Politicos from around Pa. are bumping elbows in New York City Friday night and the political moves are many. Here is the hard news as well as some of the rumors.
1. U.S. Senator Bob Casey won’t rule out a run for Governor in 2014.
“If I start speaking to a race in 2014 that’s as if we’re focused on 2014 instead of 2012,” he said, not coyly. He emphasized his efforts to avoid the ‘fiscal cliff’ and address some foreign policy problems. “Look, I’m really happy where I am. I’m really busy.”
“I’m listening for the answer here!” joked Casey’s wife Terese.
2. U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz is indeed considering a run for Governor. Rumors had swirled following her hiring of Pa. Dems fundraising guru Aubrey Montgomery.
“It’s not a decision I’m taking lightly,” she said. She acknowledged some factors counting against a bid after someone else mentioned her acumen in the U.S. House – including an possible path to leadership.
3. Former Congresswoman Kathy Dahlkemper is exploring a bid for governor in 2014, making her the latest of about a dozen prospective Democrats.
She told PoliticsPA that she’s seriously looking at a run and meeting with various Dems and potential donors. She was introduced all night as a candidate. There are a few factors that boost her, namely that she’s the only possible candidate so far from western Pa. and one of just two women.
4. Pa. state Senator Mike Stack of northeast Philadelphia is also exploring a bid for governor, making him the latest of about a baker’s dozen Democrats to consider a run. He was networking late into Friday night to gauge interest in a campaign.
5. Congressman-elect Keith Rothfus was in demand Friday night, a contrast from the year before when he had to negotiate his way into some events. But it’s not going to his head, he said, and he’s still a “regular guy.”
“$500, $600 a night? That’s unbelievable,” he said of hotel accommodations in the vicinity of Pa. Society events. “I’m staying at the Holiday Inn.”
1. Pa. Treasurer Rob McCord is widely expected to run for Governor in 2014 but according to a few Pa. Society attendees he said Friday that he would defer to Schwartz is she runs. He has about $1.4 mil in his campaign account; she has $3.1 mil.
2. Some say that Schwartz is teasing her name for 2014 but truly intends to stay in the House… for now. The idea is that her eyes are ultimately on Pat Toomey’s Senate seat in 2016 if leadership doesn’t pan out.
3. People watching outgoing Pa. Auditor General Jack Wagner say they think he’s likely to take the plunge and run for Mayor of Pittsburgh.
4. Kathy Boockvar, the Bucks County attorney who ran for Congress in PA-8 in 2012 and Pa. Commonwealth Court in 2011 is set to start a new gig: Chief Counsel for Auditor General Eugene DePasquale.