2/13 Morning Buzz

Good morning politicos, and welcome to the Buzz.

Allegheny Dems Endorse AltmireJason Altmire easily secured the endorsement of the Allegheny County Dems Sunday afternoon, overtaking primary opponent Mark Critz 122-63.

It follows this — Rep. Critz Throws First Punch In Fundraising E-mail: Rep. Mark Critz criticized Rep. Jason Altmire in a fundraising e-mail Friday by saying that Rep. Altmire is too conservative to represent the district.

Kane & Murphy Debate at Progressive Summit: Records were challenged, laws were interpreted and progressive values abounded Friday night, as Attorney General candidates Patrick Murphy and Kathleen Kane faced-off in a lively debate.

We’ll have more reports from the Summit later today.

2/10 Ups & Downs: Some congressional races heat up; action in Harrisburg; and a solution in sight for redistricting? Here are this week’s Ups & Downs.

Legislative Election Updates:

SD-37: The Allegheny Dems endorsed Grant Parks as their candidate for the seat of outgoing Senator John Pippy.

HD-3: Democrat Ryan Bizzarro, 26, is running for the eat of outgoing Rep. John Hornaman. The buzz is that he has Hornaman’s blessing.

HD-20: The Allegheny Dems endorsed incumbent Rep. Adam Ravenstahl over challenger Mark Purcell.

HD-22: In the crowded race to replace now-Allegheny County Controller Chelsa Wagner (where the primary is the election), the Dems endorsed Martin Schmotzer over Rob Frank and Shawn Lunny. This one is a real mess, as it might be moved across Pa depending on the outcome of redistricting.

HD-24: The Allegheny County Dems endorsed challenger Ed Gainey over incumbent Rep. Joe Preston.

HD-39: The Allegheny Dems declined to make an endorsement in the three-man field of former State Representative David Levdansky faced off against Dan Connelly and Rob Rhoderick. They’re hoping to unseat freshman Rep. Rick Saccone, who will be one of the most vulnerable Republicans in the state if the 2001 lines stay in place.

HD-44: With incumbent Rep. Mark Mustio (R ) the front runner to replace Pippy, this will be an open seat. The Allegheny Dems endorsed Mark Scappe.

HD-134: Correction – Republican Rob Hamill is seeking Dough Reichley’s seat in the special election. He says if he is not selected by the party for that (likely set for primary day), he would not run for the general in November.

Have a tip or update about a state House or Senate race? Email press@politicspa.com.

National:
AP: Top Republican wants vote on birth control mandate
AP: Analysis: Obama pitches middle while GOP eyes base
Early Returns: Romney defends record at CPAC
Early Returns: Obama camp files for PA ballot
Slate: Romney wins straw poll at less circus-y CPAC
USA Today: Romeny wins Maine caucuses
USA Today: Santorum plans aggressive strategy for Michigan primary
USA Today Santorum raises $3 million in three days
USA Today: Obama tweaks birth control rule
USA Today Gingrich aims at GOP establishment
USA Today: Santorum clarifies remarks on women in combat
The Caucus: Appealing to activists, Romney calls himself “severely conservative”
The Hill: Santorum suggests Romney rigged CPAC straw poll victory
Real Clear Politics: Pennsylvania still a tall order for Obama
Washington Post: Obama’s 2012 budget proposal launches election-year debate
Politico: Santorum takes national lead over Romney
Pennsylvania Ave: Casey speaks out, sort of, on Obama contraception reversal
Inquirer: In a divided GOP, Romney has a good day
Inquirer: Romney, Santorum in dead heat in Pa.
Patriot-News: Pennsylvania Army National Guard Troops Come Home
WHYY Newsworks: On the right, ‘elitism’ is about brains, not bucks
Delco Times: Obama urges extension of payroll tax cut
San Antonio Express-News: Texas’ role in GOP nomination remains up in the air
Political News: Leahy, Casey urge Senate leaders to push for conference committee on STOCK Act

Statewide:
Capitol Ideas: Corbett: Penn State funding not tied to open records compliance, but “we need to have that discussion”
State House Sound Bites: Federal ruling against banning 2001 lines prolongs waiting game for new-district candidates
Patriot-News: Ex-State Rep. Feese Will Appeal Computergate Convictions
State House Sound Bites: Links: Feese sentencing, thinning state prisons, and foreclosure money
PA Independent: PA primary date depends on which path lawmakers take
PA Independent: Week in review: Corbett budget proposal PA highlight
Capitolwire: Reapportionment commission staff says next plan faces 60 days of comments, appeals
Capitolwire: OFF THE FLOOR: The Bob Marley song Gov. Corbett should cover to explain school funding
Capitolwire: Corbett says “we reduced education funding if you look at it as a whole”
Capitolwire: Corbett budget funds new drug and alcohol department, but cuts other treatment funds
AP: Lessons of Pa. corruption probe may be short-lived
KYW News: Pennsylvania officials want to streamline Parole process for prison inmates
KYW News: Interview with Steve Welch
Patriot-News: Are Pennsylvania’s Child-Abuse Laws Failing Children?
Patriot-News: Pennsylvania State Government Supervisors, Managers, Will Get Raise In New Budget
Patriot-News: Pennsylvania Game Commission Hopes Bald Eagles Return To Nesting Platform on Haldeman Island
WHYY Newsworks: Pa. GOP lawmakers seek power to review projects
WHYY Newsworks: Pa. school officials try to assess impact of Corbett budget plan
City Paper: Outrage as shale gas drilling bill moves to the governor’s desk
Post-Gazette: Shale driller Chesapeake Appalachia is fined by state DEP for major violations
Early Returns: Welch: $1M in cash for GOP Senate run
Early Returns: Obama camp files for PA ballot
Early Returns: Critz: I’ll never go on Fox News
Beaver County Times: How will candidates be affected by the state’s decision to return to 2001 district lines?
AP: PA to get $266M from foreclosure settlement
Post-Gazette: Bonusgate timeline
Post-Gazette: Feese gets 4-12 years in corruption case
Observer-Reporter: Awaiting sentencing, DeWeese says he’ll seek re-election
Indiana Gazette: Senate OKs White’s ID Bill
AP: Viewing Harrisburg: Lessons of corruption probe may be short-lived
Altoona Mirror: Ceasing stimulus creates gap in education funding

Philadelphia:
Tribune-Review: Car sales background helps congressional newbie gain prominence
Inquirer: Casey urges hearings on Philadelphia area refinery closings

SEPA:
Daily News: Area votes in Congress
ABC Philadelphia: Chester Mayor’s mission is to restore law, order
Delco Times: Meehan gets emotional over veteran treatment
Montgomery Media Reapportionment disputes cause primary election confusion
Montgomery Media: DeLisso votes no on Marcellus shale bill
Bucks Local News: Bucks County Democrats endorse Kathy Boockvar for U.S. Congress in the 8th district
Bucks Local News: Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick delivers ‘ State of the Union’ address before Central Bucks Chamber
The Reporter: Montgomery Township resident to challenge Stephen in state House

Pittsburgh:
Tribune-Review: Parents, students gather in Oakland to protest education cuts
Tribune-Review: County controller Chelsa Wagner gives birth to a son
Tribune-Review: Firefighters learn to deal with emergencies at gas drilling sites
Tribune-Review: Union residents welcome Southwest Regional police
Tribune-Review: Allegheny County democrats to endorse legislative hopefuls
KDKA: Bishop Zubik critical of Obama’s birth control compromise

Southwest:
AP: Drillers cut natural gas production as prices drop
Observer-Reporter: DeWeese conviction complicates primary
Observer-Reporter: Columbia gas announces $2.5M pipeline project
Altoona Mirror: Services to help victims of juvenile crime on governor’s budget chopping block
AP: Western PA plant to close, idling about 110
WJAC: Johnstown firefighter union wants federal grant
Tribune Democrat: GOP Entry in 12th – Lawyer to target Critz or Altmire
Tribune Democrat: Commissioners to appoint three to arena board
WTAE: Drilling waste water dumped in creeks
Daily Courier: Proposed PA budget raises more concerns

South Central:
Patriot-News: Swatara Township, Dauphin County Team Up To Replace Flood-Damaged Bridge
The York Daily Record: Court’s redistricting decision gives politicians a plan. Or does it?
Lebanon Daily News: Holden holds on, reaches out

Lehigh Valley:
Express Times: Hunterdon County workers protest proposed layoffs
Reading Eagle: Corbetts’s budget to have far reaching impact
Reading Eagle: Gerlach sets priorities for re-election bid
Reading Eagle: John Forester: Corbett rebounds from critics
Morning Call: Pennridge School District proposes redistricting to ease overcrowding
Morning Call: DiGiacinto won’t run run for Bethlehem City Controller

NEPA:
The Times Leader: Balancing the budget: Could salaries be cut?
The Times Leader: Senior citizens returning to the workforce on the rise
The Times Leader: Council boss Bobeck cuts own pay as example for county
The Times Leader: Leighton downplays W-B debt of $100M
The Times Leader: Jenkins OKs new cruiser for police
The Times Leader: Kingston Township plan gets an update
Times Tribune: Five Carbondale school board directors face private charges from ex-director
Times Tribune: As roads and bridges deteriorate, governors still silent on paying for fixes
Times Tribune: City officials detail how Scranton spent found millions
Citizen’s Voice: Detectives among county’s top paid employees
Wayne Independent: Week in review: Contraception spat ends with compromise
Go Lackawanna: Koh: Reform creating ‘public health history’
Go Lackawanna: City denied appeal

North by Northwest:
Erie Times-News: Bizzarro running for state House in 3rd district
Courier Express: DEP slaps Chesapeake with $500,000 in fines
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Feese gets 2-to-4 years
Williamsport Sun Gazette: Public safety agency staff must act fast
The Reporter: Redistricting challenges forcing one legislator to scramble for signatures

Opinion:
State Rep. Saccone, Patriot-News Op-Ed: Government Is Filled With God’s Word
Jaime Mondics, Keystone Progress, Patriot-News Op-Ed: Women Lose When Religious Groups Attack Health Rights
Inquirer: Must a bridge fall down?
Tribune-Review: Eggs Specter: An illegal grant
Patriot-News Editorial: Health Care Access: Religious Freedom Is Not The Issue Here
The Times Leader: Opinion: State convention our best hope
Patriot-News Op-Ed: What’s A Republican Voter To Do?
Patriot-News Column: The Case For Renaming Beaver Stadium
The Times Leader: Opinion: W-B Area wrong to gag public’s say
Times Tribune: Editorial: Yet another layer of local government
Times Tribune: Editorial: Stop shilling for gun lobby
Times Tribune: Editorial: Line-item veto wastes power
Times Tribune: Opinion: Kelly: Can Pennsylvanians survive under another year of Corbett’s ax?
Citizen’s Voice: Opinion: Lawmakers must focus on public safety
Citizen’s Voice: Opinion: Seek alternative prison sentencing
Standard Speaker: Opinion: It doesn’t take an expert to draw an honest map
Erie Times-News Editorial: State budget might be too painful
WHYY Newsworks: Dems just need a raison d’etre!
Patriot-News Editorial: Our Skies Just Got A Lot More Friendly
Pottstown Mercury: Pa. Legislature stays busy by passing resolutions
Courier Times: State needs to fix bad highway legislation
Delco Times: Corbett proposes catastrophic higher ed cuts
Daily Local: What happened to Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney
Altoona Mirror: State capital improvement fundings needs thorough exam
Citizens’ Voice: Budget cuts taking a toll

Blogs:
Commonwealth Foundation: Government union jeopardizes criminal justice reform
Speaking Freely (ACLU-PA): Voter ID is not about the majority
Lehigh Valley Ramblings: Moravian Village expansion at Stefko approved
Lehigh Valley Ramblings: More bad census news for Gracedale
Lehigh Valley Ramblings: Was Jude Koury wrong to be concerned about online threat?
Lehigh Valley Independent: Political subdivisions will not receive windfall from reassessment
Lehigh Valley Independent: Who gets the most government transfers in PA?
Lehigh Valley Independent: The politics of reassessment
NEPArtisan: Sen. Casey on wrong side of an issue again
2 Political Junkies: More on Santorum’s Hanukkuh card
Lu-Lac Political Letter: The Santorum factor
Pennsylvania Progressive: Pennsylvania Progressive summit 2012
Pennsylvania Progressive: Pa. Marcellus Shale fee among lowest in the nation
Above Average Jane: President Obama on women’s preventive services and religious institutions
Keystone Politics: Casey leading charge against Syrian regime
Citizens’ Call: Public hearing Wednesday night on age-restricted zoning district
North Pittsburgh Politics: Allegheny County Democratic Endorsements

February 13th, 2012 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Playbook, Top Stories | No Comments