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February 25th Playbook

Senate race on pace to become most expensive in PA history. Ciarrocchi pivots from governor’s race to U.S. House race. Meuser and Keller set to battle for 9th District nod. Irwin picks up key endorsements in 18th District race. Harden makes his 76ers debut tonight. Here is the Playbook.

PA Weather
DuBois | ice storm warning until 10, 36 and falling
Gettysburg | rain then sun, 44
Stroudsburg | rain, freezing rain, 41

PA Sports
Penguins | lost to New Jersey 6-1
Flyers, 76ers idle


Meuser, Keller to Tangle for the 9th District GOP Nod: Following the announcement of a new Congressional map for Pennsylvania, it is game-on between Rep. Dan Meuser (R-9) and Rep. Fred Keller (R-12).

PA Senate Race on Pace to Become Most Expensive in State History: It’s only just begun. Pennsylvania is three months away from its primary election and the Keystone State is already on track to conduct the most expensive primary in its history.

GOP Governor Race: Ciarrocchi Suspends Campaign for Governor: Guy Ciarrocchi, president and CEO of the Chester County Chamber of Business and Industry, has announced that he has suspended his campaign for Governor.

  • AP: One more drops from GOP field for Pennsylvania governor
  • Daily Local News: Guy Ciarrocchi suspends campaign for Pennsylvania governor

‘Wolf officials argue to keep mail-in balloting during appeal’: The Associated Press reports that “the Wolf administration on Thursday asked the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to keep the state’s mail-in voting law in place while the justices consider a lower-court ruling throwing it out.”

‘Pa. election officials argue against GOP bid to use old maps’: The Associated Press reports that “it would be premature for the state Supreme Court to order Pennsylvania’s legislative elections this year to be held based on old maps of state House and Senate districts, top state elections officials told the justices in a new court filing.”

‘New Congressional map sets up a referendum on U.S. Rep. Scott Perry, again’: PennLive reports that “with Pennsylvania’s Congressional district lines established for the 2022 election cycle, it looks like U.S. Rep. Scott Perry is in a fight for his political life. Again.”

‘New congressional map makes Swiss cheese of Swissvale, complicating Pittsburgh primary’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “the Swissvale split, the only one in Allegheny County, put one announced Democratic congressional candidate — progressive state Rep. Summer Lee, D-Allegheny — in a competitive, suburban district and another — University of Pittsburgh law professor Jerry Dickinson — in the Pittsburgh-based seat. Both are Swissvale residents.”

‘New Pa. congressional map forces two Swissvale candidates into different districts’: Pittsburgh City Paper reports that “two of the Democratic candidates running for the seat of retiring U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Forest Hills) in District 18, state Rep. Summer Lee (D-Swissvale) and Jerry Dickinson, live in Swissvale. But the state’s new redistricting map has split the old District 18 into two new districts — District 12 and District 17. While Dickinson’s home is in the new District 12, which includes a bulk of the same area as the former 18th District, Lee’s home is in the new District 17.”

‘Meuser announces re-election bid’: The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader reports that “following earlier news of a new set of U.S. House maps for Pennsylvania, Rep. Dan Meuser, R-Dallas, announced a bid for re-election Wednesday.”

‘Joyce announces bid for Congress’: The Altoona Mirror reports that “U.S. Rep. John Joyce, R-13th District, has announced his bid for re-election in the newly drawn 13th District, which includes his home of Blair County and nearly 75% of his current constituents.” 

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

‘Johnny Doc, convicted in one trial and waiting on two more, gets a big retirement party’: Philly Clout reports that “former union leader John Dougherty’s retirement party will raise money to cover his wife’s medical bills, with tickets going for $200 each.”

‘Sharif Street won’t challenge fellow Philly Democrat Brendan Boyle for Congress’: Philly Clout reports that “Pennsylvania’s new congressional map is out and State Sen. Sharif Street, after mulling the new district lines for half-a-day, has decided against a primary challenge to U.S. Rep. Brendan Boyle, a fellow Philly Democrat.”

‘Kelly, U.S. House Republicans urge the Capitol reopening after pandemic, Jan. 6 concerns have kept it closed’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “just as fans are able to enjoy live music and sports, the public should be able to witness in-person “democracy in action,” argued Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Butler, in the latest letter urging officials to reopen the U.S. Capitol.” 

‘Toomey calls for oil and gas sanctions on Russia; experts differ’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “as the U.S. and allies on Thursday issued a cascade of further sanctions on Russian banks and wealthy elites as well as trade restrictions on advance tech, including the export of semiconductors from the West, the White House made clear that the penalties will not halt energy flowing from Russia to the global market. However, stopping that flow is the punishment that some, including Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., would like to see inflicted after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered Thursday’s deadly military attack on Ukraine.”

‘3 Pennsylvania Lawmakers Urge President Biden To Restart Construction Of Keystone XL Pipeline’: KDKA reports that “three state senators announced plans to introduce a resolution to urge President Joe Biden to restart the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.”

‘Pa. lawmaker introduces property tax elimination plan that would hike retirement, sales levies’: PennLive reports that “a state lawmaker has come up with a revised version of a plan he first introduced three years ago that would not only eliminate school property taxes but would make it illegal for a Pennsylvania school district to impose one.”

‘City & State’s 2022 Pennsylvania Transportation Summit focuses on improving movement’: City & State PA reports that “more than 120 attendees packed the Hilton Harrisburg on Wednesday for City & State’s 2022 Pennsylvania Transportation Summit, which featured public officials, government affairs professionals, and advocates discussing the state of Pennsylvania’s transportation systems and infrastructure – and how best to improve them.”

‘Pennsylvania State Police push back on panel recommendation requiring independent investigations when troopers kill, injure’: Spotlight PA reports that “independent investigations of deaths or injuries caused by Pennsylvania State Police would require a change to state law, the agency claims, rebuffing a recommendation by a state panel that would require an outside agency to investigate such cases.”

‘Pa. members of Congress urge harsh response to Russian invasion of Ukraine’: PennLive reports that “Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine early Wednesday amounts to “aggressive escalation in his efforts to upend international order, undermine democracy and amass power at all costs,” Democratic U.S Sen. Bob Casey said.”

‘War in Ukraine: What Pa. politicians have to say about it’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports on “how Pennsylvania’s elected leaders reacted to the news.”

‘Amid Ukraine invasion, 20 Pa. National Guardsmen heading to Lithuania this month for ‘routine training’’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “minus a single embassy official, no Pennsylvania National Guardsmen are in Lithuania amid growing tensions from the Russian invasion of Ukraine. However, 20 airmen and soldiers are scheduled to travel to Lithuania for “routine training engagements” later this month, National Guard Captain Travis Mueller said in an email Tuesday.”

‘Gov. Wolf cites ‘uplifting reality’ of nearly all adult residents having at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine’: PennLive reports that “about 95% of Pennsylvanians 18 or older have received at least one dose of COVID-19, the state said this week.”

‘PHEAA to trim its workforce by 43 employees’: PennLive reports that “the state’s student financial agency on Thursday advised 43 employees who work in its information technology area that March 11 will be their last day on the job.”

‘Rep. Susan Wild, Allentown Mayor Matt Tuerk talk inflation, labor shortage, affordable housing at joint town hall’: The Allentown Morning Call reports that “Lehigh Valley Congresswoman Susan Wild and Allentown Mayor Matt Tuerk discussed soaring prices, hiring woes and affordable housing at a joint town hall at Cedar Crest College on Wednesday night.”

‘Q&A: What the new Pa. congressional map means for you and the 2022 election’: The Allentown Morning Call reports that “the Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision on Wednesday broke a partisan deadlock over a new map of congressional districts by selecting boundaries that broadly adhere to the outlines of current districts.”

Legislative Election Updates

‘Jill Dennin announces bid for PA 24th Senate District’: The Pottstown Mercury reports that “former Boyertown Area School Board member Jill Dennin has announced her candidacy for the 24th state Senate District seat being vacated by Republican Bob Mensch, who is not seeking reelection.”

‘ER physician launches bid for swing-seat district in North Hills’: WESA reports that “Arvind Venkat is an emergency-room doctor who says he wants to go to Harrisburg — in hopes that he can practice some preventive care for a change.”

‘Lawncrest activist Miller running in 203rd district’: The Northeast Times reports that “a Lawncrest activist, Heather Miller, is seeking the Democratic nomination in the May 17 primary.”

Regional Spotlight: North by Northwest
Erie Times-News: Merski sees benefits for region as new chairman of Northwest Delegation
Centre Daily Times: How is Centre County growing? Why census numbers might not be clear, and a ‘recount’ might be ahead
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Lawmaker blasts Wolf, high spending
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Senator tours Bald Birds brewery
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: USDA rep. visits Jersey Shore with eye toward helping fund projects

Brendan Boyle: I saw in Brussels how NATO nations have united like never before against Putin 
John Baer: How Biden’s State of the Union address could impact Pa.’s 2022 Senate race 
Elizabeth Stelle: Examining Wolf’s revisionist history
Marc Stier: The GOP showed us who they are with challenge to Pa. House map 
John L. Micek: National report card gives Pa. a C-plus for its medical marijuana law | Thursday Morning Coffee
Gene Marks: Philadelphia continues stupefying war on small businesses
Inquirer Editorial Board: Russian invasion of Ukraine is an affront to democracy 
Inquirer Opinion Editors: Six Philadelphians reflect on Black History Month and their hopes for the future 
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: Being subpoenaed by the Jan. 6 committee should not be a ‘badge of honor’
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: Our thoughts are with the people of Ukraine, and those from Lancaster with ties there
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Ukraine crisis: American security demands economic independence from Russia, China
Joyce M. Davis: Good people in Carlisle find helping Afghan refugees really means helping themselves | Social View
Lloyd E. Sheaffer: As the pandemic loosens its grip, it’s time to reengage with the world
Zhenya Mykhailenko: I’m sheltering in my restaurant in Kyiv because I am going to fight for Ukraine 
Kenneth Finkel: Drexel is set to take over Philly’s historic artifacts. As a historian, I’m worried.

2 Responses

  1. Wolf Administration arguing to keep mail in ballots while the PA Supreme Court hears the case makes sense. Why Trumpers have decided it does not benefit them to have mail in ballots is hard to understand. First it was bamboo fibers Trumpers were worried about in the mail in ballots and now they fear fraud when there were very few fraud cases in fact if my memory is correct on case was a Republican voter. PA should encourage voting not discourage it by physically forcing people to go to the polls.

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