December 20th Playbook

A pair of Lehigh Valley Republicans announce that they will not seek reelection in the state House in 2020, while a second Republican formally enters the race for Auditor General. Here is the Playbook.

 

DeFoor Announces Bid For Auditor General: The Dauphin County Controller is the second Republican to formally join the race.

Hahn, Simmons Announce Retirement: The Lehigh Valley Republicans were first elected to the state House in 2010.

Burn Endorses Dickinson: Former Pennsylvania Democratic Party Chairman Jim Burn endorsed Jerry Dickinson for the 18th Congressional District. Dickinson is challenging longtime Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Allegheny) in the Democratic primary. 

Nutter To Serve as National Chair For Bloomberg Campaign: Former Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, who previously supported former Vice President Joe Biden’s bid for the White House, is endorsing billionaire and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and will serve as national political chair for the Bloomberg presidential campaign, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. 

 

Legislative Election Update:

HD-131: State Rep. Justin Simmons (R-Lehigh) announced on Thursday that he will not be seeking reelection in 2020. Simmons, who was first elected to the state House in 2010, won his most recent reelection bid in 2018 by 5.5 points over Democrat Andrew Lee.

HD-138: State Rep. Marcia Hahn (R-Northampton) announced on Thursday that she will not be seeking reelection in 2020. Hahn, who was first elected to the state House in 2010, won her most recent reelection bid in 2018 by 17 points over Democrat Dean Donaher.

 

Harrisburg & DC   
Morning Call: Up next in Trump impeachment: Senate trial with Bob Casey and Pat Toomey as jurors
Morning Call: Itching to unseat a Pennsylvania state lawmaker? Odds are you will fail 
Billy Penn: How every lawmaker from PA voted on Trump’s impeachment 
WESA: Casey Says New Witnesses Should Be Called In Senate Impeachment Trial
Spotlight PA: Canceled meetings and finger-pointing plague top Pa. economic development agency
AP: Coke plant shuts down amid mounting pollution concerns
Patriot News: Gov. Wolf ‘disappointed’ by Supreme Court ruling on Affordable Care Act
Patriot News: Pa. lawmaker plans bill that would punish animal cruelty by revoking hunting license
Post-Gazette: Senate confirms Robert Colville as federal judge for Western District of Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Lehigh Valley House Repubs Hahn, Simmons announce they’re retiring in 2020
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: U.S. Chamber of Commerce warns of ‘catastrophic’ consequences of a potential fracking ban in Pa.
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: GOP Senate aide’s appellate court appointment puts new scrutiny on judicial nominations.
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: ‘People’s lives are on the line,’ Pa’s top insurance official says after federal court strikes down Obamacare mandate
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: U.S. House Dems decry Trump’s food stamp cuts: ‘Ebeneezer Scrooge would be proud’
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Watch 2 Pa. House Republicans play a piano duet of ‘O Holy Night’ in the Capitol rotunda
WITF: Pa. officials break silence on controversial ExpressVote XL voting machine
WITF: She was shot by a stranger in Chester County. She thinks a red flag law might have prevented it.
PLSReporter: Dems blast Turzai for stalled minimum wage bill
Politico: What Democrats Can Learn From the Forgotten Impeachment of James Buchanan
National Journal: Raimondo to Set Up Field Operations in Presidential Battlegrounds
National Journal: Obama’s Judicial Nominees Finally Get to the Bench
Fox News: Rep. Guy Reschenthaler says Republican Party is stronger than ever after impeachment vote
CNN: Trump county in Pennsylvania stands by their man
CNN: GOP county chair: Impeachment changed my view on 2020

 

Philadelphia 
WHYY Newsworks: ‘I trusted her’: West Philly residents weigh in on replacement for Movita Johnson-Harrell
WHYY Newsworks: Kenney expected to sign bill requiring developers give back to Philly communities
WHYY Newsworks: Religion and politics 
Inquirer: Philadelphia a city of extremes: High incomes, high poverty, report shows
Inquirer: Philadelphia property assessments won’t change much in 2021 after city scraps revaluation plans
Inquirer: How newspaper front pages reported Donald Trump’s impeachment
Inquirer: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg says her Philadelphia honor is ‘pure joy’
Philadelphia Tribune: Thomas Jefferson University to acquire Fox Chase Cancer Center
KYW Newsradio: Philly DA files more charges against man accused of shooting 6 cops this summer
KYW Newsradio: Woman says her protests are the reason Philadelphia Housing Authority police have new signage

 

SEPA
Daily Local News: Killion’s criminal justice reform signed by governor
Daily Local News: West Chester council president bows out amid fanfare
Delco Daily Times: Pols plot next steps in impeachment drama
Delco Daily Times: Chinook expenditures approved by House and Senate
Bucks Courier Times: Justice center costs again contentious for Montgomery County budget
Bucks Local News: Falls Supervisor Bob Harvie resigns seat to become Bucks County Commissioner
Bucks Local News: Newtown Township Supervisors hold the line on taxes with passage of $13M final budget for 2020

 

Pittsburgh 
Post-Gazette: Senate confirms Robert Colville as federal judge for Western District of Pennsylvania
Post-Gazette: Residents, activists concerned about racist graffiti in Swissvale
Post-Gazette: Chief secretary sues city schools, says she’s been denied raises because she’s white
KDKA: Officials: School Tax Impasse Could Shut Down Pittsburgh Schools By February
PLSReporter: Pittsburgh City Controller releases audit of the city’s law department
Pittsburgh Business Times: Study: Hydraulic fracturing ban would be costly to Pennsylvania 
Pittsburgh Business Times: URA board to vote on credit-building program for small businesses
City Paper: Head organizer of Pittsburgh Pride takes leave of absence after charged with impersonating a law enforcement officer
Tribune Review: Western Pennsylvania lawmaker wants hunting licenses revoked for animal cruelty
Tribune Review: White secretary at Pittsburgh Public Schools sues district, alleging racial discrimination

 

SWPA 
Beaver County Times: Dueling impeachment protests lacked permits, notification
Beaver County Times: House approves bill to keep violent offenders from early release
Beaver County Times: Beaver County to lease property for reassessment work
Beaver County Times: DEP orders Aliquippa to better monitor drinking water contaminants
Observer-Reporter: Monessen 2020 budget won’t include tax increase
Observer-Reporter: Local share of casino revenue totals just over $6.9 million; committee recommends 35 projects
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Johnstown Redevelopment Authority receives nearly $1.4 million funding for project
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Cambria County plans $16.9M radio upgrade; Current system’s reliability is ‘questionable,’ 911 coordinator says

 

NEPA
Times-Tribune: The great divide: Opinions for and against Trump impeachment run deep locally
Times-Tribune: City property taxes to rise 2.4% after Evans declines budget veto
Times-Tribune: Controversial drug treatment center to open pending court ruling 
Citizens Voice: Experts unsure how impeachment vote will affect Cartwright
Citizens Voice: Gov. Wolf announces funding for community partnerships
The Times Leader: Vough named county president judge

 

South Central 
Carlisle Sentinel: Perry defends Trump’s Ukraine inquiries in impeachment vote
Carlisle Sentinel: Hampden Township approves budget with no tax increase
Patriot News: Pa. reps hold late-night, impromptu Christmas piano concert at state Capitol
Patriot News: 10th Congressional candidate Tom Brier to hold event in York tonight
Patriot News: Harrisburg School District acting superintendent steps down, replacement appointed
Patriot News: Pa. lawmaker plans bill that would punish animal cruelty by revoking hunting license
York Dispatch: York City’s new top cop focusing on violent crime, building bridges, he says
LNP | LancasterOnline: Day after historic impeachment vote in Washington, D.C., life carries on as usual in Lancaster County
York Daily Record: How York’s new police commissioner plans to run the city department

 

Lehigh Valley      
Morning Call: Rep. Justin Simmons says he will not seek re-election to PA House seat in 131st district
Morning Call: State Rep. Marcia Hahn of Northampton County says she won’t seek reelection 
Morning Call: Candidates already circling two Lehigh Valley seats opening in state Legislature
Morning Call: Here’s how Lehigh Valley lawmakers voted on impeaching President Trump – and what comes next
Morning Call: No confidence: Northampton County election board calls for new voting machines for 2020
Morning Call: Senate confirms Emmaus man for federal judgeship in Allentown
Morning Call: Lower Saucon Council fails to fill vacancy, which could significantly affect board’s composition in 2020
Morning Call: What to do about the state of housing in the Lehigh Valley? Planning Commission gathers group to brainstorm ideas
Morning Call: After hourlong squabble, Allentown City Council creates youth advisory body  
Express Times: Lehigh Valley state Rep. Justin Simmons won’t seek re-election 
Express Times: Pa. state Rep. Marcia Hahn announces her retirement 
Express Times: On impeachment: What the Lehigh Valley and Warren County’s U.S. reps had to say 
Reading Eagle: Berks County commissioners bid farewell to outgoing colleague at final meeting of 2019

 

North by Northwest
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Commissioners approve no-tax-hike 2020 budget 
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Goodbye to retirees, hello to new board members
KDKA: Erie Coke Plant Closed, Workers Turned Away At Gate
Erie Times-News: Erie City Council signs off on 2020 budget

 

Opinion  
Inquirer Editorial Board: Commutations can relieve costs of sick and aging prison population — and reverse decades of bad policy
Inquirer Editorial Board: Here’s a ‘people’s tax credit’ that can make a difference in the city
Inquirer Staff: Should the exclusive real estate practice of ‘pocket listings’ be banned?
York Dispatch Editorial Board: Forget the facts, ma’am 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Pushing democracy: Lawsuit seeks removal of a Pittsburgh councilman
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Better trade agreement: NAFTA replacement should be approved
Scott Perry: It’s time to take the offensive in the war on PTSD
John Baer: Pa.’s most vulnerable have a new voice. Will it be heard? 
John L. Micek: Philly lawmaker’s bill aims to reduce Pa.’s disturbing maternal mortality rate | Thursday Morning Coffee
Colin McNickle: Why is Pittsburgh still dogged by sluggish job growth? Take a closer look at the city’s economic policies
Robert I. Field, Ph.D., J.D., M.P.H.: Americans’ health care – and preexisting condition coverage – is again at risk 
Christine Flowers: The liberal left should chill out about Neil Gorsuch’s ‘Fox & Friends’ appearance 
Joseph N. DiStefano: How Boeing 737 Max cutbacks hit Pa. factories from Concordville to Harrisburg
Signe Wilkinson: Political Cartoon: Donald Trump emojis Nancy Pelosi
Sarah Burns: What happens in the Senate now that the House has impeached Trump: 5 questions answered

December 20th, 2019 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Playbook, Top Stories | No Comments