5/3 Morning Buzz
Updated: Romney & Santorum to Meet in Pittsburgh Friday: Newt Gingrich is out of the race, and GOP eyes are set on the fall. A big step toward Republican unity will reportedly happen Friday, when former contender Rick Santorum and presumptive nominee Mitt Romney meet in Pittsburgh. Update: He’s having a public event, too, at a nearby company.
Lawmakers Rail Against Proposed Maps: The panel charged with redrawing Pennsylvania’s state House and Senate maps heard an earful on Wednesday, as lawmakers and citizens alternatively nit-picked individual districts and blasted the entire map proposal.
Obama Camp Highlights Corbett Ultrasound Redux (Watch Video): Governor Tom Corbett recently spoke about his now-infamous remarks regarding the proposed ultrasound mandate. President Barack Obama’s campaign and the PA Democrats jumped all over it.
Maggi Accuses Murphy of Ethics Violations; Murphy Fires Back: Democrat Larry Maggi put Rep. Tim Murphy (R-Allegheny) on notice today, attacking him for ethics violations including taxpayer funding of campaign fliers. But the Murphy campaign responded, saying Maggi consistently takes pay raises and has made questionable campaign expenditures.
After Primary, PA Senate Race Stays Put at 18th of 20: Republicans nominated former coal company owner Tom Smith on Tuesday, but the self-funder’s name on the ballot didn’t inch PA up on the National Journal’s competitiveness scale compared to other races in the country.
Legislative Election Updates
SD-37: Pretty much everyone thinks the proposed redraw for the Pippy seat should be re-jiggered to include the home of Raja, the GOP candidate for the seat. Sen. Joe Scarnati, Rep. John Maher, Allegheny GOP Chair Jim Roddey and even Sen. Daylin Leach said as much at yesterday’s LRC hearing. Leach added that Dem Rob Teplitz, who’s in a nearly identical situation in SD-15, should get the same treatment.
SD-47: Sen. Elder Vogel’s Democratic opponent Kim Villella, one of the Senate Dems; top 2012 recruits, testified in Harrisburg Wednesday against a remap proposal that would shave Dem areas out of the district and add heavily Republican Cranberry Township in Butler County. The map wouldn’t take effect until after the Vogel-Villella matchup this fall.
HD-22: Erin Molchany pulled an upset when she became the general election nominee in Chelsa Wagner’s old seat. Her problem? The district is slated to be yanked and moved to Allentown. She asked the LRC to reconsider.
HD-89: Earlier this week, we noted that Rep. Rob Kauffman (R-Franklin) had brushed aside a debate challenge from Dem Susan Spicka. (“Bawk bawk” were our words). The Chambersburg Public Opinion agreed, and called Kauffman out in an editorial.
HD-112: Kevin Haggerty beat Rep. Ken Smith (D-Lackawanna) last week, but he won’t technically skate through the general. Republican Ray Nearhood made the ballot by write-in. Writes NEPArtisan: “He is a Tea Party-ish libertarian who, much like Ron Swanson from Parks & Rec, likely wants to get into government solely to destroy it.”
HD-165: The Springfield Twp Dems celebrated Jeremy Fearn getting on the ballot against Rep. Bill Adolph (R-Delaware). “A successful write-in during a Primary Election is not an easy task,” said Chair Raymond Santarelli. “This write-in was no exception, and the light voter turn out made it that much harder.”
AP: Newt Gingrich to end his presidential campaign
Pennsylvania Ave: Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney meet Friday in Pittsburgh
Politico: Third-party candidate for POTUS: Anyone? Walker?
Politico: Newt Gingrich drops out: ‘Truly wild ride’ is over
Politico: Obama: ‘Light of a new day’ in Afghanistan
Politico: Obama widens lead over Romney in Wisconsin, poll suggests
Roll Call: Democrats laying groundwork for student loan fight
National Journal: While Obama dominates foreign policy, Romney sticks to economy
National Journal: As Gingrich exits, GOP unity still elusive for Romney
National Journal: Obama campaign complies Newt’s greatest hits on Romney
National Journal Hotline: Warren plays the Obama card
Five Thirty Eight: Is Obama more popular than he should be?
Washington Post: Romney campaign’s misleading stats: women in the Obama economy
Washington Post: The end for Newt Gingrich or just another new beginning?
The Hill: Obama asks voters to look back
The Hill: Bachmann set to endorse Romney
The Caucus: Pro-Romney ‘Super PAC’ begins $4 million ad buy
The Caucus: Afghan agreement treads familiar ground
New York Times: Obama and Romney vie for Mayor Bloomberg’s endorsement
Fox News: Three categories for candidates for Romney’s running mate
State House Sound Bites: State year-to-date deficit shrinks, administration “cautiously optimistic”
State House Sound Bites: Legislative audit reveals more than $120 million dollar surplus
PA Independent: PA looks at 401(k) style plans to curb pension crisis
StateImpact PA: “Falling natural gas prices hit states’ pocketbooks”
StateImpact PA: Industry coalition releases new drilling standards
StateImpact PA: Fractivists to rally in DC against drilling
StateImpact PA: Democratic house leaders push to revise gas drilling law
StateImpact PA: Drill Bits: Chesapeake clips McClendon’s wings, frack fluid migration, and mining patient data
Washington Times: The hunt is on for Blue Democrats
Inquirer: Philadelphia school official says that without more cash, classrooms might not open in the fall
Inquirer: Romney raise up to $1.5 million in Montco
Inquirer: Bucks County woman sticks to her fight against voter-ID law
Daily News: Ronnie gets tweet apology from Nutter
PhillyClout: DA to City Council: Watch ‘Law and Order’
PhillyClout: Council not ready to sign off on AVI, additional schools funding
PhillyClout: Mayoral spokesman takes media to task via Twitter
Phillynow.com: Obama camp slams Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett
Beaver County Times: Feds want to nix Geneva College lawsuit
Beaver County Times: Pa. redistricting panel hears from critics
Observer-Reporter: Pa. House passes bill to end property tax on primary homes
Observer-Reporter: Senate Democrats hear about proposed cuts to horse racing fund
Observer-Reporter: Dems aim to change Act 13
Valley News Dispatch: Scarnati opposes moving North Hills District in reapportionment
Observer-Reporter: Pa. House passes bill to end property tax on primary homes
Altoona Mirror: Possible drilling raises concern
Altoona Mirror: Voter ID law challenged
Express Times: Lafayette College scholars prepare for Vice President Joe Biden’s visit
Express Times: Joe Biden reviews ancestors’ documents in tour of Kirby Hall at Lafayette College
Express Times: Allentown City Council appoints Joseph John Davis to vacant seat
Express Times: Lafayette grad is Vice President Joe Biden’s deputy chief of staff
Reading Eagle: Oley looks to spend reserves to fill budget deficit
Morning Call: Bethlehem OK’s more street work
Morning Call: Rep. Dent follows GOP line
Carlisle Sentinel: Pa. Redistricting panel hears from critics
York Daily Record: County woman appointed to state Commission for Women
Lancaster Intelligencier: Legislative boost for open campus
The Times Leader: Mullery and others chide proposed legislative maps
The Times Leader: Roseanne may be nominated for president
Times-Tribune: Lawsuit states Voter ID law is ticket to disenfranchisement
Times-Tribune: Lawmakers, activists tangle over surplus use
Standard Speaker: School board breaks down budget deficit
North by Northwest
Erie Times-News: Erie school board votes to close three schools
Erie Times-News: Kelly endorsed by U.S. business group
Courier Express: Voter ID rules went well in Clarion County
Centre Daily Times: Challenge to takeover Pa. capital thrown out
Daily News: Air apparent: Plane truth about presidential travel
Daily News: New casino a bad bet?
Philly.com: More than just a bucket of spit
Inquirer: Pa. puppy mills up to old tricks
Times-Tribune: Op/Ed: Close loophole before cutting CNI tax rate
Citizens Voice: Op/Ed: It’s better to be lucky and good
The Daily Review: Op/Ed: Staff members must be able to do their jobs
The Daily Review: Op/Ed: Ensure timely and reliable reporting
The Daily Review: Op/Ed: Sweet deals at taxpayers’ expense
Post-Gazette: Seeking real Dems
Keystone Liberty: Property tax independence for Pennsylvania
Young Philly Politics: Set off without a paddle: Unpacking the schools districts disaster capitalism
Young Philly Politics: Want to understand just how horrible the voter ID law is?
Commonwealth Foundation: Good April tax collections, but state is spending more than revenue
Commonwealth Foundation: The Patriot can do better than this
Commonwealth Foundation: Fighting fraud is the beginning of true welfare reform
NEPArtisan : HD-112: Nearhood makes ballot, faces Haggerty in fall
NEPArtisan: A surplus is better with program cuts
Keystone Progress: PA Alliance for Retired Americans launches 2012 political education program
Keystone Politics: HB 2150: Why on earth is anyone talking about cutting taxes
Keystone Politics: Corbett doubles down on forced ultrasounds: “You can’t make them watch it”
Keystone Politics: Corporate taxes vs. cutting public services
Keystone Politics: What Philly Fed Prez Charles Plosser should be doing