4/18 Morning Buzz

Monday is the deadline to register to vote for the primary in May. Aw who are we kidding – everyone who reads the buzz is already registered to vote.

Our friends at Capitol Ideas have the behind-the-scenes story on the delay on vouchers in the State Senate, and why some rural Republicans are worried about taking a very tough vote.

In case you missed it, we took a look at how the statewide GOP candidates did at last weekend’s PA Leadership conference of conservative activists.

Our April Fools coverage picked up another real link in the press, this time in MSNBC (h/t Montco PA Dem for the catch).

Senator Casey had quite a week, and it continued into Friday. First, word broke of his $1.1 fundraising quarter. Then he began to take heat over his vote not to defund Planned Parenthood. And if that wasn’t eventful enough, a Friday poll showed him with tepid approval numbers, but standing head and shoulders in all hypothetical matchups.

In other news, Friday was tax day and Tea Party groups around the state held rallies for the occasion. It looks like the Pittsburgh group won the day.

And in the most charming feature from last week, PA Public Radio’s Scott Detrow reports on a Q&A between Governor Corbett and some spirited middle schoolers.

Good morning politicos, and welcome to the buzz.

PoliticsPA Reports

Public Policy Polling: Sen. Casey Has Weak Approval Numbers But Holds Large Leads
Is Bob Casey vulnerable for reelection? Our newest Pennsylvania poll provides data you can use to argue it either way. On one hand he has weak approval numbers- only 39% of voters approve of the job he’s doing to 35% who disapprove- you can certainly get defeated with those kinds of numbers. On the other hand he leads seven potential opponents for next year that we tested against him by anywhere from 12 to 23 points- you’ll pretty much never get defeated with those kinds of numbers.

How Statewide GOP Candidates Did At PLC (w/ Video)
We wanted to bring you this bit of followup about the folks who have to walk that line between Tea Party and GOP. Here’s how the statewide candidates did at PLC.

Santorum Wins National Home Schoolers Straw Poll
Christian Home Educators Association of California and the Home School Legal Defense Association hosted the first annual Pacific Home School Super Conference last week. The conference brought over 1,200 home schoolers to participate in activities that included the Presidential Forum and the straw poll. Rick Santorum swept the poll receiving a total of 28% of the vote.

Pennsylvania Ave.: Sen. Casey Slammed By Pro-Life Groups After Planned Parenthood vote
Senator Bob Casey voted Thursday to keep federal funding of Planned Parenthood intact. Casey, who is pro-life, quickly became the target of pro-life groups angry about his vote according to the Pennsylvania Avenue blog.

Sen. Toomey Takes the Lead in Senate GOP Budget
Freshman GOP Senator Pat Toomey is preparing an ambitious budget plan that would balance the budget more than twice as fast as the plan recently released by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI).

DCCC Hits Fitzpatrick on Day 100… Plus 1
The DCCC had to wait one extra day to celebrate Rep. Fitzpatrick’s 100th day. They took the opportunity to remind the press about his embarrassing ‘oathgate’ scandal.

Headlines
Early Returns: FEC Wrapup; Murphy Up Big
Washington Post: Fundraising by GOP House Freshman Off to Slow Start (except Rep. Meehan)
Post-Gazette: Sen. Casey’s family-planning vote brings anti-abortion anger
Centre Daily Times: Sen. Toomey Talks Up Balanced Budget At Penn State
Pennsylvania Ave.: Tough week of votes for congressional lawmakers as they head on 2-week recess
Montco PA Dem: MSNBC reports PoliticsPA April Fools story (re: Sestak running for everything) as fact
ThinkProgress: Santorum slogan echoes pro-union Langston Hughes poem
Inquirer: Joe Torsella Confirmed As An Ambassador to The UN
Times-Leader: Rep. Barletta Discusses Different Figures in Campaign Funds Report
Politico: Corey O’Brien’s path blocked by redistricting
Early Returns: Decent Crowd For Pgh Tea Party Rally
Tribune Democrat: Redistricting Looming, Johnstown needs a local Rep
AP: Lehigh University Graduate Student Heads to Libya To Fight
State House Sound Bites: Corbett on sprinkler bill
WHYY Newsworks: Former adultBasic Enrollees Notified of Medicaid Options
Morning Call: Vouchers Bill Hits Snag in the State Senate
State House Sound Bites: Corbett Quizzed by Middle-Schoolers
AP: A Call To Revamp Pa. Recycling
AP: Pa. Senate Committee Votes To Outlaw Pigeon Shoots
Patriot-News: Pa. Democrats Doubt Liquor Stores Will Be Sold To Private Sector
Valley News Dispatch: Penn State Offers Neutral View on Marcellus Shale Drilling
Daily News: Nutter Works to Build A Team For 2nd Term
Heard in the Hall: Street to Nutter: Street to Nutter: Take a stand on Ackerman
Daily News: Council President Hopefuls Working Behind the Scenes
Inquirer: Nutter Hoping To Mold Council
Inquirer: Why Phillies Fans Should Thank John Street
Times Leader: Casey camp upbeat about re-election
PhillyClout: Jonathan Saidel To Endorse Henon In 6th City Council District
Post-Gazette: Pittsburgh to merge city and county financial systems
Citizens’ Voice: Drilling companies sponsor conference
Post-Gazette: What fines reveal about state drilling
Post-Gazette: Marcellus forum set for Friday at Slippery Rock
Post-Gazette: House Bill on student testing reopens familiar debate
New York Times: Chemicals were injected into wells, Report Says
Post-Gazette: Flaherty seeks executive position
Post-Gazette: Former casino CEO suing Gaming Board
PhillyClout: Why is challenger wrong on size of Marge’s DROP payment
Inquirer: A look at who’s getting a free pass from mayor
Tribune-Review: Higher ed hiring up, but fund cuts loom
Times-Leader: Chance to meet the candidates
Patriot-News: Authorities Investigate Cause of Fire At Lebanon County Commissioner’s Office, Building

Opinions
Early Returns: Analysis of the historic announcement of the merging of Pittsburgh’s City and County financial management systems
Karen Heller, Inquirer: Santorum is death wish for GOP in 2012
Times-Tribune: ‘Sexting’ Bill Addresses the Right Issues
CBS Pittsburgh: Should Pa. Sell State Stores?
Citizens’ Voice: Strengthen drilling regulatory regime
Patriot-News Editorial: Mayor Thompson: sounds of silence
Standard Speaker: Recidivism costly for Pennsylvania
Patriot-News Commentary: Gov. Corbett Misses Opportunity To Chip Away Education’s Fortress
Jeanette Krebs, Patriot News: A line can take funny twists in redistricting
Patriot-News Op-ed: There aren’t enough cookies in Pennsylvania to save education

April 18th, 2011 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Playbook | No Comments