July 26th Playbook
President Joe Biden will visit the Lehigh Valley on Wednesday. Here is the Playbook.
July 23rd Ups and Downs: A Delaware County Democrat is charged with theft and will resign from the state House, one county’s voting machines are decertified, plus the state broke a new record for gambling revenue. All of that and more are in this week’s Ups and Downs.
Reader Poll: Who Should Republicans Nominate for U.S. Senate in 2022?: The Republican Party race to succeed Sen. Pat Toomey is well underway, although the field is still forming.
‘Pa. lawmaker resigns amid theft charges but likely will keep her taxpayer-funded pension and health benefits’: PennLive reports that state Rep. Margo Davidson (D-Delaware) “charged on Thursday with misusing thousands of dollars from her campaign and legislative accounts resigned Friday from the House of Representatives seat she has held for the past 10 years… The resignation took effect immediately, according to a statement from Cutler. That ends her ability to collect on the $90,335-a-year salary paid to rank-and-file lawmakers. However, it appears likely she will retain her taxpayer-provided health benefits and pension from her legislative service.”
‘‘We’re about to expose it’: How the stolen election myth took hold on Philadelphia’s Main Line’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “Kathy Barnette’s hunt for election fraud has rippled across the American election denial movement and made her a GOP contender for Senate in Pennsylvania.”
‘Pa. Republicans see a big opportunity in 2022. But some are worried their candidates might blow it.’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “much of the worry comes from the Philadelphia region, where the party is driven by a more pre-Trump establishment.”
‘John Fetterman, speaking to Texas Democrats, slams voter ID laws and calls electoral fraud ‘fiction’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “speaking to state House Democrats in Texas who recently fled their state to stall GOP voting legislation that they said amounted to voter suppression, Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman said Friday that the idea of voter fraud is a “fiction” and is being used by Republicans to disguise suppressive laws.”
Arkoosh Talks to ABC27: Montgomery County Commissioner Val Arkoosh, who is seeking the Democratic Party nomination for U.S. Senate in 2022, joined This Week in Pennsylvania on ABC27 hosted by Dennis Owens for an interview.
Sands Talks to ABC27: Carla Sands, former U.S. Ambassador to Denmark who is seeking the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate in 2022, joined This Week in Pennsylvania on ABC27 hosted by Dennis Owens for an interview.
‘GOP officials decry order to yank vote machines over ‘audit’: The Associated Press reports that “Republican elected officials from a small, rural Pennsylvania county urged state officials Friday to reconsider a decision to require new voting machines because a software firm was allowed to inspect the equipment after the election.”
‘Sen. Toomey: ‘Totally open’ to examining infrastructure deal once it’s written’: Sen. Pat Toomey joined Jake Tapper on CNN’s State of the Union on Sunday to “discuss the ongoing infrastructure negotiations in Congress.”
‘‘This is not about politics’: Pa. GOP lawmakers accuse Department of State of intimidation tactics’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports “If you’re afraid of transparency, you’re part of the problem,” Sen. Doug Mastriano, who has repeated baseless claims of a rigged election, said Friday outside of the Fulton County courthouse.”
‘Republicans recommend Manetti to run for 113th state House District seat’: The Scranton Times-Tribune reports that “Lackawanna County Republican Party committee members of the 113th Legislative District on Saturday recommended Dominick Manetti over five other candidates to run in a November special election to fill former state Rep. Marty Flynn’s seat, party Chairman Lance Stange Jr. said.”
‘Casey introduces legislation to renew job creation’: The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader reports that Sen. Bob Casey “this week is introducing the Restore Environmental Vitality and Improve Volatile Economy by the Civilian Conservation Corps of 2021, or the REVIVE the CCC Act (S.2414), which would revitalize the 1930s-era Civilian Conservation Corps into a modern-day employment, job training and conservation program.”
‘Sen. Bob Casey Visits Pittsburgh, Talks Infrastructure Bill’: KDKA reports that Sen. Bob Casey “came to Pittsburgh Friday to promote his efforts battling child hunger. It’s part of his Five Freedoms for America’s Children: freedom to be healthy, freedom to be economically secure, freedom to learn, freedom from hunger, and freedom to be safe from harm.”
‘Republicans rally at Cannstatter’s’: The Northeast Times reports that the Philadelphia Republican City Committee “welcomed statewide candidates to its first Great American Family BBQ, at Cannstatter’s. The fundraiser replaces the annual clambake.” Sean Parnell, an author and veteran who is seeking the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate in 2022, was the guest speaker.
‘US Rep. Evans urges federal aid, city action for Philly gun violence crisis in letters’: KYW Newsradio reports that “in a letter to President Biden, U.S. Rep. Dwight Evans of the 3rd Congressional District said, in his four decades of serving local neighborhoods, he has yet to witness a challenge more devastating than the current gun violence epidemic.”
‘Philadelphia community leaders demand action on gun violence from Kenney’: KYW Newsradio reports that Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney “may say there is no greater priority for his administration than reducing violence and saving lives, but city and community leaders are calling on him to do more about it.”
Kane Talks to Delaware Valley Journal: State Sen. John Kane (D-Delaware) talked to the Delaware Valley Journal in a Q & A about “balancing blue collar values in white collar district.”
‘Sanguedolce lone applicant for GOP nod in DA race; Dems still seek candidate’: The Citizens Voice reports that “incumbent Sam Sanguedolce is the lone applicant for the Luzerne County Republican Party’s nod for district attorney in the Nov. 2” election.
‘Infuriated by IRS, Rep. Kelly fights calls to bolster tax collection as way to fund infrastructure’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Butler), “a top member of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, has joined other Republicans in objecting to proposals from President Joe Biden and Congressional Democrats to provide $80 billion over 10 years to the IRS as a way to pay for a bipartisan infrastructure package currently under negotiation.”
‘The Highs and Lows for Philly Public Figures During a Really Tough Year’: Philadelphia Magazine highlights the “highs and lows for Philly Public Figures during a really tough year.”
‘Philly health officials now recommend masks indoors. Are the city’s businesses ready?’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “the return of mask guidelines took some by surprise. Others said it was worth doing because wearing masks would prevent infections and save lives.”
‘Wilkes-Barre official seeks passenger rail study’: The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader reports that “buoyed by a proposed Amtrak route between Reading and Philadelphia, City Controller Darren Snyder again lobbied for a study on a Wilkes-Barre high-speed rail connection.”
‘Rep. Fred Keller to hold call-in town hall’: The Williamsport Sun-Gazette reports that Rep. Fred Keller (R-Snyder) will be holding a telephone town hall meeting on Monday evening.
‘Debate over critical race theory has reached a critical point in America’: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that “the conversation at North Allegheny is similar to those happening across the country as the decades-old academic framework of critical race theory mostly taught in law school has recently become a hotly debated issue in K-12 school districts.”
‘School board meetings turn tense with debates over critical race theory and masking’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “the discord is raising the stakes for school boards already facing pressure over decisions on pandemic schooling. And some predict it may only get worse.”
‘Philadelphia tax revenue is up, but concerns linger about future finances’: WHYY reports that “the city of Philadelphia is seeing an uptick in tax revenue. A fiscal overseer is hopeful the increases will continue in the upcoming months, but remains cautious in his optimism.”
Bartos Campaigns with Keller: Jeff Bartos, a Montgomery County real estate developer who was the GOP Lt. Governor nominee in 2018 and is seeking the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate, campaigned with Congressman Fred Keller (R-Snyder) on Friday, touring two businesses in Snyder and Union counties before attending the Lycoming County Fair.
Chermak Endorses Bartos: Lackawanna County GOP Commissioner Chris Chermak endorsed Jeff Bartos for U.S. Senate over the weekend.
Lewis Appointed to Serve on National Conference of State Legislatures’ National Education Committee: According to a press release from state House Republicans, state Rep. Andrew Lewis (R-Dauphin) was appointed to serve on the National Conference of State Legislatures’ (NCSL) Education Committee, which is “one of 10 national committees that deal with both state and state-federal issues.”
Arkoosh to Campaign in SEPA: Montgomery County Commissioner Val Arkoosh, who is seeking the Democratic Party nomination for U.S. Senate, will be campaigning in Bucks County, Delaware County, and Philadelphia today as a part of her “Commonwealth Conversations” tour.
Whistle To Work As Legislative Assistant for Casey: POLITICO reports that Wesley Whistle will be the legislative assistant for Sen. Bob Casey, “focused on education and workforce issues.” Whistle most recently has been “senior adviser for policy and strategy at New America.”
Harrisburg & DC
Spotlight PA: Pa. GOP strategist running for governor being investigated for fatal crash on Turnpike
AP: Candidate for governor says he did not cause fatal accident
AP: GOP officials decry order to yank vote machines over ‘audit’
AP: Biden to bring infrastructure sales pitch to Pennsylvania
ABC27: This Week in Pennsylvania: July 25 Pt. 1
ABC27: This Week in Pennsylvania: July 25 Pt. 2
ABC27: This Week in Pennsylvania: July 25 Pt. 3
ABC27: This Week in Pennsylvania: July 25 Pt. 4
Inquirer: ‘We’re about to expose it’: How the stolen election myth took hold on Philadelphia’s Main Line
Inquirer: Pa. Republicans see a big opportunity in 2022. But some are worried their candidates might blow it.
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: ‘This is not about politics’: Pa. GOP lawmakers accuse Department of State of intimidation tactics
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pennsylvanians going for gold in Tokyo | Five for the Weekend
Post-Gazette: John Fetterman, speaking to Texas Democrats, slams voter ID laws and calls electoral fraud ‘fiction’
Post-Gazette: In ‘almost normal’ U.S. Capitol, lingering fault lines of pandemic and riot disrupts daily life
Patriot News: Pa. lawmaker resigns amid theft charges but likely will keep her taxpayer-funded pension and health benefits
Patriot News: Motorcyclist killed in PA Turnpike crash identified
Patriot News: Severe COVID-19 cases surging in Pa.: update
Morning Call: After Morning Call story on incorrect drug treatment center data, Pennsylvania to take down part of state website
Morning Call: Pennsylvania to take down part of website following Morning Call story on site’s conflicting data
WITF: Majority Of Americans Are Worried About The State Of Democracy, New Survey Finds
City & State PA: Telemedicine rose rapidly during COVID. It might be here to stay.
City & State PA: Studies show caring for older adults requires a holistic approach
Delaware Valley Journal: Bartos: Rural Roots, Suburban Appeal Make Me GOP’s Strongest Nominee
Delaware Valley Journal: Garrity, Shapiro Back Anti-BDS Action Against Ben & Jerry’s
KDKA: Pa. Lt. Gov. John Fetterman Calls Voter ID Requirements ‘Insidious And Unnecessary’
The Times Leader: Casey introduces legislation to renew job creation
Fox News: Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. says voter ID requirements ‘insidious’ in talk with fleeing Texas Dems
StateImpactPA: Parts of Pa. got hazy because of intense western wildfires. It could happen more often
USA Today: Election reform in Pennsylvania: Why Wolf says he hasn’t changed his stance on voter ID
USA Today: ‘More than celebrations, fireworks, parades’ as Pennsylvania prepares for 250th birthday
The Hill: Toomey: Jan. 6 investigation ‘is politically to the advantage of Democrats’
The Hill: DOJ won’t investigate nursing home deaths in New York, other states: letter
Delaware Valley Journal: PODCAST: Bartos Talks Senate Race, Update on Ben & Jerry’s Boycott
KYW Newsradio: Wolf administration officials boost mental health awareness efforts
KYW Newsradio: Pa. gubernatorial candidate Gerow investigated in fatal turnpike crash
KYW Newsradio: ‘If you’re trying to suppress the vote, I’m against it’: Wolf on new House election reform push
Philly Voice: Charlie Gerow, Pa. gubernatorial candidate, investigated for fatal Chester County crash
CNN: Sen. Toomey: ‘Totally open’ to examining infrastructure deal once it’s written
CNN: GOP senator warns against treating funding as ‘Monopoly money’ as infrastructure negotiations come to a head
CNN: Justice Department says it will not investigate Covid-19 nursing home deaths in several states
CNN: Trump loyalists echo false Arizona election fraud claims in hopes of winning midterms
Northeast Times: Republicans rally at Cannstatter’s
KYW Newsradio: US Rep. Evans urges federal aid, city action for Philly gun violence crisis in letters
KYW Newsradio: Philadelphia community leaders demand action on gun violence from Kenney
KYW Newsradio: Scabby the Rat is back: NLRB rules in favor of allowing its use at labor protests
WHYY Newsworks: Philadelphia tax revenue is up, but concerns linger about future finances
WHYY Newsworks: Biden’s child tax credit will spread wealth. But 13K Philly kids stand to miss out
Inquirer: Philly health officials now recommend masks indoors. Are the city’s businesses ready?
Philadelphia Magazine: The Highs and Lows for Philly Public Figures During a Really Tough Year
Billy Penn: One century ago, Philadelphia was ground zero in the battle to define free speech
Bucks County Courier Times: Bucks County approves $1.2 million in emergency housing funding for flood victims
Bucks County Courier Times: Bucks recoups over $426K from court cost repayment program
Bucks County Courier Times: ‘It is an absolute disgrace’: Bucks County commissioners criticize Purdue bankruptcy deal, opioid settlements
Inquirer: School board meetings turn tense with debates over critical race theory and masking
Delaware Valley Journal: Q & A: State Sen. John Kane on Balancing Blue Collar Values in White Collar District
Bucks Local News: In Bristol Borough, Governor Wolf touts $7M in COVID recovery grants to Bucks hospitality businesses
Pottstown Mercury: Road dispute leads to federal lawsuit for New Hanover
Pottstown Mercury: For Berks County and Pennsylvania, COVID cases, hospitalizations and vaccinations up
Delco Daily Times: Delco’s vaccination rate nears 70 percent
KDKA: Sen. Bob Casey Visits Pittsburgh, Talks Infrastructure Bill
KDKA: As Violence Continues To Spike On The South Side, Community Leaders Call For Change
KDKA: New Bronze Statue Of President Abraham Lincoln Dedicated In Wilkinsburg
KDKA: New Research From Carnegie Mellon University Could Help Autonomous Vehicles Travel Crowded Streets
KDKA: Commonwealth Court Upholds Shutdown Of Crack’d Egg Over Mask Mandate Violation
Post-Gazette: Debate over critical race theory has reached a critical point in America
Post-Gazette: Pittsburgh officials warn of ‘serious problems’ after violent night on South Side
Post-Gazette: Commonwealth Court upholds closing of Crack’d Egg for violating mask mandate
Post-Gazette: Cheswick coal-fired power station, last in Allegheny County, will stay open until April
Post-Gazette: ‘Forever Free’: New Abraham Lincoln statue unveiled in Wilkinsburg
Pittsburgh Business Times: Google contractor and USW reach tentative labor contract agreement
Pittsburgh Business Times: Q&A with U.S. Steel’s first chief sustainability officer
Tribune Review: Springdale Borough Council changes water rates, keeps Springdale Energy as customer
Tribune Review: Crack’d Egg loses appeal of closure order, plans to continue court fight
WTAE: Vaccinating Pennsylvania: Tracking vaccination rates, COVID-19 case data and updates
Observer-Reporter: Redistricting process about to get underway
Observer-Reporter: Snyder proposes legislation to fund high-speed internet
Observer-Reporter: Review committee blocks proposal for election audit
KDKA: Lawmakers And Physicians Concerned About Anti-Vaccination Signs In Greene County
Tribune Review: ‘Aging in place’: Westmoreland among tops in nation for natural population loss
Altoona Mirror: Hastings gets $2 million grant
Altoona Mirror: COVID-19 statistics slightly worse in area
Altoona Mirror: Tax sale registration rules changed
Beaver County Times: Coraopolis Water & Sewer Authority receives $1.1 million grant
Times-Tribune: Republicans recommend Manetti to run for 113th state House District seat
Times-Tribune: Officials: Time to see if Wilkes-Barre/Philly rail travel is feasible
Times-Tribune: Climate Justice Fair in Scranton urges grassroots environmental activism
Times-Tribune: Lackawanna ranks sixth in PA for animal cruelty and neglect court cases
Times-Tribune: State, NEPA COVID-19 case rates rising again, but well off peaks
Times-Tribune: NEPA adds 29 COVID-19 cases
Citizens Voice: Sanguedolce lone applicant for GOP nod in DA race; Dems still seek candidate
Citizens Voice: Officials: Time to see if Wilkes-Barre/Philly rail travel is feasible
Citizens Voice: Luzerne County ranks in top 10 for animal cruelty cases
Citizens Voice: 10 new COVID cases reported in Luzerne County on Sunday
The Times Leader: Wilkes-Barre official seeks passenger rail study
The Times Leader: Wilkes-Barre ZIP code gets most new cases as COVID-19 climbs
The Times Leader: 10 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Luzerne County Sunday; 557 statewide
LNP | LancasterOnline: Lancaster city’s leadership program empowers neighborhood leaders to make a difference
Carlisle Sentinel: DOH: 30 new COVID-19 cases reported in Cumberland County over weekend
Morning Call: President Joe Biden to visit Lehigh Valley manufacturer next week. Here’s why key swing area is hosting a lot of presidential visits these days.
Morning Call: Poll names government and politicians as Pennsylvania’s biggest problem, and there are plenty of reasons why
Morning Call: ‘It’s a hand up, not a handout’: How Lehigh Valley officials are working to get $847 million in rental assistance to those who need it
Morning Call: South Whitehall Township near end of 10-year saga recovering from $850,000 embezzlement scheme. How does this affect taxpayers?
WFMZ: Lehigh County controller announces bid against Pat Browne for state Senate
WFMZ: Some say Pa. law aimed at preventing animal cruelty needs better enforcement
WFMZ: President Biden coming to Lehigh Valley
WFMZ: Berks elections officials plan to build new election facility to store equipment, train workers
Reading Eagle: Berks woman chosen as Pa. advocate for caregivers to military veterans
Reading Eagle: Study finds drivers in Reading disregard city’s parking laws
Reading Eagle: For Berks County and Pennsylvania, COVID cases, hospitalizations and vaccinations up
Express Times: President Biden to visit Lehigh Valley to promote American products (UPDATE)
Express Times: Pa. weekly COVID update: Rate of new cases up 160% as Delta variant surges | See the hotspot map
North by Northwest
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Williamsport City Council to use federal funds to fight hunger
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Rep. Fred Keller to hold call-in town hall
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: City to seek $1.48 million state grant for ‘Gateway’
Post-Gazette: Infuriated by IRS, Rep. Kelly fights calls to bolster tax collection as way to fund infrastructure
Patriot News: Significant water damage to Williamsport City Hall may force offices to be relocated: mayor
Erie Times-News: Erie Water Works receives $6.5 million state grant to replace service connections
Erie Times-News: COVID-19 cases double in Erie County over past two weeks but still remain relatively low
Centre Daily Times: COVID-19 case totals have more than doubled during the past week in Centre County
Wendi Thomas: Public will have a say in Pennsylvania’s redistricting
Mark S. Singel: It’s time for good people across the nation to handle the truth
Larry Platt: Emergency? What Emergency?
Paul Muschick: Pennsylvania’s nursing home care mandate could backfire and put seniors in a worse position
Salena Zito: The American labor crisis has hit all the small businesses on this one street
Jeffrey Lord: Charlie Gerow Runs for Pennsylvania Governor
Chuck Ardo: I’m a child of Holocaust survivors. We have to stop our slide into totalitarianism
Arthur Garrison: Hitler’s rise and the Capitol mob – Lessons for America
Richard Craighead: York NAACP: Proposed city surveillance camera system would unfairly target people of color
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Pay the National Guard
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Package delivery fee could provide reliable transportation funding source
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Congressman should work with state transportation officials, not against them
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Common sense and voting rights
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: Failure of transparency on state unemployment accounting error made problem worse
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: In this pandemic, misinformation can be lethal. Please choose reliable sources.
PennLive Editorial Board: Kudos to the Pennsylvania Council of Churches for its “Get Vaccinated!” campaign
David Harrington: Pa.’s legal system sent me to adult jail as a child. Lawmakers should protect other children from that trauma.
Alison McCook: Thank you, Philly, for asking people to mask up indoors
Terrill Haigler: Ya Fav Trashman: Philadelphians deserve real leadership, not garbage everywhere
Adam Garber and Joel Wilson: Community groups haven’t heard a word about the gun violence prevention money promised in Philly’s new budget
Bethany Watson-Ostrowski: I was a COVID-19 vaccine skeptic. Now I want you to get your shot.
Carrie Anne Amann, MPA; and Jesse McCree: Here’s how to deal with the crisis of vacant jobs in Pennsylvania
David C. Wenger: Sen. Toomey should speak out to defend democracy
Alexander Prodes: Why do GOP State Senators oppose helping victims of clergy sexual abuse to obtain justice?
Ruth Ann Dailey: COVID-19 and the tale of 2 churches
Tony Norman: Should a CNN pundit with a $100 million charity keep his perch?
David M. Shribman: History is full of Americans hating each other
Michael Schnierle: Let’s call COVID the “Republican Virus”
Chris Kelly: Keep tax collection deal; flush high fee
Jenice Armstrong: Gun emergency or not, there are things we can do on our own to make neighborhoods safer
Keith C. Burris: The man who had it all
Amanda G Theodorson: We need to change the way we use plastic now!
Bill White: The pun by a bad writing winner takes a tern for the worse
John Cole: Also found at the edge of space | Editorial Cartoon
Don Webb: Have you no shame?
Ben Waxman: McGlinchey’s should ban smoking forever
Will Bunch: Merrick Garland’s elitist caution shows how Dems could become a minority party
Rob Tornoe: Political cartoon: The Olympics and COVID-19