State Rep. White to GOP: Bring Back Proposal to Sell Governor’s Mansion
State Rep. Jesse White (D-46) is entering session this week with guns blazing, keen to remind a Republican colleague of a proposal he made during last year’s budget debate.
His target: State Rep. Jim Christiana (R-15), who made national news last year when he suggested that the Governor’s Mansion be sold to help balance the state budget.
In an email obtained by PoliticsPA from a senior House Democrat and confirmed by White’s office, the Representative says that he wants to see Rep. Christiana re-introduce his proposal now that Republican Tom Corbett will be occupying the official residence.
“I have been eagerly awaiting the co-sponsorship memo to re-introduce this proposal to spare the taxpayers the living expenses of Governor-elect Corbett, but oddly enough, he has not yet released such a memo for the upcoming legislative session.”
White is seeking co-signatories for a letter to Rep. Christiana encouraging him to re-introduce his proposal to sell the Governor’s Mansion.
“I would invite my Democratic colleagues to sign on so he knows we are all behind him in his efforts to limit the burden on Pennsylvania’s taxpayers,” White continued. “I want to make sure Rep. Christiana gets all of the credit he deserves for taking a principled stand against the new administration.”
Rep. Christiana says that he is planning to re-introduce the measure in the near future and he will circulate a co-sponsorship memo soon.
“It’s already been drafted. I will be re-submitting it in the coming weeks, definitely before the budget,” Christiana said.
“The mansion costs taxpayers several million dollars every year. It’s egregious no matter who’s living there, Republican or Democrat.”
It’s unclear how much support Christiana’s proposal will muster, even with the large GOP majority in the House. Last session Christiana’s bill garnered the co-sponsorship of 11 lawmakers: 10 Republicans and Democrat Greg Vitali.
In any case, White’s opening salvo should come as a warning to the GOP: Democrats are eager to seize upon any incongruity between Republicans’ rhetoric in the minority and their actions in the majority.