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June 27: It’s Debate Night

Donald Trump and Joe Biden debate

🎙️ Good Thursday Morning! It’s a showdown in the ATL as Biden and Trump square off on the debate stage tonight.

PA Weather
☀️ Natrona Heights | Sunny, 79
🌤️ Carroll Valley | Becoming Sunny, 86
🌤️ Plymouth Meeting | Becoming Sunny, 87

PA Sports
⚾ Phillies (53-27) | Detroit 6-2 | Thu-Sun vs. Miami
⚾ Pirates (39-41) | Cincinnati 6-1 | Fri-Sun vs. Atlanta

🗓️ What’s Happening Today. The House and Senate convene at 11 AM.

🎂 Happy Birthday. Cake and candles for former Rep. Conor Lamb.

🗞️ Today’s Headlines >> Your Inbox. Where can you find all the latest news on what’s happening in Keystone State politics? Sign up for the PoliticsPA Playbook. We’ll deliver all the latest headlines in an easy-to-read format every weekday at 8 AM. And it’s free. Add your name to the list and subscribe now.


Top Story

1. Pennsylvania Will Be On Their Minds When Biden, Trump Debate Thursday

Joe Biden, Donald Trump

President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump have been in a dead heat for months in Pennsylvania. Can Thursday’s debate enable one of the presidential candidates to pull ahead?

While the entire nation will be tuning in, the candidates will aim at a small sliver of undecided voters in Pennsylvania and the other battleground states that will determine the outcome in November.” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)


Campaigns Prepare For Thursday’s Presidential Debate. “It does not have a title (Arguing in the ATL?) but Thursday’s presidential debate between President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump shapes up as a pivotal moment in what promises to be a slugfest for the White House.” (PoliticsPA)

  • How Will You Be Watching The Debate? (PoliticsPA)
  • What Keystone State Voters Can Expect From The Historic Presidential Debate. (WHYY)
  • Why the Debate Is Not the Most Important Thing in the World, According to the Campaigns That Agreed to It. (NOTUS)


Trump and Biden Are Tied In PA, But Past Polls Underestimated The Former President’s Appeal. “Pennsylvania is the only swing state where Biden and Trump are tied, according to a new analysis of poll results.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)

PA Latino Voters Speak Out On Immigration, Border Issues. “Latino/a voters in Pennsylvania in the survey prefer President Joe Biden over former President Donald Trump on immigration by seven points (39-32%) – a difference that is smaller than Nevada’s 19-point separation.” (PoliticsPA)



2. McCormick ‘Pro-Family’ Plan Includes Support For IVF, School Vouchers, Teen Social Media Ban

Dave McCormick

“Standing in front of a sign that read, “Strengthening Pennsylvania Families,” Republican U.S. Senate candidate David McCormick announced his campaign’s “pro-family agenda” in a visit to Delaware County on Wednesday. He laid out a plan that supports in-vitro fertilization (IVF), school vouchers, and social media bans for minors.

McCormick said legislation is needed to make contraceptives more accessible and more affordable, adding that he supports providing families with a $15,000 tax credit for fertility services like IVF.” (Penn Capital-Star)


Top Senate GOP Super PAC Drops Major Ad Buy to Boost McCormick in Pennsylvania. “The Senate Leadership Fund, a group with close ties to Mitch McConnell, is laying down a massive $24 million ad buy to help Republican Dave McCormick in his bid to unseat incumbent Bob Casey.” (POLITICO)

Here’s Where the House GOP is Spending This Fall. “Thirteen of the 22 districts are held by Democrats, according to the National Republican Congressional Committee, signaling a primarily offensive posture. And more than a quarter of the total spending will be marshaled against the five Democrats in districts that then-President Donald Trump won in 2020, including Matt Cartwright in Pennsylvania. Other top Democratic targets that will have major reservations placed against them: Reps. Susan Wild of Pennsylvania.” (POLITICO)

Why Democrats Think Abortion Will Help Them Win Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick’s Seat, Even Though It Wasn’t Enough Last Time. “In a rematch against Fitzpatrick, Ashley Ehasz is focusing on the incumbent’s record on abortion.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)


Around The Commonwealth

3. Capital Numbers Games

Harrisburg Capitol Steps

“If there’s one predictable thing about Pennsylvania’s yearly state budget negotiations, it’s that the process of developing and finalizing a state budget is entirely unpredictable.

Take last year’s state budget, for example. It took until December – six months after the state’s summer budget deadline – for lawmakers and the governor to finalize the last-remaining pieces of the budget.” (City & State)


Division Over School Vouchers Muddies Education Spending In PA Budget Talks. “While Pennsylvania’s school voucher proposal is targeted to the 15% worst performing schools many of which serve a majority or near majority of Black and brown students, many Black or brown legislators and others who represent them stand opposed to vouchers.” (PennLive)

Philly Can Enforce Its Ban On Casino-Style ‘Skill Games’ In Convenience Stores. “It remains unclear what the fate of the machines will be because state lawmakers and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court are considering taking action on the so-far-unregulated industry.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Controller Says Allegheny County Is In Financial Trouble, Much Like City and Schools. “Allegheny County may not be immune to the financial turmoil that is shaking the balance sheets of the City of Pittsburgh and Pittsburgh Public Schools, according to a report released by County Controller Corey O’Connor on Wednesday.” (Public Source)

Allentown City Council Votes to Sue Mayor to Stop ‘Obstruction’ of Investigation. “Allentown City Council voted 6-1 Wednesday to expend up to $20,000 to hire counsel to take legal action against Mayor Matt Tuerk to enforce an agreement and stop what it describes as obstruction of an investigation into the administration.” (CNHI News)

Former Scranton Mayor Jim Connors Dies Suddenly at Age 77. “Undoubtedly, Jim Connors loved the spotlight. As Scranton’s mayor for a dozen years, a tenure that spanned the 1990s, Connors, who died suddenly of natural causes at age 77 at home early Wednesday morning, regularly called into radio talk shows to get out whatever message or point of view that needed getting out.” (WVIA)



4. What’s On Your Mind

  • By Decrying The Dangers Of Guns, The Surgeon General Takes A Fraught, But Necessary Step To Save Lives. (Philadelphia Inquirer)
  • We Can’t Trust The State With Our City’s Future. (Ruth Ann Dailey)
  • George Washington Warned Us About Despots Who Don’t Like Democracy. (Daniel O. Jamison)
  • CNN Has The Spotlight For The Presidential Debate, But Can It Stand The Heat? (Jeffrey M. McCall)
  • Republicans Learned The Wrong Lesson From Tuesday’s Primaries. (Seth Higgins)
  • Is The Latino Vote in Play in PA? (John Hinshaw)


1 Thing

5. Hoagie Day 2024

Wawa Hoagie Day - Wawa Welcome America

“Philadelphia is celebrating hoagies in all their glory.

Why it matters: Welcome America’s Hoagie Day is giving away 7 tons of free turkey sammies this afternoon.

Driving the news: The annual event will be set up in front of the National Constitution Center on Arch Street between 5th and 6th Streets. 15,000 hoagies are available starting at noon.” (Axios Philadelphia)


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One Response

  1. No sane, intelligent voter needs to watch the debate tonight to know Trump is not fit for office.

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  • 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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