News & Brews August 7, 2023

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WSJ: ‘Calling Josh Shapiro’s voucher bluff’

The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board calls on Pa. Senate Republicans to use the yet-to-be-approved code bills to keep the school choice pressure on Gov. Shapiro and Democrats. This comes after Shapiro vetoed school choice last week even as some Democrats are breaking ranks and voicing support for it.

Profile: Senate President Pro Tempore Kim Ward

Amid the ongoing budget drama, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette tracks Senate President Pro Tempore Kim Ward’s path into politics and, ultimately, to the top position in the state Senate. The story notes that she’s known for her tenacity. And the Senate’s top Democrat, Sen. Jay Costa, says this of her: “She stands by what she believes in, and that is what we are seeing, right now. She is not someone who is easily swayed by public pressure

Main budget is done, but budget battle continues

Although Gov. Shapiro signed the state budget last week, a “major slice of the spending — Republicans put it at more than $1 billion — cannot happen unless other budget-related legislation is passed by a deeply divided legislature.” So reports the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, adding, “Multiple signs pointed to a continuing, heated disconnect between the parties.” The spending items in limbo without the additional legislation include funding for criminal indigent defense, “level-up” funding for the state’s poorest school districts, and funding for income-based home improvement grants.

Shapiro cuts funding for crisis pregnancy centers

On Friday, Gov. Shapiro announced that he will end funding for Real Alternatives, an organization that operates more than two dozen crisis pregnancy centers in Pa. Real Alternatives is a pro-life organization, and Shapiro is staunchly pro-abortion and has been backed by pro-abortion organizations.

A crossword puzzle for libertarians?

And just for fun, Reason has begun publishing a weekly crossword puzzle for libertarians. While not all the clues spell ‘freedom’, this one will have ”a pro-capitalism, pro–free market voice,” according to puzzle creator Stella Zawistowski. Read more here, or click here for the first puzzle.

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