News & Brews August 19, 2022

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Happening today: DeSantis/Mastriano rally in Pittsburgh

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis will appear at a rally today in Pittsburgh with GOP gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that DeSantis is “making the trip as part of a swing to help Donald Trump-backed candidates in key electoral areas.” Speaking of the visit, Mastriano said, “We’re out-funded, obviously. The media is massively in the pocket of my opponent, working hard for him. So it’s imperative that Republicans come together. For Ron DeSantis to kick off his Unite & Win tour in Pennsylvania — I think — is very apropos since this is where it all began in 1776.”

Religion and the governor’s race

Also on the gubernatorial front, the Inquirer says past comments by Mastriano are coming back to haunt him, as he’s previously questioned man-made climate change and said not all religions are created equal and not all religions are compatible with the ConstitutionSee the Inky story here.

Cook Political Report changes rating in Pa. Senate race

The Cook Political Report changed its rating of the race for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania from “toss-up” to “lean Democrat,” The Hill reports. The change was one of three Cook made reflecting “that the landscape ha[s] changed since prior to the start of the primaries, when [Cook] believed Republicans were more than likely to flip control of the upper chamber.” The other two changes were in Colorado, where the rating went from “likely Democrat” to “lean Democrat” and Utah, where the rating changed from “solid Republican” to “likely Republican.”

Most counties apply for state election grants, even with rules attached

The Inquirer reports that all but four Pennsylvania counties are requesting a share of $45 million in new state funding for elections, despite some counties’ concerns over conditions for the funding. “The biggest issue, county elections officials said, is the requirement to begin counting mail ballots at 7 a.m. on Election Day and continue uninterrupted until the vote count is complete. That will require changes to staffing and elections processes, counties said, in many cases including hiring and training more staff and potentially adding to the exhausting workload of elections administrators.” Counties not requesting the funding were Crawford, Bradford, and Montour, while Susquehanna reportedly applied but then withdrew its application.

Mastriano op-ed: ‘Pennsylvanians losing hope over inflation woes’

Republican gubernatorial nominee Doug Mastriano has an op-ed in the Delaware Valley Journal recounting comments he’s hearing from Pennsylvanians on how inflation is harming them. He writes of his efforts in the state Senate to ease the burden on Pennsylvanians, including sponsoring bills to temporarily reduce the gas tax and to extend property tax relief. Read his piece here.

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