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January 5th Playbook

Republican leaders in the state Senate announce that they will not seat Sen. Jim Brewster, while other lawmakers are sworn-in on Tuesday. Here is the Playbook. 


Lamb Votes Against Pelosi for Speaker: Lamb once again cast a statement vote for a House colleague instead of his party’s incumbent House Speaker.

Owlett and Rothman Named to House Appropriations Committee: According to a release, State Reps. Clint Owlett (R-Tioga) and Greg Rothman (R-Cumberland) have been appointed to serve on the House Appropriations Commmittee. This will be the second legislative session that Owlett and Rothman have served on the committee. 

FairDistricts PA To Host Judicial Gerrymandering Town Hall: On Wednesday afternoon, Fair Districts PA, League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania and Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts will host a town hall about judicial districts and gerrymandering. 


Harrisburg & DC   
Spotlight PA: GOP leaders in Pa. Senate will refuse to seat Democrat certified by state as winner 
Spotlight PA: Election officials want a say in Pa.’s voting reforms, but politics may get in the way
AP: GOP to block Democrat from state Senate in mail ballot fight 
AP: Pennsylvania legislators to kick off session by taking oath
Patriot News: Pa. Senate GOP leader to delay seating an incumbent Democratic senator
Patriot News: 8 Pa. Congressmen, all Republicans, set to object to final certification of Joe Biden’s presidential win
Patriot News: 21 for 2021: Pennsylvania people to watch in the new year and beyond.
Patriot News: ‘It’s time to get Pa. rockin’ and rollin’ again’; Pa.’s House GOP leader looks ahead to new legislative session
Patriot News: Meet Pa. House GOP leader Kerry Benninghoff: Woodworker, history buff, knows how to make an impression
Patriot News: Democratic lawmakers seek moratorium on evictions, foreclosures when COVID-19 disaster ends
Patriot News: Ex-House Speaker John Perzel wins 3rd and likely final bid to avoid paying $1M for corruption conviction
Patriot News: ‘It will take months’ until COVID-19 vaccine available for everyone in Pa., Levine says
Patriot News: Which states have the most confirmed coronavirus cases (1/4/2021): Where does Pa. stand?
Patriot News: All 67 Pa. counties still show substantial spread of COVID-19; positive test rate dips for 3rd week
Patriot News: Pa. shows big drop in COVID-19 cases, but holiday likely clouded numbers
Patriot News: Acting U.S. Attorney appointed for Middle District of Pa.
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Dems float eviction moratorium plan: ‘We want people to live and thrive in their homes’ 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: After a slow start, Pa. Health Secretary Levine hopeful pace of COVID-19 vaccinations will increase in 2021 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. opens up grants to nonprofits, vulnerable to hate crimes, looking to shore up security | Tuesday Morning Coffee
USA Today: These Pa. congressmen will oppose Biden win
USA Today: Pa. Dems want to ban evictions, foreclosures  
WESA: Why Isn’t The PA Legislature More Productive? Some Say Unfair Rules Hold Lawmakers Back
Post-Gazette: State lawmakers introduce bill to extend eviction moratorium
PLSReporter: Senate GOP will not seat Brewster despite certified results  
PLSReporter: House Democrats name committee chairs for 2021-22 session 
PLSReporter: Democrats renew push for eviction moratorium extension as federal moratorium end draws near 
PLSReporter: Levine expects vaccine efforts to ramp up in 2021
WHYY Newsworks: Congress expected to certify Biden’s win this week — despite GOP push to subvert the vote
KYW Newsradio: Pennsylvania has administered fewer than half of its allocated COVID-19 vaccine doses
Inquirer: Who gets the COVID-19 vaccine next, and when? Pa. and N.J. are working on it.
Inquirer: The state lawmaker who died of an aneurysm had COVID-19, but were the two conditions related?
Politico: SCOOP: Inside the GOP’s strategy to challenge Biden’s win (and the nail biter GA election)
Billy Penn: Pennsylvania’s role in Trump allies’ doomed effort to disrupt Biden’s Electoral College win 
Billy Penn: Pa. gov website listing to burn ‘Trump 2024 flag’ actually isn’t unusual  


Inquirer: Daphne Goggins, a Philly activist who urged Black voters to join the GOP, dies from COVID-19
Inquirer: ‘Progress in society is cyclical’: Philly LGBTQ elders talk movement’s history, today’s parallels
Inquirer: COVID-19 vaccine could be crucial shield for cancer patients | Morning Newsletter
KYW Newsradio: Democratic lawmakers push to extend suspension on evictions, foreclosures in Pa. 
Philadelphia Business Journal: Philadelphia projects receive $110M in state development funding
WHYY Newsworks: ‘Should I have even gone to college?’: Why Philly borrowers want Biden to cancel student debt 
WHYY Newsworks: Pa. coronavirus update: With holidays over, vaccination effort expected to ramp up 


Daily Local News: Chester County: No plans yet on continued voting expansion 
Daily Local News: Rep. Houlahan: ‘We must crush this virus’
Delco Daily Times: Delaware County moves closer to its own health department
Delco Daily Times: Delaware County deaths approach 1,000 as vaccine rolls out
Bucks Local News: Bucks County Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick introduces sweeping reform package
Bucks Local News: ‘I WILL BE A JUDGE FOR OUR COMMUNITY:’ Tiffany Thomas-Smith announces candidacy for the Bucks County Court of Common Pleas
Bucks Local News: Bucks County COVID-19 Recovery Fund awards more than $395K to dozens of nonprofits
Bucks Local News: JAN. 3 BUCKS COUNTY COVID-19 UPDATE: Cases inch upward as short-term restrictions expire
Montgomery Media: Montgomery County sees increase in coronavirus positivity rate
Bucks County Courier Times: Coronavirus cases continue drop in Bucks County 
Bucks County Courier Times: Bristol Township district judge resigns


Post-Gazette: Jim Brewster’s Pa. Senate swearing-in will be delayed, top GOP senator says 
Post-Gazette: State lawmakers introduce bill to extend eviction moratorium
Post-Gazette: Pittsburgh homicides up in 2020, but scope of last decade shows it’s not a significant spike 
Post-Gazette: Could more changes be in store for Pennsylvania’s college students?
Post-Gazette: COVID-19 Update: Nearly 9,000 new cases reported in Pa.; Allegheny County reports 5 new deaths
WESA: Despite ‘Great Uncertainty,’ Mayor & County Executive Look To 2021 For Recovery 
KDKA: Pa. State Senator Jim Brewster’s Swearing In To Be Delayed Due To Fight Over Mail-In Ballots
KDKA: Local Lawmakers Proposing Legislation To Extend Pa. Eviction Moratorium 
KDKA: City Announces Operational Improvements To Snow Removal Procedures 
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: Allegheny Co. Health Dept. Reports 852 More Cases, 5 Additional Deaths
Tribune Review: Pa. Republicans to delay Sen. Brewster’s oath of office for ‘time to digest’ Ziccarrelli’s election dispute
Tribune Review: Uncounted ballots discovered among Westmoreland County voting equipment  
Tribune Review: Allegheny County reports 850 more covid cases, 5 deaths in 2 days


Beaver County Times: FairDistricts PA to host town hall on gerrymandering
Beaver County Times: Update to database causes uncertain COVID-19 data
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Pa. Republicans joining last-ditch election challenge 
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Somerset County approves raises for 2021, acknowledges COVID still biggest challenge heading into 2021 
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: DEP names new regional director for southwest Pa. 
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Daily COVID-19 numbers ‘abnormally low’ due to weekend computer work
Tribune Review: Neighbors, friends show signs of support for the late Rep. Mike Reese
Tribune Review: Latrobe mayor says she won’t run for a third term
Altoona Mirror: Mail ballot protections outlined
Altoona Mirror: Levine: Pa. needs to stay patient
Observer-Reporter: COVID-19 cases climb locally


The Times Leader: 3 area legislators named Democratic chairs of House committees
The Times Leader: Luzerne County Councilman Matthew Vough announces re-election bid
The Times Leader: Brooks named chairman, McBride vice chair of Wilkes-Barre City Council
The Times Leader: Bruce D. Brandler appointed acting U.S. Attorney for Pa. Middle District
The Times Leader: 44 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in county on Monday; deaths at 470
Times-Tribune: Mullery, Pashinski and Carroll named as Democratic committee chairs
Times-Tribune: Domenick to head Lackawanna County Board of Commissioners
Times-Tribune: Judge Trish Corbett becomes new president judge of county court
Times-Tribune: Brandler named acting U.S. attorney for Middle District
Citizens Voice: Mullery, Pashinski and Carroll named as Democratic committee chairs
Citizens Voice: Eight apply for county election director job 
Citizens Voice: Swoyersville mayor will not seek reelection 
Citizens Voice: Brooks seated as new Wilkes-Barre council chairman  
Citizens Voice: 44 new COVID-19 cases reported in Luzerne County 
Citizens Voice: Levine denies Pennsylvania trails other states in planning mass vaccinations


South Central   
York Dispatch: Perry, Smucker plan to object to Electoral College certification
York Dispatch: York County has nine new deaths linked to COVID-19
Carlisle Sentinel: Midstate legislators support rejecting election results as Toomey rebukes GOP colleagues for gambit
Carlisle Sentinel: Freed to join McNees after stepping down as federal attorney
Carlisle Sentinel: In the fight against COVID-19, Midstate health officials still emphasize the importance of testing
Carlisle Sentinel: Carlisle Mayor Tim Scott will not seek a third term
Carlisle Sentinel: DOH: Technical maintenance to data server skews numbers lower in Monday’s data; Cumberland County sees 120 new cases in two-day report
LNP | LancasterOnline: U.S. Rep. Lloyd Smucker will object to Pennsylvania’s electors, alongside other Pa. House Republicans
LNP | LancasterOnline: In a first, Black and Latino woman takes over as chair of Lancaster City Democratic Committee 
LNP | LancasterOnline: Lancaster County reports just 117 virus cases in 24 hours [Monday’s COVID-19 updates]
LNP | LancasterOnline: Local communities of color are reluctant to get COVID-19 vaccine; that worries Lancaster County health officials
York Daily Record: York County Judge Maria Musti Cook becomes first woman to serve as president judge
York Daily Record: Election 2021: York County Judge Craig Trebilcock will not seek retention in 2021
York Daily Record: Homicides in 2020: City of York sees decrease
Patriot News: Cumberland County commissioners celebrate life of Chief Clerk Sandy Moyle
Patriot News: Carlisle mayor will not seek third term


Lehigh Valley      
Morning Call: Allentown mayoral race: Who’s running, who isn’t and who’s still undecided
Morning Call: Newest Lehigh County Commissioner Jeffrey Dutt will run to keep his seat
Morning Call: Pennsylvania coronavirus update: More ICU beds becoming available; official says speed of vaccine rollout depends on how much state gets
Reading Eagle: Manuel Guzman Jr. sets his sights on progressive agenda for first term in Pa. House of Representatives
Reading Eagle: Reading passes updated parking ordinances geared to increase revenues and help residents
Reading Eagle: Berks County reports 15 new COVID deaths; 9 in a single day
Reading Eagle: Risk of community spread of COVID remains substantial in all Pennsylvania counties
WFMZ: Rep. Guzman aims to help Reading’s poor, working class
WFMZ: President of South Whitehall commissioners running for reelection
WFMZ: Flag-lowering ceremony honors former Easton City Council member
Express Times: Pa. coronavirus update: Maintenance issue blamed for low case count, big Tuesday increase expected; Vaccine rollout should speed up | Pa. COVID-19 county map (01/04/21) 


North by Northwest
Erie Times-News: Kelly’s claims fuel Mo. senator’s electoral objection
Erie Times-News: Kelly backs Trump in phone call over Georgia vote 
Erie Times-News: Two Erie City Council members seek 2021 presidency
Centre Daily Times: Where do Centre County’s representatives in Washington stand on the Electoral College vote?
Centre Daily Times: Jan. 4 update: Centre County adds 89 COVID-19 cases, 2 deaths over the holiday weekend
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Freshman representative eager to get to work in Harrisburg
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Councilwoman questions vacant director position
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Lycoming County 42 new COVID-19 cases. Clinton County sees 17 new cases, Tioga 8, Sullivan 1


Eric Wolfgang: Reform PA cyber charter authorization, funding
York Dispatch Editorial Board: Thwart GOP war against vote-by-mail
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Kudos to the Allegheny Land Trust 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Anti-competitive Google
Megan McDonough: Lt. Gov. John Fetterman should stand with East Pittsburgh against fracking 
Charlie Gerow: We can remake the GOP into the majority party of the new century
John Cordisco: How did Bucks reps’ names get on GOP letter?
Anna Perng and Jeff Le: Four ways to improve Philly’s COVID-19 vaccine plan 
Patrick DeLany: White House obstruction must cease
Tony Norman: Down for the count in Georgia
Charles D. Allen: In 2021: We have to keep working toward ending what MLK called ‘The Other America’
Adewole Adamson and Jules Lipoff: Penn must cut ties with Dr. Albert Kligman, who conducted unethical human research on Black men 
David Bradley: The Politics of Witch Hunting 
Roxanne Patel Shepelavy: 52 Small Ways To Make a Better Philly in 2021
Fletcher McClellan: America needs a smooth Trump-Biden handoff. It’s not going to get one. Why that matters

One Response

  1. Not seating Senator Brewster in a nonstarter. As hapless as the Pa State Senate Democratic Leadership has been the law resoundingly is on the side of the Democrats. Anyone with a simplistic knowledge of election law knows that the judiciary whether it be state or federal is very reluctant to get into the business of uncounting votes. For the Pa State Senate Republican Leadership to even suggest the federal court reverse the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania is egotistical and pompous but, most importantly, will go nowhere legally. Clearly, the Republican State Senate Leadership is trying to derail the will of the people in Senator Brewster’s district.

  • Reader Poll: Should President Joe Biden Step Aside?

    • Yes. He should step aside because of his age, declining ability to do the job. (45%)
    • No. He should not step aside. (39%)
    • Yes. He should step aside because he can't beat Donald Trump. (15%)

    Total Voters: 231

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