News & Brews December 20, 2023

Get News & Brews in your inbox each day: Subscribe here!

Pa. loses population, again

The Census Bureau reports that “New York and Pennsylvania were the only Northeastern states to lose population in 2023,” with Pa. losing 10,408 people. We’re one of only eight states to lose population this year—the others being California, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, New York, Oregon, and West Virginia. The decline was less than last year, however, when we lost more than 40,000 people. The Center Square has more.

Poll: Biden, Trump in ‘statistical tie’ in Pa.

Per a new Muhlenberg College poll, nearly two-thirds of Pa. voters “do not believe that Joe Biden deserves reelection for another term as President of the United States.” Yet, despite this, Biden and former President Trump “are in a statistical dead heat (Biden 42%- Trump 41%) among registered voters in the Commonwealth.” Meanwhile, Gov. Shapiro’s job approval stands at 51%. Separately, a Commonwealth Foundation poll found 71% of voters have no interest in having Shapiro unilaterally impose a new energy tax on them (referring to RGGI). About the same percent, however, (72%) weren’t familiar with RGGI.

WSJ: ‘Hope for school choice in Pa.’

The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board writes, “Vouchers haven’t made a comeback since Democratic Gov. Josh Shapiro vetoed them from the budget, despite Republican efforts this fall. But residual good news is that the state Legislature agreed to the largest-ever expansion of the state’s K-12 tax-credit scholarships programs in a budget deal last week.” This “vote indicates that Democrats know school choice is popular and the right moral and education policy. They simply lack the backbone to challenge the unions on vouchers. Republicans can eventually win on this issue if they keep highlighting parental choice against a union monopoly that keeps failing children.”

82 roll call votes in 1 day mark end of session in Harrisburg

As lawmakers wrapped up the state budget law week after a five-plus-month impasse, they saw their “busiest voting day of the year” on Wednesday. The Post-Gazette reports, “A review of session records shows the combined 82 roll call votes taken in the House and Senate were by far the highest total of the year, with 32 conducted after 7 p.m. The next-highest daily figure was 57, on June 22.” Of course, the first half of this year saw our laziest legislature in decades, and House Democrats have already called for a three-month vacation from votes, blaming a leaky roof (we have questions). So there’s that.

Op-Ed: Producing energy, protecting the environment

Gov. Josh Shapiro and CNX Resources Corporation President and CEO Nick Deiuliis have a joint op-ed at Fox News on “an historic public-private collaboration to reduce emissions and protect energy jobs by embracing radical transparency, delivering answers about natural gas production to local communities, and collecting extensive air and water quality data.”

Sign up to get News & Brews in your inbox