News & Brews September 1, 2022

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Shapiro reserves nearly $17 million in fall air time

NBC News’ National Political Reporter Henry Gomez reported via Tweet that Democrat Josh Shapiro’s campaign for governor “is placing an initial $16.9 million TV airtime reservation for the fall campaign, starting next Tuesday. More could be added, and with this, Shapiro has committed about $35 million to TV so far.” By comparison, Republican Doug Mastriano has not made any major TV ad buys.

Fetterman leads by 5 points in latest poll

A new poll by Susquehanna Polling and Research shows Democrat John Fetterman with a 49%-44% lead over Republican Mehmet Oz. This is in line with a recent Emerson College Poll showing Fetterman holding a 48%-44% lead over Oz. The Susquehanna poll notes that “Oz leads with constituencies that can swing the election – namely ‘inflation’ voters and senior citizens…. Economy/inflation voters are voting for Oz 52:40.” The poll comes as many consider Oz’s campaign to be struggling.

Can Oz make a comeback?

McClatchy reports that even as Mehmet Oz continues to trail John Fetterman in the race for U.S. Senate, “Republicans now see seeds for a potential rebound against the Democratic front-runner, which is rooted in an unrelenting advertising assault on a record they see as largely unchallenged and questions about his ability to perform senatorial duties as Fetterman continues to recover from a severe stroke he suffered last spring.” Meanwhile, Republicans are also trying to capitalize on Fetterman’s refusal thus far to commit to a debate.

Thousands of Pa. nursing home workers may strike

Notwithstanding that the state budget passed this summer allocated $600 million to help with caregiving in nursing homes, thousands of nursing home workers may soon strike. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review explains, “At issue is how much of the $600 million earmarked by Gov. Tom Wolf and the legislature will actually go to workers who say they are working longer hours, taking duties outside their jobs, and even rationing food for residents.” SEIU Healthcare PA “is demanding that the increased funding be spent on higher wages and better benefits for nursing home workers to stem turnover.” Without an agreement, workers at 14 nursing homes are scheduled to go on strike on Sept. 2, with workers at another four nursing homes going on strike Sept. 9.

Federal student loan holders in Pa. could see $24B in benefits

“Pennsylvanians with federal student loans could collectively see about $24 billion in benefits under the Biden administration’s debt relief plan, according to estimates released Wednesday by a state budget agency,” reports the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Per the state’s Independent Fiscal Office, “which relied in part on analysis from the Penn Wharton Budget Model,” about 90% of this will come from the loan forgiveness part of President Biden’s plan.

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