Independent voters see a way to voting in the primary, redistricting reform moves forward, and voter turnout continues to lag. See who made this week’s Ups & Downs!
Independent Voters. State Senate President Pro-Tempore Joe Scarnati announced his support for opening up Pennsylvania’s primaries to independent and non-affiliated voters and saying he would introduce the legislation, showing support from a Republican leader in both the state Senate and House, possibly opening the door to it becoming a reality.
Lois Kaneshiki. Blair County Republican Committee Chairwoman Lois Kaneshiki lost her re-election to the Republican State Committee in last week’s election, but is reportedly exploring ways to change the bylaws to allow her to keep her position.
Voter Turnout. Just 18% of voters went out to the polls in last week’s primary, which was up from the 2014 primaries, but still abysmally small.
Tom Ellis. The now former Montco GOP Chair candidate dropped out of the race following inquiries about past allegations of abuse and sexual harassment and sent a very angry letter about the allegations and the circumstances surrounding the race.
Redistricting Reform. The state Senate took the lead on changing the way Pennsylvania draws its Congressional and Legislative maps by passing a constitutional amendment unanimously out of committee to set up an independent commission to draw the maps.
Nick Miccarelli. In the latest move in the saga of state Rep. Nick Miccarelli following the allegations of physical and sexual assault by two women, state House leaders stripped him of his committee assignments and moved his seat to the back of the chamber.
Bonus Up/Down: Every week, PoliticsPA will be including a bonus up or down, that is exclusive to Playbook email subscribers. To sign up to see the bonus arrow click here.
The tweet of the week goes to Associated Press reporter Marc Levy for his take on the AFL-CIO’s definition of jagoff.
Not what I expected when I opened this AFL-CIO press release, but here you go, for your reading pleasure and edification about Pittsburgh and the words they invented … pic.twitter.com/MkS9qDpXiE
— Marc Levy (@timelywriter) May 18, 2018
This website said that voting was down to 18% of the voters in the last primary! Yikes! Is anyone listening here? When you have participation in the essence of democracy–voting–at less than one in 5 voters it is a fiasco. On top of that, this 18% doesn’t even include those people not registered to vote meaning the overall percentage of people active in our democracy could 5% of the citizenry. It’s urgent that a reform happen asap to redistricting because we are losing people fast who are walking away from the process. They are giving up a stake in being involved in their government. At the very least, redistricting reform would allow for a fundamental fairness to come back into our selection process of choosing leaders.
Ellis should get an up arrow for walking away from the hot mess that is MCRC. In trying to embarrass Ellis, MCRC only embarrassed themselves and the whole party with their planted hit piece and everyone in Montco knows this. Welcome to the Havey/Becker/Spangler regime.
Dale Kerns passing Lou Barletta in the polls should be the biggest up!
What kind of drugs could possibly cause a hallucination of this magnitude???
Sadly, the new version of Senate Bill 22 actually eliminated the independent ctizens’ commission, and put all the real Redistricting power back into the hands of legislators who would pick the members of the restructured Commission.
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