July 24th Ups & Downs
A former state Senator is sentenced to prison on child pornography charges, a bill unanimously passes the state legislature, but still may face a veto, plus polling shows President Trump trailing former VP Joe Biden in PA. All of that and more are in this week’s Ups and Downs.
Every week PoliticsPA sends an exclusive extra Up or Down to Playbook subscribers. See who gets the extra up or down next week: sign up here.
Mike Folmer. The former Lebanon County state Senator was sentenced to 1-2 years in prison plus 8 years of probation after pleading guilty earlier this year to child pornography charges.
Bloomsburg Fair. One of the “state’s most popular fairs,” garnered a series of well deserved bad press over the weekend. The AP reports that the Bloomsburg Fair posted an image on its Facebook page of a man in a blond wig that was placed in a dunk tank at the fair with the following caption, “Dr. Levine? Thank you you were a hit and raised a lot of money for the local fire companies. Wonder why so many were trying to dunk you.” The now-deleted transphobic post received pushback from many in the commonwealth over targeting Sec. Rachel Levine, a trans woman.
Tom Wolf. The governor has prided himself as being a transparent public official, but his opposition to HB2463 seems to indicate otherwise. The Right-to-Know Law, which would require state agencies to follow the state’s Right-to-Know Law during declared emergencies, was unanimously passed by the state legislature, but Wolf has said he’d veto the legislation. If Wolf vetoed this bill, it would only be the first time since 1978 that a unanimously passed bill was vetoed by the governor, according to the PennLive Editorial Board.
Biden Senior Staffers. Former Vice President Joe Biden continued to staff up his PA operation this week by bringing in the following operatives to a number of senior positions in the campaign: Larry Hailsham Jr. as the state’s Political Director; Michael Feldman as the state’s Communications Director; Nandi O’Connor and the state’s Coordinated Digital Director; and Amy Dorra to serve as the Deputy Coordinated Political Director.
PennLive. The Harrisburg-based news outlet described a white nationalist/Neo Nazi rally in Williamsport as “peaceful.” The headline has been altered to eliminate the word “peaceful,” but not after the website was criticized from people all over the commonwealth. A Pittsburgh Steeler reporter for the paper, Jacob Klinger, even quit in protest over the headline.
Ozzie Meyers. The former Philadelphia congressman, who was convicted in the Abscam investigation in the 1970s, was charged on Thursday after “new allegations that he bribed a poll worker to stuff ballot boxes in local elections,” according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Donald Trump. Two polls released this week in Pennsylvania show the president has an uphill battle to capture the Keystone State again. Rasmussen Reports, which has been described as Trump’s “favorite pollster,” released a poll this week showing former VP Joe Biden leading President Donald Trump in the state by 3 points, 48-to-45. A Fox News poll released later in the week has Biden leading Trump by 11 points, 50-to-39, with the former VP extending his lead to 15 points, 55-to-40, among voters who are “extremely interested” in the presidential election.
Phillies Fans. PoliticsPA isn’t endorsing or condemning the decision made this week by the state to now allow the Toronto Blue Jays to play at PNC Park amid the coronavirus pandemic, we’re just saying that fans of the Philadelphia Phillies aren’t heartbroken over this decision like they were in 1993 when Joe Carter hit a walk-off homerun to clinch the World Series for the Blue Jays over the Phillies.
María Manautou Matos. Pittsburgh City Paper highlighted PRESENTE Pittsburgh Latino Magazine, an online Latinx culture magazine covering the Pittsburgh region that was launched earlier in 2020. Although the Latinx community in Allegheny County is small, City Paper reports that Latinos “appear to be the fastest” growing ethnic grow in the county. The work Manautou started is well worth highlighting as they provide coverage to a growing community in the region.
Jeanette Tait. The Luzerne County Board of Elections has a new chairwoman. On Wednesday, they appointed Tait, 71, a Democrat to the position which had been vacant since early June when former chairman Jose Adames resigned, according to the Citizens Voice.
TWEET OF THE WEEK
I aspire to one day reach the point of being my own Zoom background pic.twitter.com/jiv1LW6nSK
— Jonathan Lai 賴柏羽 (@Elaijuh) July 23, 2020