News & Brews June 7, 2023

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2nd Dem enters race for attorney general

Former Democrat Bucks County Solicitor Joe Khan has announced his run for state attorney general. Khan, who formerly served as a prosecutor in the Philly DA’s office and the U.S. Attorney’s office, previously ran for Philly district attorney in 2017, losing to Larry Krasner. Khan is the second Democrat to enter the race, as former Auditor General Eugene DePasquale also recently announced his bid. So far, no Republicans have officially entered the fray.

Dems’ $663M energy tax ‘will cripple Pa. families’

Yesterday, House GOP Policy Committee Chair Josh Kail (Beaver and Washington counties) held a press conference denouncing the $663 million energy tax included in Gov. Shapiro’s and House Democrats’ budget proposal. The tax stems from Pa.’s forced entry into the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). Kail noted that “the tax would increase electricity rates by nearly four times,” per projections from the state’s Independent Fiscal Office. Pa.’s participation in RGGI is currently being challenged in court.

Philly’s mayoral election results show city’s ‘Democratic machine still runs’

In a Q&A in City Journal, RealClear Pennsylvania Editor Charles McElwee breaks down the results of Philly’s Democrat mayoral primary. McElwee notes, “[Cherelle] Parker’s victory shows that the city’s long-time Democratic machine—though diminished thanks to progressive gains, especially in South Philadelphia—is alive and well.” When it came to campaigning, “Parker ran a disciplined and relatable campaign focused on experience, public safety, and improving the quality of life for working-class Philadelphians.” And her “Democratic establishment backing included the powerful local Building Trades, but also the SEIU, a union that has proved crucial to other city electoral outcomes, particularly around Pittsburgh.”

VP Harris visits union leaders in Philly

Vice President Kamala Harris was in Philly yesterday for a meeting with SEIU’s executive board. The Inquirer reports that with 2024 in sight, her visit came as the Biden administration is emphasizing its “commitment to organized labor.” VP “Harris called for legislation that would decrease childcare costs while increasing wages for childcare workers.” She also called “for proposals to improve nursing home staffing, wages, and benefits.” Reacting to the visit, a Republican National Committee spokesperson said, “Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are actively making life harder for Pennsylvanians…. The Biden-Harris agenda has abjectly failed workers with soaring inflation, lower wages, and a higher cost of living.”

House Dems pass bill requiring electronic filing of campaign finance reports

On a party-line 102-101 vote, House Democrats yesterday passed a bill that would “require candidates for a state office to file their campaign finance reports electronically, instead of on paper,” the AP reports. The measure “would also allow for remaining campaign funds to be donated to nonprofits.” The measure now heads to the Senate.

Full day of House and Senate committee hearings

From education to professional licensing to transportation and more, House and Senate committees have a full day of hearings today. Click here for the House schedule and livestream links or here for the Senate schedule and livestream links.

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