Corbett-Castor Sniping: A Reader

Corbett KDKAIt started when KDKA’s Jon Delano asked Gov. Tom Corbett about Montgomery County Commissioner Bruce Castor and the threat of a primary challenge.

“Bruce Castor was a majority commissioner in Montgomery County,” Corbett replied. “And he’s now a minority commissioner in Montgomery County. His performance has not been the most to talk about.”

“He’s always wanted my job,” said Corbett of the 2004 Attorney General primary.

“The really funny part was, it was on Pittsburgh TV, where no one – until then, anyway – knew me,” Castor wrote in an email to the Philadelphia Daily News.

Meanwhile, Castor spokesman Joe Sterns emailed reporters to crow about the results of a survey from Harper Polling. It showed Corbett ahead of Castor 49% to 21% – a net gain of 12 points for the Montco Commish from a PPP poll in January that showed him behind 51% to 11%.

“Republicans are growing less and less comfortable with the thought of making Tom Corbett our nominee rather than a credible, articulate conservative who has a shot at defeating a tough Democrat,” Sterns wrote.

Medicaid

As a backdrop to the campaign, the looming question of whether Pa. should expand Medicaid through Obamacare. Corbett has said no on the grounds that it would cost the state too much in the long run. But he’s left the door open for reconsideration.

To wit: his recent appearance on Fox News Business. The video, below, comes courtesy of Americans for Prosperity – a conservative group that loudly opposes the expansion.

“We can’t recommend it to the legislature at this time,” Corbett said. “As we look at it, an expansion is not sustainable in Pennsylvania.”

He said PA’s per capita cost of Medicaid is the second highest in the nation, meaning a one-size fits all model from the federal government is not feasible – not to mention the feds’ habit of promising funding one year and cutting it down the line.

Asked directly if he could reconsider, he said, “I can’t recommend it right now on the facts that I have right now. If the facts substantially change then I would have to reconsider where we are.”

Castor emailed friends and reporters a link to this analysis from the conservative Watchdog Wire, in which writer Jana Benscoter compares a hypothetical Corbett Medicaid flip to Arlen Specter’s decision to support the stimulus. Castor spokesman Sterns is interviewed in the piece and supports the comparison. The late Senator’s vote for the Democrats’ stimulus package led to a collapse in his support among Republicans and ultimately precipitated his party switch.

Here’s the Fox Business interview:

A Little Psychoanalysis

What motivates Castor? To editorialize a bit: messing with Corbett. The two have long been antagonistic and Castor is not a man to forget a slight.

Would he be interested in running against an incumbent Governor with an identical record, but who was not Tom Corbett – the man who beat him in the 2004 AG primary after the PAGOP establishment turned on Castor? Probably not.

Republicans went from the majority to the minority on the Montco Board of Commissioners in 2011. Democrats ran their campaign, in part, on Castor’s combative personality.

If Corbett’s poll numbers rebound in a year and Castor decides to take a pass, he’ll probably be content with the knowledge that he gave the Governor heartburn for several months.

March 8th, 2013 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Governor, Top Stories, Video | 13 Comments

13 thoughts on “Corbett-Castor Sniping: A Reader”

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  6. Tom says:

    Tom Corbett has no regard for the most at risk P.A residents, Children , Older residents and the disabled.
    Tom Corbett took the tobacco settlement money away from adult basic and kicked 47,000 people off of adult health care, keep in mind Tom must have known that many of these people would be prevented from getting life saving treatments like Chemo for Cancer. My question is shouldn’t the Gov want the best for the least among us, that is what Jesus would do,I know that Gov Corbett is Catholic perhaps he should speak with his priest regarding playing god and deciding who should live and who should die in this state!!

    I hope that the next GOV cares more about the people and Jobs and Less about towing the GOP Line

  7. Tom says:

    Tom Corbett has no regard for the most at risk P.A residents, Children , Older residents and the disabled.
    Tom Corbett took the tobacco settlement money away from adult basic and kicked 47,000 people off of adult health care, keep in mind Tom must have known that many of these people would be prevented from getting life saving treatments like Chemo for Cancer. My question is shouldn’t the Gov want the best for the least among us, that is what Jesus would do,I know that Gov Corbett is Catholic perhaps he should speak with his priest regarding playing god and deciding who should live and who should die in this state!!

  8. BINGO says:

    t Beat Up a Guy who asked Corbett a Challenging Question in Corbetts first run for Governor Mr Corbett is a Very Bad Man Little Boys were Molested By Sandusky thanks to Corbett Dragging his feet so as not to alienate the Penn State Vote when Corbett was running for Governor Corbett should be in Jail with Sandusky for what he did to delay Sandusky’s Arrest

  9. BINGO says:

    Corbett almost Beat Up a Guy who asked Corbett a Challenging Question in Corbetts first run for Governor Mr Corbett is a Very Bad Man Little Boys were Molested By Sandusky thanks to Corbett Dragging his feet so as not to alienate the Penn State Vote when Corbett was running for Governor Corbett should be in Jail with Sandusky for what he did to delay Sandusky’s Arrest

  10. bobguzzardi says:

    The Republican Primary voter is noticing that Governor Corbett is not producing any meaningful legislation they want. The Unions are doing better.

    It is expected that liquor privatization will degenerate into liquor modernization.

    Pension Reform is, effectively. blocked.

    United Commercial and Food Workers Union workers at state store got a 4 year contract with 4% increase. http://paindependent.com/2012/08/pa-liquor-store-clerk-union-contract-official-despite-looming-privatization-efforts/

    State System of Higher Education gets huge increase “The contract, which covers 5,500 faculty members, provides for salary increases of 11.5 percent or 19 percent over its four-year life, with junior faculty getting the higher increases. Faculty now receives salaries ranging between $44,795 and $107,870 a year.” and an hourly rate that would impress a Wall Street CEO http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2013/03/state_university_faculty_overw.html

    Voter ID is still stalled because of inept execution by Secretary of State and Corbett Crony Carole Aichele. Can anyone be this inept or is it intentional slow rolling of real voter reform? like the Sandusky investigation. Corbett has both ways saying he passed Voter ID and then, to help Philadelphia Unions and Democrats so they won’t roll out full bore against him, slow rolls implementation.

    Debt increased $4.6 billion with a good portion going to Liberal Democratic and Union construction projects.

    Unions are doing well; the Forgotten Taxpayer, not so much.

  11. This observation–made repeatedly during recent months–again applies: Corbett must subject himself to an in-depth discussion of how he internally handled Sandusky, absent expressions of recrimination, evasion or aloofness.

    The alternative is that he will be charged with allowing a child-molester to remain at-large–leading to a “Tom and Jerry Show” formulation of what transpired–and PSU-loyalists will be subject to a subliminal spate of “Tom Killed Joe-Pa” headlines.

    Also, GOP [State and County] Committee-People continue to “smart” about his having interfered with the four endorsements of a year ago [one of whom told me recently that, as a result of Corbett’s advice, he made “his worst political mistake”]; a [multi-front] “charm-campaign” appears to be indicated.

    The other concerns regarding his interactions with a GOP-dominated legislature can be resolved–starting with selling the State Stores, which would provide $ to handle [school choice?] education [plus the Pension Bomb?]–although he should also emulate Wisconsin by moving to a more assertive “right to work” stance, as well.

    He runs a competent administration, but it seems that a “New Year’s Resolution” promising enhanced-PR has been abandoned just when Castor [who admittedly lacks statewide name-recognition] fills the vacuum [“Ya can’t beat someone with no one”] for those who don’t consider Corbett to be re-electable.

  12. John says:

    When ISN’T Tom Corbett sniping? He’s the most condescending public official I’ve seen in PA politics in a long, long time.

  13. Stan says:

    Seems like Corbett is doing the “sniping” and Castor is just laughing at him. Says a lot about the race when the incumbent is being snide and the not even announced challenger is laughing it off. Stay classy, Tom.

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