December 17th Playbook

SD45: State Certifies Brewster Win: On Wednesday, the Department of State certified state Sen. Jim Brewster as the winner in his reelection bid for SD-45. However, Republicans indicated they won’t swear him in until further legal proceedings.

McLaughlin Announces Candidacy for PA Supreme Court: Maria McLaughlin was the highest vote-getter of the nine candidates running for the state’s Superior Court in 2017.

Scanlon Introduces Legislation That Would Criminalize Intimidation of Election Officials and Poll Workers: Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon introduced the Protecting Our Election Workers Act of 2020 and also sent a letter to Attorney General Bill Barr requesting the Department of Justice investigate threats made at election officials during the 2020 election.

Harrisburg & DC   
Inquirer: Pa. threatens at least 150 restaurants with fines or closure for allowing indoor dining in defiance of state ban
Inquirer: Biden’s inauguration will look different. Meet the Philly woman who’s helping plan it.
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Trump takes a final shot at Obamacare exchanges. How Pa. is impacted 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. Senate tees up constitutional amendment opening civil window for sex abuse survivors 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: COVID surge in Pa. prisons leads to calls for lockdown at all facilities 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: COVID-19 in Pa.: Health Dept. confirms 10,049 new cases, 278 new fatalities 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: New report gives Pa. a D-Minus for its civil forfeiture laws | Thursday Morning Coffee
Washington Post: The Trailer: Two electoral college contests for two Americas
PLSReporter: Pa. college enrollments decrease for yet another year, national report finds 
PLSReporter: Officials urge Pennsylvanians to stay home, limit travel amidst winter storm 
PLSReporter: Dec. 16 COVID-19 Update: 6,295 hospitalized; 1,264 in the ICU
KDKA: Pa. Senator Pat Toomey Calls It ‘Wildly Inappropriate’ For Republicans To Obstruct Joe Biden’s Win
KDKA: Around The Table: Biden’s Speech Following Electoral College Vote
KDKA: Attorney General Josh Shapiro Shuts Down Student Loan Forgiveness Scam, Gets $74,000 In Refunds 
WESA: PA Restaurant Group Wants Latest COVID Restrictions Reversed
Patriot News: Pa. urges colleges to delay bringing students back to campus in spring as COVID-19 cases spike 
Patriot News: Former Penn State President Graham Spanier persists in fight against Jerry Sandusky-related conviction 
Patriot News: Pa. Supreme Court rejects plea by murdered cop’s widow to oust Philly DA’s office from Mumia Abu-Jamal case
Post-Gazette: AG’s office halts Pa. operations of company accused of illegal student loan forgiveness scheme
National Journal: Val Arkoosh Mulls 2022 Senate Bid 
CNHI News: Lawmakers could let voters decide whether to allow lawsuits for abuse survivors in 2021
Politico: Sen. Bob Casey says he sees an opportunity for Biden and McConnell to cut deals  
The Center Square: Lawmaker reintroduces impeachment resolution for Pennsylvania governor

Inquirer: Biden’s inauguration will look different. Meet the Philly woman who’s helping plan it.
Inquirer: Philly DA candidate Carlos Vega points to gun and violence statistics, saying he will make the city safer
Inquirer: Pa. Supreme Court dismisses petition seeking to remove DA’s Office from handling Mumia Abu-Jamal’s appeals
Inquirer: Who’s on the mayor’s short list for Philly school board? Panel releases names.
Inquirer: Police shot a Philly man, then accused him of rape. He was exonerated after 19 years.  
KYW Newsradio: Philly City Council explores economic impact of COVID-19, including long-term effect on wage tax
KYW Newsradio: Kenney now has a list of candidates for Philadelphia’s school board
KYW Newsradio: Pa. Supreme Court denies widow’s appeal to remove Philly DA from Abu-Jamal case
KYW Newsradio: Winter storm dumps snow on Philly region; Officials ask public to stay home to prevent strain on hospitals
KYW Newsradio: Subcontractors at Philadelphia International Airport call on Congress to include them in stimulus package
Philadelphia Citizen: Hope Matters 
Philadelphia Business Journal: As first doses of Covid-19 vaccine arrive in Philadelphia, Temple Health System sets plan in motion
Billy Penn: Nearly 30% of Philly’s remote learning centers have closed for COVID. Staff are raising safety concerns.

Daily Local News: New round of grants designed to help county’s small businesses 
Daily Local News: CCEDC steps in to help small businesses in Chester County struggling during pandemic
Delco Daily Times: Delco has not received any COVID vaccines
Bucks County Courier Times: Bucks seeks state help on gym, restaurant shutdowns
Inquirer: Delaware County is set to pay $410,000 to two firms to help regain control of its embattled, privately run county jail
Montgomery Media: Montgomery County hospitals receiving coronavirus vaccine this week

Tribune Review: Pittsburgh council on track to adopt 2021 budget that doesn’t cut police funding 
Tribune Review: Advocates demand virtual access to Allegheny County criminal courts, ‘It’s not difficult’ 
Tribune Review: Allegheny County’s covid rates still rising as some businesses ignore restrictions 
Tribune Review: Allegheny County sees most new coronavirus cases in state
WESA: Allegheny County Residents Told To ‘Shun’ Businesses That Don’t Comply With COVID-19 Mitigation 
WESA: Will Giving Pittsburghers Guaranteed Income Reduce Inequality? These Researchers Think So
Post-Gazette: PPS board declines to raise taxes, increasing district deficit 
Post-Gazette: Donation to add acreage to North Park in Hampton 
Post-Gazette: COVID-19 Update: Allegheny County reports state’s highest daily case increase
City Paper: What local LGBTQ organizers and legislators say must be done post-election 
City Paper: Allegations of sexual misconduct against a former Pittsburgh Post-Gazette journalist were an open secret. Did the universities he worked for help keep it that way?
City Paper: Study shows most COVID-era diners are, in fact, as terrible to service workers as presumed
City Paper: An ongoing tally of confirmed coronavirus cases and deaths in Allegheny County
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pennsylvania: Wolf Administration To Provide Nearly $4 Million CARES Act Funding To Local Counties 
KDKA: Hunter Biden The Focus Of Federal Investigation In Pittsburgh Involving U.S. Attorney Scott Brady And FBI  
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: December On Track To Be Allegheny County’s Deadliest Month 
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: Allegheny Co. Health Dept. Reports 1,074 New COVID-19 Cases And 13 Additional Deaths

Altoona Mirror: Blair OKs budget in 2-1 decision
Observer-Reporter: Emery retiring as Washington County president judge, but seeking to remain as senior judge 
Observer-Reporter: New COVID-19 deaths reported in Washington, Greene, Fayette counties
Beaver County Times: Beaver County reaches 6,593 COVID cases
Post-Gazette: Butler Area School Board, parents file lawsuit against Wolf, cabinet members
Tribune Review: Westmoreland covid hospitalizations up but Excela officials say they can handle it
Tribune Review: Westmoreland County surpasses 15K coronavirus cases
KDKA: COVID-19 In Washington County: Monongahela Valley Hospital Worker Gets County’s First Coronavirus Vaccination
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: UPDATED | Cambria, state set records for COVID-19 deaths, free local testing begins Friday

Times-Tribune: Scranton City Council adopts amended $114.5M budget for 2021 
Times-Tribune: Region sets new record for single-day COVID-19 case increase
The Times Leader: Judge Amesbury announces retirement; moving to senior status 
The Times Leader: Dallas ZIP code appears to be new COVID-19 hot spot 
The Times Leader: One-day record 485 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in county; deaths at 389
Citizens Voice: Wilkes-Barre mayor makes final offer on budget compromise 
Citizens Voice: Judge Amesbury announces retirement from Luzerne County bench  

South Central 
Patriot News: Dauphin County Commissioners pass 2021 budget that includes no tax increase 
Patriot News: Harrisburg district judge asked for police chief, pulled pill bottle from car during son’s arrest: court records
York Dispatch: York County adopts $236.3 million budget, keeps taxes flat in 2021 
York Dispatch: York County has seven additional COVID-19 deaths, 421 new cases
Carlisle Sentinel: Carlisle passes budget without tax increase despite the pinch from COVID-19 
Carlisle Sentinel: DOH: 195 new cases of COVID-19 and 9 additional deaths for Cumberland County in Wednesday’s report
LNP | LancasterOnline: Lancaster County eyes another $3.2 million in aid to struggling businesses 

Lehigh Valley      
Morning Call: Upper Milford Township Supervisor Joyce Moore announces campaign for Lehigh County commissioner
Morning Call: Bethlehem councilman wants to suspend open container laws during restaurant ban, but a quick fix isn’t likely
Morning Call: Bethlehem passes budget, boosting money for police, but also hiking taxes to help deal with pandemic
Morning Call: Pennsylvania coronavirus update: 10,049 more cases and 278 more deaths Wednesday
Reading Eagle: First COVID vaccines arriving in Berks hospitals, but won’t be available to the public yet
Reading Eagle: Berks County coroner adds 7 more COVID deaths for 53 deaths this month
Express Times: Bethlehem passes budget with 5% tax hike and new stormwater fee
Express Times: Pa. coronavirus update: State’s COVID-19 death toll tops 13K; 10K new cases, 270 deaths reported Wednesday; Lehigh Valley passes 800 deaths, nears 30K cases | Pa. COVID-19 county case map (12/16/20)
WFMZ: Bethlehem City Council approves 2021 budget with 5% tax increase 

North by Northwest
Centre Daily Times: What State College’s mayor, council president said in statement supportive of state’s COVID-19 efforts
Centre Daily Times: Dec. 16 update: Pa. reports more than 10,000 new COVID-19 cases; Centre County adds 105
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Finance committee skeptical of mayor’s tax-reduction plan
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Lycoming County 165 new COVID-19 cases
Erie Times-News: Erie’s 2021 budget approved by City Council
Erie Times-News: COVID grants available to Erie County businesses
Erie Times-News: Senator to highlight Opportunity Zones in Erie
Erie Times-News: Erie nursing homes expect vaccine within weeks

Jennifer Stefano: Gov. Wolf’s COVID-19 restrictions will decimate small businesses across the state
Paul Muschick: Ridiculous lawsuit against Pennsylvania claims ‘a face mask is a symbol of oppression’
York Dispatch Editorial Board: Gov. Wolf fumbles ball when he prohibited parents at Penn State’s Senior Day
Arthur E. Morris and Eric J. Epstein: Three Mile Island cleanup needs to be fully funded
Ben Safran and Terri Burgin: Peco should step up on solar to make the Philly region healthier 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Spend the OD money now 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Warden corrects misstep on access to books
Christine Flowers: Why only some accomplished women deserve ‘respect’
Jeffrey A. Singer and Josh Bloom: Misplaced blame for opioid epidemic harms pain patients 
Mary Beth Schluckebier and Shane Taylor: With a possible COVID-19 eviction surge looming, Pa. must seal eviction records
Chris Kelly: Silence only helps the virus
Lloyd E. Sheaffer: It’s a time to heal – and to move forward together 
Signe Wilkinson: Political Cartoon: Evicting Donald Trump

2 Responses

  1. GOP has no shame and no integrity, and are used to looking ridiculous when losing crazy election challenges. Look at their rabid pursuit of absurd challenges to Trump defeat.

  2. The courts clearly are reluctant to throw out ballots that have been counted repeatedly and affirmed by other courts only to change the results of an election. Sen Brewster won. This has been affirmed by the courts. The Senate Republicans wanting to court shop to get a different result will not prevail but only drag out seating Brewster and make them look poorly.

  • Will Doug Mastriano Run For U.S. Senate?

    • No. Not Enough Support From Mainstream GOP. (91%)
    • Yes. Let Doug Be Doug. (9%)

    Total Voters: 892

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