxpayer Protection Act would help Pennsylvanians

The Commonwealth Foundation’s Nathan Benefield has a new op-ed in the Morning Callwarning that over the next two years, Pennsylvanians can expect “‘overspending and massive deficits” from Harrisburg unless lawmakers act to protect them. Nathan writes that the starting point is the Taxpayer Protection Act, a constitutional amendment that would “limit state spending to the rate of economic growth.” Read his piece here.

Op-ed: In pursuit of climate nirvana, politicians ignore consumers

Gordon Tomb of the CO2 Coalition has a piece in RealClear Markets highlighting how consumer costs are being ignored as politicians—including those in PA—pursue questionable climate plans. Regarding Gov. Wolf, the piece notes he “has proposed a carbon tax, which the CO2 Coalition found has no scientific or economic justification.Being a Pennsylvania electricity customer, we called the Office of Consumer Advocate asking who is looking out for the interests of the consumer with regard to climate policy. We’ve gotten no response. We put the question to a former head of the office who declined to speak on the record.” Yep, there you have it.

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