News & Brews September 19, 2022

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Latest polls show tightening races for governor, U.S. Senate

On Friday, the Trafalgar Group released its latest polls in the race for Pennsylvania governor and U.S. Senate, and the numbers are tight. In the governor’s race, Democrat Josh Shapiro leads Republican Doug Mastriano 47.4% to 45.4%, which is within the 2.9% margin of error. In the Senate race, Democrat John Fetterman leads Republican Mehmet Oz 47.7% to 45.9%, also within the margin of error. The poll, which was conducted Sept. 13-15, surveyed 1078 likely voters

‘Good government’ group head says asking voters to weigh in on issues is bad government

Filed under, “Things that make you go hmmm.” Al Schmidt, the head of the so-called good government organization the Committee of Seventy, wrote in the Inquirer that the Legislature’s choice to send multiple issues to voters to decide via constitutional amendment constitutes an “abuse” that “circumvent[s] our institutional checks and balances.” He further claims this choice ‘rushes’ a process meant to be “deliberative and transparent.” Huh? Enacting a constitutional amendment requires that it pass both chambers of the Legislature in two consecutive sessions then be approved by voters—a process that can takes from months to years. That’s an odd definition of ‘rushed’.

Shapiro says he embraces school choice

After accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars from anti-school-choice teachers’ unions, Democrat Josh Shapiro now claims he supports Lifeline Scholarships, which allow money to follow the child to the school of their parents’ choice. Read more here.

2nd Annual Pa. March for Life happening today

PennLive reports that the second annual Pennsylvania March for Life is expected to draw more than 100 busloads of people to the state Capitol steps today. The rally, which begins at 11am, will be preceded by a 9:30am mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral not far from the Capitol and then a 10am pre-rally prayer. Among those scheduled to speak at the rally are GOP House Speaker Bryan Cutler (Lancaster County), Senate Majority Leader Kim Ward (Westmoreland County), and Sen. Judy Ward (Blair, Cumberland, Franklin, Fulton, and Huntingdon counties). You can watch the live-stream of the 11am rally here.

Western Pa. House race getting national attention

The Post-Gazette reports that the race for Pennsylvania’s 17th Congressional District has drawn “the attention of the national [party] committees and their respective PACs, each side committing a few million dollars to buy time on the Pittsburgh airwaves where money can stretch further than in larger U.S. media markets.” Republican Jeremy Shaffer is running against Democrat Chris Deluzio for this seat, which is being vacated by outgoing U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb.

Democrat bill would require state approval for hospital sales

Democrat lawmakers in the House and Senate are introducing legislation that “would require approval from the state before a hospital or hospital system could be purchased,” the Morning Call reports. Republicans, who control the Legislature, oppose the measure. Defending it, one physician said, “I don’t like to interfere with free enterprise. But a hospital is different. It is a public trust.” Isn’t it ironic that attempts to interfere with the free market are almost always couched in terms of “I love the free-market, but this case is different!”

Some counties cry foul over increase in RTK requests

It appears some county officials view transparency as a burden. PennLive reports that many county elections officials “say they are dealing with an unusual number of Right-to-Know requests for voting and election-related records.” The most concerning sentiment came from Bucks County Commissioner Chairman Bob Harvie, who said, “Unfortunately, we have witnessed the coordinated weaponization of the RTK process for the last two years by anti-maskers, anti-vaxers, and election deniers. It really does jam up our offices and overwhelm county staff who must process hundreds of requests and painstakingly review thousands of documents.” Dear Commissioner Harvie: Transparency isn’t an infringement on your job. It is your job.

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