News & Brews January 12 2022

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Will Trump’s influence impact GOP gubernatorial race?

Politico features Pennsylvania’s gubernatorial election in a piece looking at states that former President Trump lost in 2020 but where (some) gubernatorial candidates are “crafting their campaign in his image.” But not everyone agrees on the impact. “[E]ven with Trump playing an increasingly prominent role in gubernatorial races,” the piece notes, “some Republican strategists believe that it won’t last through the general election in November.” Read more here.

Wolf admin says no further Covid restrictions ‘at this time’

Watch out for those clarifiers. Yesterday, Acting Secretary of Health Keara Klinepeter saidthe Wolf administration is “not considering further [Covid] mitigation at this time.” Klinepeter also cast a note of trusting the people, stating the administration “believe[s] Pennsylvanians will do the right thing.” When ABC27’s Dennis Owens pointed out that this approach seems to be a change from earlier, Klinepeter responded, “We’ve always had the opinion that Pennsylvanians will do the right thing.” Could have fooled us! You can watch the full press conference here.

Editorial: Population shift doesn’t bode well for PA

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Editorial Board bemoans Pennsylvania’s anemic growth rate, noting it’s “far slower than the national average.” Notably, the editorial shares that “[a[bout 35% of residents cited a new job as their reason for leaving; an additional 28% cited family reasons and 20% retirement.” The ed board shies away from blaming policies for the exodus, but then states, “It’s time for Pennsylvania to jump-start an honest debate and self-assessment on how it attracts, or doesn’t attract, jobs and residents. Why is Florida, for example, growing and Pennsylvania shrinking?” Who wants to tell them?

Toomey op-ed: Democrats’ election bill would undermine voting rights

Sen. Pat Toomey has an op-ed in the Philadelphia Inquirer, explaining the the proposed federal takeover of elections would undermine the very voting rights that Democrats claim to want to support. Read it here.

Rep. Sonney to retire

Yesterday, Rep. Curt Sonney (Erie), who serves as chair of the House Education Committee, announced he will retire at the end of this legislative session. Sonney has served in the House since 2004. He’s been added to the progressive Pennsylvania Capital-Star’s list of lawmakers who have announced they’re not seeking re-election this year. Check out that list here.

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