June 2nd Playbook

CNN rates Pennsylvania’s U.S. Senate seat as the most likely to flip in their latest 2022 ratings. Here is the Playbook. 

CNN: PA Senate Seat Stays as Most Likely To Flip In Latest 2022 Ratings: CNN’s Simone Pathe writes that “Trump loyalty is a salient factor in the GOP primary,” and despite Lt. Gov. John Fetterman’s fundraising advantage, “Republicans like their odds” against him.

Walsh To Visit PA on Wednesday: The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jonathan Tamari reports that U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh will visit Allentown, Bethlehem, and Wilkes-Barre on Wednesday to promote the American Jobs Plan.  

Wolf Promotes Charter School Reform in Lancaster County Visit: LNP | LancasterOnline reports that “Gov. Tom Wolf visited Lancaster County for the second time in less than a week on Tuesday, this time to promote his plan for reforming Pennsylvania’s charter school law, which Wolf called “the worst in the nation.”

Cutler Talks to City & State PA: House Speaker Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster) talked to City & State PA in a Q&A about election and lobbying reform. 

Three PA Republicans to Visit Arizona For GOP Partisan Audit of the 2020 Election: The Associated Press reports that GOP state Sens. Cris Dush and Doug Mastriano and GOP state Rep. Rob Kauffman will be in Arizona on Wednesday to “check out the state Senate GOP’s partisan audit of the 2020 election,” while adding that “They’re the latest Republicans to make a pilgrimage to Phoenix, Ground Zero in the “stop the steal” movement’s push to find support for the far-fetched conspiracy theories suggesting the election was stolen from former President Donald Trump.”

Philly Commissioners Won’t Count Undated Ballots: WHYY reports that “After clashing with Republicans and Democratic Governor Tom Wolf’s administration over a vote last week to count undated mail ballots submitted from May’s primary election, Philadelphia commissioners have suddenly reversed their decision.”

County Commissioners Call For Election Reform: PennLive reports that “County commissioners are urging Pennsylvania lawmakers to make changes to the state’s election code before the municipal elections in November,” and accused the General Assembly of “inaction” on election reform, during a news conference on Tuesday afternoon.

Philly City Council Proposes Anti-Violence Plan ‘Aimed at School-Aged Youth’: KYW Newsradio reports that on Tuesday, Philadelphia City Council members “introduced their own plan for combating violent crime, which calls for an increase in city spending to tackle the problem.” 

Muth Hires ‘Expert to Ensure Accountability at PSERS’: The Pottstown Mercury reports that state Sen. Katie Muth (D-Montgomery) has “retained national transparency law expert, Terry Mutchler, to assist with her ongoing battle on behalf of teachers and taxpayers to obtain basic information related to investment decisions that triggered a federal investigation into alleged wrongdoing by PSERS.”  

Shusterman Appointed to Workforce Development Board: The Pottstown Mercury reports that state Rep. Melissa Shusterman (D-Chester) “will serve on the Pennsylvania Workforce Development Board and help strengthen the commonwealth’s workforce.” 

Lamb Calls for Ending the Filibuster: In a thread of tweets on Saturday, Rep. Conor Lamb (D-Allegheny) said he believes that “the filibuster has to go,” while citing the Senate GOP blocking the creation of the Jan. 6 commission.

Fitzpatrick Talks to Fox News About COVID-19 Origins: Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Bucks) talked to Fox News in an interview about the “bipartisan push” into learning about the origins of COVID-19. 

Casey Talks About ‘Future of Democracy in a Broken Senate’ on MSNBC: Sen. Bob Casey talked to Rev. Al Sharpton on MSNBC about “the future of democracy in a broken Senate. January 6 commission, voting rights protections and gun control measures have yet to be addressed by most Senate Republicans.”

Former Congressman Bill Clinger Dies at 92: The Bradford Era reports that “Former Congressman William F. Clinger Jr., who represented McKean County and a large portion of central, north central and northwest Pennsylvania for 18 years, has died.”

Cappelletti Sponsors Bill To Allow Teenages to Get Vaccines Without Parents’ Consent: KDKA reports that state Sen. Amanda Cappelletti (D-Montgomery) is “writing a bill to allow anyone 14 and older to make their own decision about vaccines after talking with their family doctor or pediatrician.” 

Wild Hosts Town Hall Meeting in Northampton County: The Allentown Morning Call reports that Rep. Susan Wild (D-Lehigh) discussed “rise of warehouses, Jan. 6 commission in her first in-person event since the pandemic.” 

Benninghoff Talks About Pressuring Philly Election Officials on TalkRadio 1210 WPHT: House Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff (R-Centre) talked to TalkRadio 1210 WPHT’s Dom Giordano about the decision from Pennsylvania Republicans to “threaten the removal of two Democratic election officials in Philadelphia for counting mail-in ballots that had not been dated by voters.”

‘PA Cities Could See 15 New Train Round Trips As Part Of Amtrak Proposal’: Pittsburgh City Paper reports on Amtrak’s 2035 Vision plan and how Pennsylvania cities “could see 15 new train round trips as part of Amtrak proposal.” 

Part of Route 981 Will Be Renamed For Reese: The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that “A bill designating a section of Route 981 in Mt. Pleasant Township as the “Honorable Mike Reese Memorial Highway” was signed by Gov. Tom Wolf on Tuesday, according to State Rep. Ryan Warner. Reese, longtime representative of the 59th District, died Jan. 2 at the age of 42 from an apparent brain aneurysm. He had just been elected to a seventh term.”

Cumberland County Commissioners Approve Fiscal Budget: PennLive reports that “The Cumberland County Board of Commissioners approved the 2021-2022 fiscal budget. The total revenue in the fiscal budget is $57,865,075, which predominantly consists of Human Services funding, according to a press release.”

‘PA Lawmakers Discuss Plan to Keep R-Phils in Baseballtown’: WFMZ reports that  “State lawmakers and other sources told 69 News that Major League Baseball is requiring the Reading Phils to make significant upgrades to FirstEnergy Stadium,” and “If the upgrades don’t happen, MLB could force the team to relocate.”

Brown Named Chairwoman of State House Committee: According to a press release from House Republicans, state Rep. Rosemary Brown (R-Monroe) has been appointed to serve as the majority chairwoman of the House Urban Affairs Committee, for the remainder of the 2021-22 legislative session.  

Harrisburg & DC   
AP: Arizona GOP election audit draws Republican politicians
AP: Mail-in voting law spurring new tensions over elections
AP: DOJ settles with Pennsylvania city over language barrier
AP: Pennsylvania tax collections continue rebound from pandemic
Inquirer: PSERS bet big on this scrubs brand whose IPO boosted a Steelers owner’s billions
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. County Commissioners say they want lawmakers to finish key pieces of election reform before summer recess 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: ‘These folks are not Hannibal Lecter’: Push to reform Pa. second-degree murder statute continues 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Six Pa. State System universities could be consolidated. What to know ahead of four public meetings
USA Today: ‘The biggest defender’: Wolf’s legacy shows importance of 2022 Pa. governor’s race 
USA Today: What you need to know about Pa.’s unemployment compensation system going offline
USA Today: New COVID-19 cases plummet in Pennsylvania
York Daily Record: A fee for each mile driven? Hot lanes? PennDOT looks for solutions to funding shortage
Patriot News: Lt. Gov. Fetterman defies law to mark start of Pride Month 
Patriot News: Pa. county officials renew calls for election reform 
Patriot News: University of Pennsylvania to mandate COVID-19 vaccinations for faculty, staff 
Patriot News: COVID 19 cases dwindle in Pa.: Daily update 
Patriot News: Only 1 Pa. county has high spread of COVID-19, as statewide positive test rate drops to 3.8%
NBC10: Philly Lawmaker Pushing to Make Prison Copay Suspension Permanent
MSNBC: Sen. Bob Casey: Senate GOP holdouts are ‘impediments to change’
City & State PA: A Q&A with Pennsylvania House Speaker Bryan Cutler
City Paper: Pennsylvania cities could see 15 new train round trips as part of Amtrak proposal
Morning Call: Only two Pennsylvania state parks had to turn visitors away Monday due to overcrowding, DCNR says
Morning Call: Pennsylvania has lifted nearly all COVID-19 restrictions. What happens next
WITF: Pa. Haitian community hails temporary protected status, questions immigration future
NBC News: Bannon has his MAGA megaphone back. GOP candidates know it.
PLSReporter: Commissioners push for pre-canvassing, mail-in deadlines as legislature considers election overhaul
KYW Newsradio: Pennsylvania sets filing deadline before unemployment compensation system overhaul
KYW Newsradio: Sheetz will soon start accepting cryptocurrencies in stores and at the pump
StateImpactPA: Forecasters expect a busy 2021 Atlantic hurricane season
KDKA: Pa. Lawmakers Sponsors Bill That Would Allow Teenagers To Get Vaccines Without Parents’ Consent 
KDKA: Lt. Gov. John Fetterman’s LGBTQIA+ Pride Flags Taken Down From Office Balcony After He ‘Defies’ GOP
The Hill: Pennsylvania’s Fetterman says Republicans removed Pride flags from his office again
The Hill: DOJ settles with Pennsylvania city over language barriers to Spanish-speaking residents
Philly Voice: Pa. ramps up fight against spotted lanternflies as insects begin hatching across region
WTAE: Lt. Gov. John Fetterman’s pride flags removed from his office hours after they were hung up
CNN: Pelosi floats Democrat-led probe into January 6 after GOP derails outside commission

WHYY Newsworks: In last-minute reversal, Philly commissioners won’t count undated ballots 
WHYY Newsworks: ‘We have no time to waste’: City lawmakers call for more funding for anti-violence efforts 
WHYY Newsworks: ‘We’re ready when you’re ready’: SEPTA invites riders to return as Philly reopens 
WHYY Newsworks: Pa. coronavirus update: Penn mandates vaccine for all staff, faculty, and doctoral trainees
Inquirer: Philly elections officials reverse course and reject undated mail ballots amid impeachment threat
Inquirer: Councilmembers to Kenney administration: Proposed gun-violence budget isn’t enough 
Inquirer: After a year of COVID-19 restrictions, criminal trials are the final step in restoring Philly-area courthouses to full capacity
Inquirer: How the teargassing on 676 changed protesters who were there
KYW Newsradio: City Council proposes its own anti-violence plan aimed at school-aged youth
KYW Newsradio: Half of Philadelphia adults now fully vaccinated, says Health Department
KYW Newsradio: Penn to require COVID-19 vaccines for all faculty, staff
KYW Newsradio: As Philly ends most COVID-19 restrictions, Sixers may see a packed house for the playoffs
Billy Penn: How ‘Mare of Easttown’ turned the Philly region into a national obsession
Billy Penn: Philly is closing the city’s only rec center designed for people with disabilities
Philadelphia Business Journal: Philadelphia businesses are free of Covid-19 restrictions as city lifts mitigation measures
Philadelphia Business Journal: Dana Loesch to air on 1210 WPHT, but Audacy has other plans for Rush Limbaugh’s time slot

Pottstown Mercury: Sen. Muth hires expert to ensure accountability at PSERS
Pottstown Mercury: Rep. Shusterman appointed to Workforce Development Board
Daily Local News: Mariner East 2 pipeline in West Goshen develops small leak; evacuations not ordered 
Daily Local News: With gun sales at record levels, and mass shootings on the rise, a local group is promoting common sense 
Daily Local News: Chester County survey reveals pandemic confidence level returning 
Daily Local News: Juneteenth weekly celebration coming to Phoenixville
Montgomery Media: Coronavirus positivity rate continues to drop in SE Pa. 
Montgomery Media: Montgomery County records 78 new coronavirus cases, 1 death over 4 days
Broad + Liberty: Delco Council pays 41% over advertised price for new office space

KDKA: Pittsburgh Region Gains Nearly 150,000 Jobs Since Height Of Pandemic Lockdown
KDKA: Survey Hopes To Help Pennsylvania School Districts With Internet Availability
KDKA: Mayor Bill Peduto, Allegheny Co. Exec. Rich Fitzgerald Participate In Memorial Day Service
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: Allegheny Co. Health Dept. Reports No New COVID-19 Related Deaths In 3 Days
Post-Gazette: The Latest | COVID-19: As the numbers continue to fall, Pa.’s positivity rate now below 4%
Tribune Review: Allegheny County covid case average hits lowest mark since last June
WESA: State Legislators Seem Eager To Finish The Mon-Fayette Expressway

Tribune Review: It’s official: Part of Route 981 to be renamed for late state Rep. Mike Reese
Altoona Mirror: PSU policy addressing gender inclusion gets mixed reaction
KDKA: Section Of Route 981 To Be Renamed ‘Honorable Mike Reese Memorial Highway’
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Weekend drop in COVID-19 cases brings average below 1,000 cases a day 
Observer-Reporter: No COVID-19 deaths in Washington, Fayette, Greene counties over holiday weekend

Times-Tribune: City seeks to save by borrowing at lower interest rate 
Times-Tribune: COVID-19 cases continue to point down as NEPA records 24 new cases
Citizens Voice: Process to select new county manager will start soon 
Citizens Voice: 9 more COVID-19 cases reported in Luzerne County
The Times Leader: 9 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Luzerne County on Tuesday

South Central 
LNP | LancasterOnline: Wolf calls Pa.’s charter school laws ‘the worst in the nation;’ touts his own proposal outside McCaskey 
LNP | LancasterOnline: Lancaster County remains 16,000 jobs short of pre-pandemic strength, state figures show 
Patriot News: Cumberland County commissioners approve 2021-22 fiscal budget 
Patriot News: Cumberland County judge facing misconduct allegations over courtroom outbursts resigns
Carlisle Sentinel: Placey steps down from bench as part of disciplinary case 
Carlisle Sentinel: DOH: 14 new COVID-19 cases for Cumberland County Tuesday

Lehigh Valley      
Morning Call: Rep. Susan Wild addresses rise of warehouses, Jan. 6 commission in her first in-person event since the pandemic
Reading Eagle: Winner emerges in Reading district judge race that was too close to call
Reading Eagle: Elected officials pledge to find funding for Fightin Phils stadium in Reading
Reading Eagle: Berks County elections officials complete unofficial 2021 primary election vote tally 
Reading Eagle: Berks County’s Do Your Part initiative to combat COVID earns national achievement award
Reading Eagle: Berks County commissioners consider more ways to engage with the community
Reading Eagle: Berks County District Attorney John Adams joins call to prevent lead poisoning in Berks County and Reading 
Reading Eagle: Berks County adds 68 new COVID cases over 3-day period
WFMZ: Pa. lawmakers discuss plan to keep R-Phils in Baseballtown
WFMZ: Gov. Wolf grants new funding to Berks County Industrial Development Authority
WFMZ: Child lead poisoning investigated in Berks Co. 
WFMZ: Major League Baseball wants upgrades made to keep Fightin Phils in Reading

North by Northwest
Bradford Era: Bill Clinger, former congressman, Warren native, dies at 92
Centre Daily Times: Penns Valley resident Robert Zeigler announces plans to run for Jake Corman’s PA Senate seat
Centre Daily Times: ‘There’s joy in Happy Valley today.’ State College businesses react to full capacity at Beaver Stadium
Centre Daily Times: Get vaccinated and win $1,000: Penn State announces weekly incentives for COVID-19 vaccines
Post-Gazette: Hey, Penn State students and employees: Need an extra $1,000? Get vaccinated against COVID-19
Erie Times-News: Ex-Erie City Council President Arrington’s fraud netted $100K. She must repay only $31K
Erie Times-News: Erie County Department of Health’s Melissa Lyon: COVID-19 is ‘manageable’ in county

Bob Casey: LEAD initiative will reform the way police interact with people with disabilities
Ben Sanchez and Mike Zabel: Why Pa. needs a ‘Red Flag’ law: 72 hours could save your life 
Paul Muschick: How Pennsylvania’s failure to increase dog license fees is biting taxpayers
Salena Zito: There are deep roots in these mountains
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: The pandemic pushed EMS services into the red — it’s up to local leaders to help them regain solvency 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: College athletes should be compensated for use of their names, images
York Dispatch Editorial Board: By opting out of French Open, Osaka makes right call for herself and her sport
Jonathan H. Feinberg and Lauren Bonds: Police reform cannot be fully realized until we eliminate qualified immunity
John L. Micek: Data: Black people in Pa. are more than 5 times as likely as whites to be killed by police | Tuesday Morning Coffee
John L. Micek: These are the best and worst places in the U.S. to raise a family. How’d Pa. do? | Wednesday Morning Coffee
Jon Geeting: What Can Philly Learn From NYC’s Mayor’s Race? 
Michael Coard: Tulsa Massacre at 100: A lesson in Black bravery and resilience 
Chris Freind: Philadelphians are content with mediocrity, murder and malaise
George Heitmann: Why it’s increasingly difficult to get to the truth
Gene Therapy: Time for the return of interminable, torturous Benghazi-style hearings in Congress
Tony Norman: Grand-slamming the French Open
the Revs. Taylor Pfaff and Kris Sledge: Thanks to the volunteers who showed up to help Harrisburg students continue learning through COVID-19
Molly Eichel: I should be happy regular COVID-19 briefings are ending, but this return to normalcy is bittersweet
Hyeonock Lee: After a year of increased anti-Asian hate, I finally feel some hope
Jill Maderer: Philly rabbi: My empathy for Palestinians does not diminish my devotion to Judaism
Cameron Adamez: Grocery worker: Please keep wearing your mask in stores, for my safety

3 Responses

  1. Nearly two years is a long time till the 2022 election. Republicans are going too Trump that can only serve to fuel Dems. Going too Trump is a mistake as PA is not Alabama. The more Trump the R’s go the more likely the Dems flip the Senate seat.

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