News & Brews June 22, 2022

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Data dive into Pa. primary shows shifting political geography

The Inquirer analyzed a ton of data from the recent primary election to determine voter turnout by party, rural vs. suburban divides by party, candidate support by region, historical turnout comparisons, vote-by-mail likelihood, and more. The Inky’s conclusion from the data is that “the state’s political geography is shifting.” Click here for the story (complete with lots of charts).

Pa. House Speaker rejected pressure from Trump post-2020 election

Newly released information shows that after the 2020 elections, Pa. House Speaker Bryan Cutler was contacted several times by the Trump campaign, “looking to discuss election-related theories with the state House’s highest-ranking lawmaker.” Cutler reportedly “felt that calls from Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani were ‘inappropriate,’ prompting Cutler to direct his lawyers to ask Giulani not to call again. He did anyway….” Cutler then became the target of protests at his home and office. City & State PA has more.

Senate committee advances Lifeline Scholarship bill; Dems object

Yesterday, the Senate Education Committee voted along party lines to advance legislation that would offer public school students attending low-performing schools (defined as the bottom 15% in performance) scholarships to access better educational options. The legislation, which Gov. Wolf opposes, now heads to the full Senate for consideration.

Senate committee votes to protect kids from hyper-sexualization in schools; Dems object

Yesterday, the Senate Education Committee also advanced (along party lines) two bills“designed to give parents final say on when their child is exposed to sexually explicit content in school materials” and to prevent “instruction in elementary grades on gender identity and sexual orientation.” Notably, some of the content in question is so sexually explicit that GOP Sen. Michele Brooks pointed out that senators had to hand-deliver it to other senators for awareness of the materials in question, as sending them electronically would violate Senate policy. While the sexually explicit material is restricted in the workplace, all Democrats on the committee voted to allow it to be presented to young children in schools without parental consent.

4th hearing on inflation focuses on business taxes

Yesterday, the House Republican Majority Committee held its fourth and final hearing on the causes and impacts of inflation. Testifiers at the hearing included “tax experts and employer advocates [who spoke] about long-term solutions to rising costs and how best to drive investment and create growth in the Commonwealth.” Read the recap here, or click here for links to video and written testimony from the hearing.

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