Emails, endorsements and intraparty fights. See who made this week’s list!
Todd Stephens. Very quietly, the GOP primary for Attorney General is shaping up to be one of the most competitive and entertaining races of 2016. State Sen. John Rafferty is finally running but State Rep. Todd Stephens is proving so far to be a legitimate threat. On Thursday, he revealed the endorsements of Speaker Turzai and Majority Leader Reed. While the Democratic contest will undoubtedly get the most attention, don’t sleep on the Republican race.
Seth Williams. It seemed that the Philadelphia District Attorney had a bright political future ahead of him…until Friday. Just as millions were leaving for the Labor Day weekend, Williams quietly dropped a bombshell. Despite the long string of lewd and offensive emails that Frank Fina and Marc Costanzo took part in during their time in the AG’s office, they would not be fired from their current jobs with Williams. Additionally, the Philly DA waited until yesterday to take any questions yet still didn’t have satisfactory answers. It seems it all comes down to a personal feud between Williams/Fina & Co. and the Attorney General. This battle hasn’t made anyone look good and has sadly hurt Pennsylvanians faith in their government.
Katie McGinty. Over the weekend, the Democratic Senatorial candidate picked up the support of seemingly half of all Allegheny County. Among her endorsers was Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, Congressman Mike Doyle, PA Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa and House Democratic Leader Frank Dermody. Altogether, over sixty elected officials and Democratic party members are backing McGinty. She also finally got off the fence (which she was experiencing significant heat for) and announced her support for the Obama Administration’s nuclear deal with Iran. So far, McGinty has been able to maintain her momentum as she seeks to take the nomination from Joe Sestak.
Bill Shuster. Congressman Shuster dodged a major bullet when 2012 GOP Senate nominee and multimillionaire Tom Smith had to pass on next year’s primary. Now, however, Shuster’s 2014 opponent Art Halvorson is running in Smith’s place. With the financial backing of Smith (remember we live in the post-Citizens United age of Super PACs) and the dirt Politico has been digging up on the Congressman’s personal life, it could be a long few months for Rep. Shuster.
Shaughnessy Naughton. One of the main reasons Naughton narrowly lost the 2014 Democratic primary in PA-8 was because of lack of establishment support. Her opponent Kevin Strouse was a top DCCC recruit and vastly outraised her. This time, though, she received the early endorsement from the powerful women’s group EMILY’s List. They gave some half-hearted support last year but now they’re fully behind her in next year’s contest against State Rep. Steve Santarsiero.
The tweet of the week goes to the Inquirer’s Angela Couloumbis for this overhead view of the Kathleen Kane rally (or lack thereof) in the Capitol rotunda.
The rally for PA AG Kane in the Capitol rotunda: pic.twitter.com/2jG9z51iAq
— Angela Couloumbis (@AngelasInk) September 10, 2015