We’re inside a month until election day, and some races are tightening up while others fall off the table. Here’s who moved closer to the goal line this week, and who fumbled.
Matt Smith. The state Rep. running for state Senate ran into a problem this week when his GOP opponent Raja lambasted him in an attack ad for breaking his promise not to take a pension. Then Capitolwire looked into it, and found out it’s 100% fair. Smith ran in 2006 and promised not to take a pension. During his re-elect bid, he said he would take a pension. Fair enough. But then, he applied to retroactively activate his pension for 2007 and 2008 – the years he’d promised not to take. Ouch. On the bright side, he picked up a rousing endorsement from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, which accompanied a similarly thorough criticism of Raja.
Justin Simmons. One of Dems’ top 2012 targets, Rep. Justin Simmons (R-Lehigh) appears to be on a roll against public school teacher Kevin Deely. He picked up the endorsement of the Easton Express-Times, launched a new TV ad, and by one account (with video), he cleaned up at a debate Monday night. He looks like he’d have given Mitt Romney a run for his money on the debate stage.
Kathy Boockvar. Once Dems’ highest hope for a congressional pickup, this week the woman challenging Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-Bucks) learned she’d be going it mostly alone. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee nixed almost $600K in planned ad spending on her behalf. Don’t be surprised to see the remaining amount allotted for the race follow suit. She did have a high point, though, when she announced having raised $520K in the 3rd quarter.
Philly TV stations. Going along with Boockvar’s problem, our friends in TV station ad departments have a surprising amount of space available in October. The lack of competitive congressional campaigns is rough, compounded by the lack of presidential action. The Philadelphia media market was miss thang in 2008. Not this year.
Bobby Henon. The Philadelphia City Councilman (Dem) is making a name for himself so far during his first term. A smartphone app he championed to fight urban blight has caught on and has found success shaming delinquent property owners into cleaning up their act. The lede in the highly favorable Daily News article about it features GOP operative Joe DeFelice singing Henon’s praises.
Scranton. The Electric City got a shoutout during the VP debate Thursday, but not a good one. Paul Ryan had a gotcha moment with Scranton native son Joe Biden when he asked the VP if he know the unemployment there.
Biden said no. It’s gone from 8.5 percent to 10 since Obama took office, Ryan said.
Jake Wheatley. Who needs this?
Tweet of the week: Jon Delano, KDKA
Two thirds into the debate, my prediction — Romney will say Ryan won, Obama will say Biden won. Oh, wait. They said that an hour ago!
— Jon Delano (@JonDelano) October 12, 2012
Facebook post of the week: Brian Sims
Brian Sims, who posted this unity photo with Rep. Babette Josephs (D-Phila), the woman he beat in the April primary. Unopposed in the general election, Sims will be the first openly gay person elected to serve in Harrisburg.