News & Brews May 11, 2023

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Dems dump nearly $1M into special House election

The progressive Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that Democrats have poured $979,343 into the special House election in Delaware County. This is per a campaign finance report filed by Democrat nominee Heather Boyd. The race will determine not only this particular seat but also the partisan makeup of the House. Democrats have an advantage in the district. But the high spending by the party has raised speculation that the race might be too close for comfort for Dems.

Shapiro, lawmakers join Biden’s re-election board

Whatever some Democrats think of President Biden’s running for re-election, Gov. Josh Shapiro and several Pa. Democrat lawmakers appear fully on board—literally. Shapiro, along with U.S. Reps Chrissy Houlahan and Brendan Boyle as well as state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta have all been named to the national advisory board for Biden’s re-election campaign.

Senate committee advances ready-to-drink cocktail bill

The Senate Law & Justice Committee voted 6-5 to advance legislation, sponsored by Sen. Mike Regan (Cumberland and York counties), that would allow establishments that sell beer and wine also to sell ready-to-drink cocktails. It’s the latest move in a continued effort to loosen the ridiculous monopolistic stranglehold state government maintains over the liquor business.

New attack ads up in Allegheny County exec. race

The Post-Gazette reports, “With state Rep. Sara Innamorato taking the lead in a recent survey of the race for Allegheny County executive, rivals Michael Lamb and John Weinstein are launching sharp new broadsides just a week before the May 16 primary election.” Both are airing new 30-second TV ads attacking Innamorato. Of course, we won’t know until next week if the ads have their intended effect.

Op-Ed: State funding is half the battle in education freedom

Susquehanna International Group Co-Founder and Managing Director Jeff Yass writes in Forbes that allowing state education dollars to follow the child to the school of their family’s choice is only half the battle. The other half is allowing local funding to do the same. “To realize the full potential of choice programs and education freedom,” Yass writes, “local officials – mayors, city councils, county governments – will need to become active in making this funding fair and equitable.” This begins with a change in perspective from ‘funding classrooms’ to ‘funding people.’

Op-Ed: Consensus needed to make government work

Pa. House Republican Whip Tim O’Neal (Washington County) writes that the heightened polarization between the extremes of each political party prevents progress. “This just-say-no worldview has hamstrung Congress and immobilized state legislatures,” he notes. “It makes news when anything gets done at all, whether that something is good, bad or indifferent…. It’s time for both sides to tone down the rhetoric, lower the volume and acknowledge that government only works when we find consensus. It’s out there. We just have to stop seeking momentary political advantage and respect the idea of real progress.”

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