News & Brews October 16, 2023

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Shapiro’s office ‘quietly settled’ sexual harassment allegation against Mike Vereb

Spotlight PA reports that “Gov. Josh Shapiro’s office quietly entered into a settlement agreement to resolve allegations of sexual harassment against one of his most trusted senior aides weeks before the staffer resigned.”  However, “The settlement contains a clause that bars both sides from discussing the allegations, according to two sources familiar with the agreement.” The amount of the settlement remains unknown at the moment, and in the past, taxpayer dollars have been used to pay such settlements, raising concerns and objections.

Pa. 2024 primary date probably won’t change

Our April 23, 2024 primary election date will likely stay as it is after the House and Senate deadlocked over what the new date should be. Spotlight PA reports, “In separate statements Thursday, state Senate leadership said the matter was ‘closed’ and state House leadership called it ‘unresolvable.’” The current date conflicts with Passover. The Senate wanted to move the date to March 19, while the House voted to move it to April 2. County elections administrators had recently said it was too late to move the date given logistical requirements for elections.

Biden visits Philly for 8th time this year 

In his 8th visit to Philadelphia this year, on Friday President Biden announced $750 million in funding to bring a hydrogen hub to the region. The funding drew praise from the usual suspects of those who love when government picks winners and losers. But as Americans for Prosperity Pennsylvania Director Ashley Klingensmith noted, “These clean hydrogen hubs, just like the innovation hubs the president was promoting over the summer, are simply more of the command-and-control central planning that we’ve come to expect from President Biden. He’s spending billions of taxpayer dollars to subsidize his administration’s preferred energy sectors while strangling others. It’s also suspect that he’s awarding these taxpayer-funded grants in states critical to his reelection….”

Allegheny exec candidates face off in final debate

Democrat Sara Innamorato and Republican Joe Rockey met in their third and final debate as they run for Allegheny County executive. WESA reports that during the debate, which aired yesterday, the candidates “revisited top issues from past debates, while each sought to link the other to broader ideological movements.” How close the election will be has been a point of debate, with some projecting it will be closer than originally thought.

UPenn facing backlash for handling of antisemitism

Apollo Global Management CEO Marc Rowan, a Wharton alum who gave $50 million to Wharton School at UPenn in 2018, is calling on the university’s leaders to resign due to their response to antisemitism on campus. The Inquirer reported that Rowan was one of 4,000 alum to send an open letter “challenging Penn’s handling of the Palestine Writes literature festival.” They wrote, “The fact that University of Pennsylvania academic departments are co-sponsoring the festival and its platforming of outright antisemitism without denunciation from the university is unacceptable.” Rowan is also asking other alumni and supporters to “close their checkbooks” until UPenn’s President and Chairman both step down. Major Penn donor Jon Huntsman also announced his family foundation would end its giving. Facing the backlash, the university issued a statement saying it “should have moved faster” in opposing antisemitism.

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