News & Brews August 22, 2022

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New poll shows small leads for Fetterman, Shapiro

A new Trafalgar Group poll of 1,096 likely voters shows Democrat John Fetterman leading Republican Mehmet Oz 48.4% to 43.5% in the race for U.S. Senate. Meanwhile, Democrat Josh Shapiro leads Republican Doug Mastriano 48.6% to 44.7%. The poll was conducted August 15-18 and has a 2.9% margin of error.

Judge orders counties to count undated mail-in ballots

On Friday, Commonwealth Court Judge Renee Cohn Jubelirer ruled in favor of the Wolf administration, ordering Berks, Fayette, and Lancaster counties to count mail-in ballots that lacked a handwritten-date on the return envelope. In her opinion, Jubelirer wrote that “the lack of a handwritten date on the declaration on the return envelope of a timely received absentee or mail-ballot does not support excluding those ballots from the Boards’ certified results under both Pennsylvania law and Section 10101(a)(2)(B) of the Civil Rights Act.”

Analysis: New state budget doles out $1.3B in corporate welfare

Our 2022-2023 state budget, approved in July, includes a whopping $1.3 billion in corporate handouts, according to a new analysis from the Commonwealth Foundation. Among the findings: “The top recipients of corporate welfare spending include the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program, the Pennsylvania Racehorse Development Fund, and the Entertainment Production Tax Credit (a combination of the film tax credit and entertainment economic enhancement tax credit).” The Center Square has more.

Cost of Pa. Supreme Court anniversary celebration raises eyebrows

LancasterOnline reports that the Pa. Supreme Court spent at least $147,000 in taxpayer dollars “for a multi-day celebration of its 300th birthday in Philadelphia.” The story continues, “Preceded by a one-day session in the city, the May event was marked by catered luncheons and dinners. Justices stayed at a swank hotel, but the name of that hotel was redacted from records provided to LNP | LancasterOnline for security reasons, said court spokesperson Stacey Witalec.” The event also received additional funding from the Pennsylvania Bar Association, the Philadelphia Bar Association, and the Allegheny County Bar Association.

Trump to campaign in Pa. for Mastriano, Oz

Former President Trump plans to come to Pennsylvania late next week to stump for GOP gubernatorial nominee Doug Mastriano and GOP U.S. Senate nominee Mehmet Oz. The rally is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 3 in Wilkes-Barre.

At Mastriano rally, DeSantis talks education, immigration, party unity, & more

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis hit on topics ranging from Covid shutdowns, education, and immigration to women’s sports, elections, and more at a rally on Friday in Pittsburgh in support of GOP gubernatorial nominee Doug Mastriano. While highlighting actions he’s taken to uphold conservative principles in Florida, DeSantis called on Pennsylvania Republicans to unite behind Mastriano, as Pennsylvania, DeSantis says, is now quite possibly the “most important swing state in the country.” The Post-Gazette has more, and you can watch a replay of the event here.

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