News & Brews March 12, 2024

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The ‘politics of crime’ in Pa.’s attorney general race

WESA dives into the “politics of crime” in the five-way Democrat primary race for state attorney general. While a few years ago, criminal justice reform was “an issue that united Democrats,” these days, the candidates “are playing down the topic.” In recent elections, “Democrats have been on the defensive” when it comes to crime. And “[n]one of the five Democrats in this race could say whether Pennsylvania’s Democratic voters care more about increasing safety or reducing the prison population right now.”

Biden campaign launches new ad in Pa. as part of $30-million, swing-state buy

The Delaware Valley Journal reports that the Biden campaign has released a new campaign ad as part of a $30-million ad buy targeting swing states, including Pennsylvania. Instead of running from the topic of President Biden’s age, the ad tackles it head-on, using it to highlight accomplishments (or supposed ones) that the president is running on. The DVJ notes, “The six-week ad run will air on national and local broadcast and cable television in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, and North Carolina.”

Who’s running for Pa. auditor general? 

Spotlight PA profiles the three candidates running for Pennsylvania Auditor General: Republican incumbent AG Tim DeFoor (whom we supported) and Democrats Mark Pinsley and state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta. The latter two will face off in the Democratic primary on April 23.

Report: State of union membership in state government

A new report from the Commonwealth Foundation finds that 34% of public workers in Pennsylvania pay union dues, making Pennsylvania among the more ‘union dense’ states among those studied when it comes to government workers. Per CF Senior Fellow for Labor Policy David Osborne, the report’s co-author, “Some state capitals are even more beholden to public-sector union executives than we thought. Unfortunately, these union executives use their power in state government to increase their own political celebrity at the expense of taxpayers and sometimes workers themselves,” the Center Square reports.

The Republican whom Democrats love

PennLive reports, “A former Dauphin County Democrat state House candidate claims a top Democrat urged her not to challenge the Republican incumbent because he is a ‘good guy and works across the aisle.’” The potential Democrat challenger, Anju Singh, says she felt pressured by House Democrat Leader Matt Bradford not to challenge Republican incumbent state Rep. Tom Mehaffie, who often votes with Democrats (and unions). The story goes on to say, “Bradford acknowledged he visited Singh as he said he often does with his party’s candidates. He said he advised her that she would be facing some strong headwinds but to say he tried to dissuade her from running would be an unfair assessment.” Mehaffie, as we’ve previously pointed out, is the Republican who gave Dems the House majority last year and blocked voter ID. It’s little wonder if Democrats would want to keep him.

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