December 3rd Playbook

Congressman Guy Reschenthaler has endorsed Dr. Oz for U.S. Senate, while a second Republican announces a primary challenge against Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick. Here is the Playbook. 


‘Wolf adds to mounting veto tally, kills permitless-gun bill’: The Associated Press reports that “Gov. Tom Wolf followed through on his veto threat Thursday, rejecting Republican-penned legislation to allow people to carry a firearm openly or concealed, without a permit, adding to his total for Pennsylvania’s chief executive with the most vetoes in more than four decades.”

‘Pa. legislators react to Wolf vetoing expanded concealed carry bill’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “responding to a gubernatorial veto of legislation that would have allowed for concealed carry without a permit, Pennsylvania legislative Republicans say Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf is making the state less safe.” However, “opponents, including Wolf, legislative Democrats, a handful of law enforcement associations, and gun safety advocates, say the “irresponsible” legislation creates risk for Pennsylvania amid increased gun violence.”

‘Dr. Oz receives first congressional endorsement’: The Hill reports that Rep. Guy Reschenthaler told the New York Post that he is endorsing Dr. Oz for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania.  

‘Conservative Caroline Avery announces primary challenge to Brian Fitzpatrick’: The Bucks County Courier Times reports that “conservative Republican and Bristol resident Caroline Avery announced on Thursday that she is challenging Fitzpatrick.”

The Full 2021 PA Society List of Events: Things are shaping up to be fairly subdued this weekend at Pennsylvania Society.

‘The Pennsylvania Society returns this year to NYC but with far less hoopla’: PennLive reports that “the 2021 Pennsylvania Society is back at the New York Hilton Midtown this weekend after a one-year break due to COVID-19 concerns. But it will be a smaller affair this year with fewer events and lower attendance expected.”

‘Ex-Pa. Rep. Margo Davidson pleads guilty to filing false expense reports’: PennLive reports that the “former state representative from Delaware County will be barred for life from serving in public office after pleading guilty to filing fraudulent expense reports, Attorney General Josh Shapiro said Thursday.”

‘Advocates want a more diverse General Assembly. But making that a reality is complicated’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “the space between Harrisburg and reality could be chalked up to a multitude of things, but as legislative leaders hammer out new political boundaries for the next ten years, advocates have zeroed-in on one trait in particular — how the 203 state House and 50 state Senate districts are drawn.”

‘Pennsylvania’s U.S. Senate race keeps getting more interesting… whenever you’re ready to tune in’: PennLive reports that “after a year of jockeying for position, the race to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Patrick Toomey is really starting to intensify in Pennsylvania.”

‘Senate candidate Mehmet Oz says he’s a Pennsylvania resident now. So why’s he still hanging out in his New Jersey mansion?’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “the celebrity known as “Dr. Oz” says he moved to Pennsylvania last year, but more than 20 social media posts in the last three months show him in his North Jersey mansion.”

‘The Pennsylvania Wilds is known for quiet. Residents worry fighter jet training will disturb the silence.’: Spotlight PA reports that “a proposal that would allow military planes to fly training missions less than a quarter-mile above a section of Pennsylvania prized for its preserved wilderness has left residents with more questions and concerns than answers.”

‘Despite their millions, GOP hopefuls Dr. Oz, White using pre-checked boxes for extra campaign cash’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “Oz, along with fellow Republican Dave White, who’s running for governor, are the latest GOP candidates who have included pre-checked boxes on their fundraising solicitations that set up donors to make indefinite campaign contributions.”

‘Pa. Rep. Wild sets sights on addressing U.S. supply chain vulnerabilities’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “Rep. Susan Wild, D-7th District, along with 24 other Democratic representatives, plan to send a letter to Congressional leaders Thursday, “calling for additional legislative action on [sic] to ease supply chain bottlenecks and help lower costs for their constituents.””

City & State PA’s Biggest Winners & Losers This Week: City & State PA highlights the three winners and losers in Pennsylvania politics this week.

‘Mehmet Oz has peddled ‘fat burners’ and other pseudoscience. Now he’s running for Senate in Pa.’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “Mehmet Oz, a celebrity surgeon television host turned U.S. Senate candidate, has been known to promote unproven medical supplements on The Dr. Oz Show.”

‘State Sen. Jake Corman visits Greenfield as he begins campaign for GOP nomination for governor’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “fresh on the campaign trail for Republican nomination for governor, Senate President Pro Tempore Jake Corman stopped at a former Pittsburgh steel mill Thursday evening, to speak primarily on job creation, energy and Gov. Tom Wolf’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

‘Dr. Oz’s Entry Into Senate Race Not Deterring Other Republicans From Running’: KDKA reports that “when local candidate Sean Parnell dropped out of the race for U.S. Senate last week, it seemed to open the field to many other candidates.”

‘Pa. Senate Committee Preparing Arguments On Election Audit’: KDKA reports that “Pennsylvania Senate Republicans and Democrats are preparing arguments regarding an audit of the 2020 general election and 2021 primary election.”

‘Republican governor candidate Zama campaigns in Johnstown area’: The Johnstown Tribune-Democrat reports that “Dr. Nche Zama, a retired cardiothoracic surgeon who trained at the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic and Harvard University, wants to make Pennsylvania the healthiest state in the country.”

‘Thompson blasts Democrats’ plans in telephone town hall’: The Johnstown Tribune-Democrat reports that “U.S. Rep. Glenn “GT” Thompson, R-Centre, spent a significant portion of time criticizing the Build Back Better agenda during an hour-long telephone town hall he hosted on Wednesday.”

‘Senator Corman campaigns in Erie’: WJET reports that “Republican Jake Corman stopped by Fralo Industries Thursday morning as part of his “Restore Freedom” tour. The statewide tour gives him the chance to speak with business owners and learn about the challenges they face.”

‘Dr. Oz: ‘I can’t be bought’’: Fox News reports that “Dr. Oz reveals his motivation behind running for Pennsylvania senator and weighs in on the omicron variant and more on ‘Special Report.’”

‘Pennsylvania congressman says Chinese fentanyl flowing over southern border, fueling drug crisis’: Fox News reports that “Rep. John Joyce, R-Penn., gave his warning about the Chinese-made opioids in a Thursday phone interview with Fox News.”

‘Electricity rates are rising as the temperature dips. A cold winter is expected’: StateImpactPA reports that “as energy prices rise nationwide, Pennsylvania residents will see jumps in their heating and electric bills. These increases coincide with what forecasters say will be a cold winter, prompting the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission to warn against “sticker shock.””

‘CNHI names new Harrisburg reporter’: CNHI reports that “Eric Scicchitano, a former CNHI Reporter of the Year, will become the new CNHI Pennsylvania state reporter beginning Jan. 4.”

‘Here’s how much the highest bidder offered for the Federal Courthouse at auction’: PennLive reports that “the high bid for the Ronald Reagan Federal Building and Courthouse in downtown Harrisburg came in at $10.01 million.”

‘No physics or philosophy major? Will Pa. state universities offer less as they merge?’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “combining six Pennsylvania state universities into two is supposed to expand student choice and opportunity. But is that likely if majors such as physics, philosophy and art history are going away?… ​State System of Higher Education leaders are making a prediction that — if it holds true — suggests they can. Others have doubts.” 

‘Facebook whistleblower testifies before House subcommittee chaired by Doyle’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen appeared in front of Congress once again as lawmakers continue their march on big tech CEOs and grapple with whether and how social media platforms should be responsible for their user content.”

‘Philly City Council president wants to tweak ethics rules. But he says it’s not related to Bobby Henon’s conviction’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “two weeks after a Philadelphia City Council member was convicted of bribery, Council President Darrell L. Clarke proposed a modest tweak of city ethics rules: that Council members must provide written notice when they recuse themselves from votes due to a conflict of interest.”

‘Philly Council passes bill to legalize ‘streeteries’ permanently in some areas’: WHYY reports that “Philadelphia City Council on Thursday unanimously approved a bill that makes the outdoor dining structures permanently legal in certain parts of the city, including Center City, University City, and East Passyunk.”

‘Philadelphia Council considers creation of public bank’: KYW Newsradio reports that “Philadelphia City Council will consider establishing a public bank, under legislation introduced Thursday.”

‘Time for Safehouse to ask forgiveness, not permission, on Philly supervised injection site, experts say’: WHYY reports that “for years, Philadelphia was poised to be the first city in the country to open a supervised injection site, where people could inject illegal drugs under medical supervision to prevent overdoses. On Tuesday, the city lost that race to New York City.

‘A Philly Council member nearly lost her family home. Now she has a bill to help others avoid that plight’: WHYY reports that “Philadelphia City Council on Thursday is expected to pass a bill backers hope will help people avoid the headache and expense of resolving a tangled title by enlisting funeral service providers as educators in the process.”

‘Philadelphians have gotten more Ida aid than residents of any other Pa. county’: WHYY reports that “if your car, home, or appliances were damaged by the remnants of Hurricane Ida, you could get thousands of dollars in assistance from FEMA, but time is running out to register. Philadelphians — along with residents of seven other Pennsylvania counties — are eligible for FEMA’s Individual Assistance program because of a federal disaster declaration.”

‘Jobless rates drop in Chester, Delaware, Montgomery counties’: The Daily Local News reports that “the unemployment rate in Pennsylvania was down in October, the state Department of Labor & Industry said Tuesday. In Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties the rate was also down from September, while in Berks County it held steady.”

‘Chester County judge to receive coveted award’: The Daily Local News reports that “Chester County Court of Common Pleas Judge Katherine B.L. Platt will be presented with the 2022 Pennsylvania Bar Association Family Law Section Eric Turner Memorial Award during the section’s meeting in Philadelphia.”

‘Charges Against Cletus Lee, North Braddock Mayor-Elect, Withdrawn’: KDKA reports that “North Braddock’s first Black mayor-elect, Cletus Lee went before a judge Thursday morning. The assault charge against him was withdraw during the proceeding.”

‘HUD awards $450,000 to Allegheny County Housing Authority for planning Hays Manor overhaul’: WESA reports that “Allegheny County’s Housing Authority has been awarded almost half a million dollars from the federal government to help plan for the redevelopment of a McKees Rocks public housing complex.”

‘Protest Held Outside Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald’s Home Hours Before COVID-19 Vaccination Deadline For Employees’: KDKA reports that “A small protest was held outside Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald’s home on Wednesday. Protesters gathered in the evening as the vaccine deadline for employees closed in. Allegheny County workers had until midnight to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or face losing their jobs.”

‘Allegheny County Fires Unvaccinated Employees’: KDKA reports that “some unvaccinated Allegheny County employees have been fired for failing to comply with the vaccine mandate.”

‘Pittsburgh City Council tweaks proposed parking code changes’: The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that “Pittsburgh City Council on Wednesday tweaked proposed amendments to the city’s parking code, including a provision that would allow for new types of non-resident parking permits.”

‘Delaware County Council makes several key hires’: The Delaware County Daily Times reports that “Delaware County Council unanimously approved the hiring of four key director positions Wednesday night. At the same time members approved a $29 million contract to provide medical services at the George W. Hill Correctional Facility.”

‘Petitions to ‘decriminalize’ pot in Wilkes-Barre circulating locally’: The Citizens Voice reports that “a Wilkes-Barre Shade Tree Commission member and one-time city council candidate has started a petition to “decriminalize” marijuana within city limits.”

‘Federal judge releases Scavo Capitol riot cellphone vids’: The Scranton Times-Tribune reports that “former Old Forge School Director Frank Scavo’s “tour of the freakin’ Capitol,” as he called it, during the Jan. 6 riot included an encounter with a man feeling the day’s radical nature.”

‘Allentown’s new mayor names Lehigh Valley reporter as his communications manager, selects administrative assistant’: The Allentown Morning Call reports that “Allentown Mayor-elect Matt Tuerk announced Thursday his picks for both communications manager and administrative assistant, who will work alongside him when he takes office in January.”

‘Bethlehem’s new mayor has created two new positions, one of which will focus on equity and inclusion. Here’s a Q&A with the new hires.’: The Allentown Morning Call reports that “in a first for Bethlehem, Mayor-elect J. William Reynolds will appoint a director of equity and inclusion, and a director of the mayor’s initiatives. The two newly created positions will work with the mayor and will replace the current executive assistant and assistant to the mayor positions.”

‘Will new federal funds pay for passenger rail, other Lehigh Valley projects? Officials weigh in.’: The Express-Times reports that “during a transportation funding forum Thursday hosted by the The Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce and the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission (LVPC), local and state officials cautioned that while the money is much needed and will go toward necessary projects, it doesn’t fix the dire state of transportation funding and the backlog of projects created by it.”

‘Bethlehem council backs new deputy director mayor-elect wants, after tense debate’: The Express-Times reports that “Bethlehem is headed toward adding a new leadership position in its department of community and economic development, following a debate that grew tense at times between the mayor-elect and an outgoing member of city council.”

‘County Executive-Elect Brenton Davis appoints new leaders to his administration’: WJET reports that “Erie County Executive-Elect Brenton Davis appoints two new leaders to his administration on Thursday.”

‘Future City Councilman’s Facebook post gets attention of several City of Erie officials and residents’: WJET reports that “Erie City Councilman-Elect Chuck Nelson gets the attention of several Erie city officials and residents. The future councilman leaving rocks and pieces of brick for what he calls “Pedestrians Protection” at the intersection of the Bayfront Parkway and Cranberry Street.”

‘County Council OK’s 2022 budget. Here are some key takeaways’: The Erie Times-News reports that “the budget, the largest in Erie County history and roughly $48 million higher than last year’s, includes $115.5 million in expenditures from the general fund. It also contains more than $26 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act funding, which accounts for much of the budget increase.”

‘Westmoreland County judge accuses district attorney’s office of misconduct’: WTAE reports that “a Westmoreland County judge claims the district attorney’s office abused its power by failing to transfer a Unity Township man back to the county to face charges.”

‘Montgomery County holds public hearings during 2022 budget season’: Montgomery Media reports that “area residents and officials had the opportunity Thursday to express their opinions concerning Montgomery County’s 2022 budget proposal.”

‘Lackawanna County certifies last remaining results from November election, with Chermak opposed’: The Scranton Times-Tribune reports that “the Lackawanna County election board certified the last remaining results of the Nov. 2 municipal election Thursday, with Commissioner Chris Chermak again voting no.”

‘Luzerne County manager elaborates on election consultant decision’: The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader reports that “bringing in an outside consultant to help with the November general election turned out to be a wise decision, Luzerne County Acting Manager Romilda Crocamo told council this week.”

‘Wife files PFA against Greene County DA’: The Observer-Reporter reports that “the wife of Greene County District Attorney David Russo has filed a protection-from-abuse order against him claiming he has a history of abusive behavior when intoxicated while also intimidating her with firearms at their Jackson Township home.”

‘Democrat wins tiebreaker for final seat on Bentleyville council’: The Observer-Reporter reports that “Washington County’s elections office held the casting of lots Tuesday afternoon, which decided one municipal council race that had been tied.” 

‘Altoona adopts 2022 budget’: The Altoona Mirror reports that “City Council on Wednesday adopted a $35 million budget with no tax increase for next year.”

‘No tax increase in Blair budget’: The Altoona Mirror reports that “the latest draft of Blair County’s proposed 2022 budget shows total real estate taxes will not increase.”

‘Lancaster County to offer sign-on incentive for new caseworker hires, bonuses for SEIU staff’: LNP | LancasterOnline reports that “Lancaster County’s government will offer incentives of up to $5,500 for newly hired Children & Youth Agency caseworkers, the second such hiring incentive effort launched in recent months.”

‘Lancaster school officials likely to testify in education funding trial next week’: LNP | LancasterOnline reports that “two top officials with the School District of Lancaster are expected to testify next week in a Commonwealth Court trial that could significantly alter the way schools are funded in Pennsylvania.”

‘Deja vu: Carlisle Borough Council recasts votes on rental ordinance’: The Carlisle Sentinel reports that “technical issues prompted Carlisle Borough Council to redo votes on a series of agenda items from its Nov. 9 meeting.”

‘Pa. Health Dept: More than 9K new COVID-19 cases; 3.9K hospitalized’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “the Pennsylvania Department of Health confirmed 9,143 new cases of COVID-19 in the commonwealth on Thursday, bringing the statewide total to more than 1.75 million since the beginning of the pandemic.”

John Baer: Pa.’s history of phony budgets brings us infrastructure woes and a bridge-tolling plan 
Jennifer Berrier: Raising the minimum wage is just one way to spur job growth and speed Pa.’s recovery from COVID-19
Paul Muschick: How Gov. Wolf fired a warning shot to Pennsylvania lawmakers on congressional redistricting
Mark O’Keefe: What the 2021 judicial races tell us about 2022 and beyond 
Ernest Owens: Philly Just Surpassed 500 Homicides. Can We Admit Gun Buyback Programs Aren’t Helping?
Paul Muschick: Dr. Oz for U.S. Senate? Pennsylvania doesn’t need carpetbaggers like him
Harry Campbell: How we can protect hunting, fishing and boating in Pennsylvania
Robert Beard: Labor Shortage? Why slow down immigration?
John L. Micek: Most school shooters get their guns at home – and we’re buying more | Thursday Morning Coffee
Inquirer Editorial Board: How Pa. can protect abortion rights no matter what the Supreme Court decides
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Dr. Oz’s Senate candidacy could be bad news for Pa. Republicans 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Homeless in the bleakness of the coming winter
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: Examining the Lancaster County commissioners’ squabble with the county president judge over staff shortages
Trudy Rubin: Biden’s Summit of Democracies must examine America’s backsliding at home 
Zykia Wright, Daisha Walker-Briggs, Kahleel Odom, Amirah Parker, and Bryant Carter: Philly teens: With the city in crisis, will you help us change it?
Lucian Martin: Five days without a shower, not enough toilet paper, medical emergencies: What I experienced in a Philly jail 
Will Bunch: Michigan school slaughter exposes 2nd Amendment as poison pill of the American Experiment 
Katherine Rapin: How To Help Afghan Refugees In Philadelphia Now

7 Responses

  1. If Gov Wolf and the Dems were really concerned about crimes with firearms in Pa they would be condemning the plea bargaining and bond releases that the Philadelphia DA provides to accused every day. The Dems have no credibility on the crime issue if their DA’s continue to release criminals with no bond and plea bargain crimes with firearms down. Where is the 4th estate in exposing this?

    1. The Philly DA is reducing the use of punitive bail for non-violent suspects/accused, rather than hold them in jail or bankrupt them to make bail (or cause them to lose jobs, or miss mortgage payments, or break up their families).

      1. Interesting concept, protect the suspect from consequences while the victims are on their own. Interaction with the criminal justice system is almost entirely voluntary i.e. drug use, shoplifting, burglary, assault etc. If you don’t want to post bond, don’t commit a crime. The Christmas parade murderer in Wisconsin was out on a similar bail program and 6 people are dead.

  2. Fitzpatrick being challenged after crushing excellent Dem candidates and NJ celebrity doctor Ozzie running plus Trumper Corman running and Roe v Wade going by way of the Edsel spells big Dem turnout and the only way Dems could win. In other words, R’s are grabbing defeat from the jaws of victory

  3. So Guy Retchinsurrectionist is supporting New Jersey mansion resident Dr. Oz for PA Senator…. But hey, he’s got name recognition and millions of his own money to spend so sure, sounds like who working class Pennsylvanians want as their next US Senator.

  • Who are you voting for in the PA Supreme Court race?

    • Dan McCaffery (61%)
    • Carolyn Carluccio (37%)
    • Still undecided (2%)

    Total Voters: 344

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