May 27th Playbook

The Cook Political Report’s latest ratings keeps Pennsylvania’s 2022 Governor’s race as a Toss Up. Here is the Playbook. 

Cook Keeps 2022 PA Governor Race As Toss Up in Latest Ratings: Pennsylvania remains as one of three states listed in the Toss Up column for the 2021 and 2022 cycle.

The Caucus Highlights the GOP PA Governor Primary: The Caucus reports that “Republicans are lining up for PA’s 2022 governor’s race. The key question is: Who will hold the Trump card?”

Inky Details Barletta’s Governor Campaign and Recent Visit to Philly: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that former Congressman Lou Barletta is “reintroducing himself to Pa. voters as he runs for governor after a rough 2018 campaign.” 

Spotlight PA: ‘Internal systemic failures’ led to Wolf administration blunder that derailed child sex abuse amendment’: Spotlight PA reports that “Internal systemic failures” were behind the Wolf administration’s bungling of a statewide referendum that would provide legal recourse to survivors of child sexual abuse, according to a much-anticipated report released Wednesday.”

Rossi Talks To City & State PA: Newly elected state Rep. Leslie Rossi, who is also the “Trump House” creator, talked to City & State PA in a Q&A about her run for office and the current state of GOP politics. 

Wolf Re-ups Calls For Minimum Wage Increase in Lancaster Visit: LNP | LancasterOnline reports that Gov. Tom Wolf “visited Lancaster city Wednesday morning to repeat his longstanding call to raise Pennsylvania’s minimum wage, the last state in the region to sit at the federal level of $7.25 an hour, which hasn’t been increased since 2009.”

State House Committee “Considers Bill to Abolish “Concealed Carry” Permits of Handgun Owners”: PennLive reports that state House Republicans “gave a first approval Tuesday to a bill that would end the state’s longstanding requirement of a separate license for all handgun owners to carry a concealed weapon on their person or in a car.” 

WHYY Details Education Advocates Push for Repurposing PA’s Horse-Racing Subsidy: WHYY reports that “Education advocates are demanding Pennsylvania lawmakers make a choice: students or horses. They want the state to cut subsidies to the horse-racing industry that top $230 million annually and redirect the funds to students and the State System of Higher Education.”

Senate Committee Holds First Public Hearing On Redistricting: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that Wednesday’s hearing was “the first step in planning how best to redraw Pennsylvania’s 17 congressional districts.”  

Pennsylvania Capital-Star: McClinton calls for safeguards against prison gerrymandering in Pa. legislative maps’: The Pennsylvania Capital-Star reports that “Potentially upsetting decades of precedent that has aided rural, white Pennsylvanians at the expense of Black, urban residents, House Minority Leader Joanna McClinton, D-Philadelphia, called for state legislators to change how they count prisoners during redistricting.”

Inky: ‘Philly will count undated mail ballots the Pa. Supreme Court said should be thrown out’: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that “Philadelphia elections officials will count mail ballots from last week’s primary election that arrived in envelopes without dates, despite a Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling that undated ballots be rejected.”

PA Drops Legal Action Against Restaurants Over COVID-19 Protocols: The Associated Press reports that “The Pennsylvania Department of Health has dropped its legal action against more than 40 restaurants that were accused of defying state orders to close indoor dining and maintain social-distancing protocols.” 

Inky: Fumo “Loses Legal Round in Long-Running Tax Battle Over His Abuse Of South Philly Nonprofit”: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that former state Sen Vincent Fumo (D-Philadelphia) “has suffered a blow in a years-long and seemingly slow-motion tax fight with the IRS that lingers from his 2009 corruption conviction,” after a U.S. Tax Court judge ruled that “the IRS can keep pursuing Fumo, 78, for hundreds of thousands of dollars in excise taxes related to his defrauding of a former South Philly nonprofit known as Citizens Alliance for Better Neighborhoods.”

State House Passes Bills That Would “Stiffen Penalties for Human Trafficking”: KYW Newsradio reports that the state House “passed a series of bills Wednesday aimed at cracking down on human trafficking.” 

Yudichak’s Tax Credit Bills Pass Senate Finance Committee: The Wilkes-Barre Times Leader reports that the state Senate Finance Committee approved two bills, Senate Bill 681 and Senate Bill 682, “authored by” state Sen. John Yudichak’s (I-Luzerne) “that will help businesses recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Moreno Considers Accepting GOP Nomination for Pittsburgh Mayor: KDKA reports that Tony Moreno, a retired police officer who launched an unsuccessful campaign for Pittsburgh Mayor in last week’s Democratic Party primary, is considering accepting the Republican Party nomination for Mayor. 

Meuser Talks To Fox Business About Infrastructure Plans: Rep. Dan Meuser (R-Luzerne) talked to Fox Business’ Neil Cavuto about infrastructure proposals and President Joe Biden’s spending plans.

Tribune Review: ‘Green Party candidate hopes to shake up Pittsburgh council’: The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that Connor Mulvaney, a Green Party candidate seeking the seat held by Pittsburgh City Councilman Anthony Coghill, “is hoping to capitalize on a progressive movement that propelled state Rep. Ed Gainey to a win over Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto last week.”

Dunbar Faces Additional Charges: The Philadelphia Business Journal reports that former Philadelphia City Treasurer Christian Dunbar, who is “already facing federal charges for bank embezzlement and immigration fraud,” has been “indicted on tax offenses.” 

Times-Tribune: ‘Local legislators, educators express support for Biden’s American Families Plan’: The Scranton Times-Tribune reports that Northeast PA Democrats touted their support for President Joe Biden’s proposed American Families Plan on Wednesday. 

Franklin County Police Departments To Have Body Cameras By End of Summer: The Chambersburg Public Opinion reports that “as police departments across the country continue to be scrutinized in the wake of police-involved shootings, local departments in Franklin County are ready to take a leap into the future with the implementation of body cameras to outfit officers on duty,” thanks to a Department of Justice grant. 

Erie Times-News: ‘Ballot shortage, voters taking ballots from polls among problems in Erie County election’: The Erie Times-News reports on some of the difficulties in Erie County for the most recent primary election. 

Delco Daily Times: ‘Delco council OKs rule prohibiting members from profiting from county contracts’: The Delaware County Daily Times reports that Delaware County Council “unanimously approved amending the county’s Administrative Code to prohibit council members from knowingly deriving a financial interest from county contracts.” 

Krasner Talks Violent Crime With Mehdi Hasan: Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner joined The Mehdi Hasan Show for an interview to talk about the causes for the rise in violent crime across the country. 

Meuser Hires Owens As Comms Directors: According to a press release, Rep. Dan Meuser (R-Luzerne) has hired Mary Owens to serve as his office’s new Communications Director. Owens most recently served as Press Secretary for Sen. Mike Braun (R-IN).  

Harrisburg & DC   
ESPN: Son, ghostwriter of late senator say Trump intervened to stop probe of Patriots’ Spygate scandal
The Caucus: Republicans are lining up for PA’s 2022 governor’s race. The key question is: Who will hold the Trump card?
Spotlight PA: ‘Internal systemic failures’ led to Wolf administration blunder that derailed child sex abuse amendment
AP: State drops legal action against restaurants over pandemic
AP: Governor pardons eye doctor who grew marijuana for sick wife
Inquirer: Lou Barletta is reintroducing himself to Pa. voters as he runs for governor after a rough 2018 campaign 
Patriot News: Cocktails to-go closer to becoming permanent at restaurants and bars in Pennsylvania
Patriot News: Pa. COVID-19 restrictions won’t end before Memorial Day, Gov. Tom Wolf says
Patriot News: Pa. House Committee considers bill to abolish “concealed carry” permits for handgun owners
Patriot News: New Pa. law updates requirements for a CDL license
Patriot News: Gov. Wolf says Pa. within striking distance of 70% vaccinated against COVID-19, end of face mask mandate
Patriot News: Pa. reports 38 more COVID-19 deaths: daily update
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Answering calls for transparency, Senate committee holds first public hearing on redistricting 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. child abuse lawsuits held up due ‘systemic failures’ in Dept. of State, report says 
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: McClinton calls for safeguards against prison gerrymandering in Pa. legislative maps 
Post-Gazette: Pa. Treasurer Garrity warns banks against divesting from fossil fuel companies
Post-Gazette: Pennsylvania and its state-owned universities ponder debt relief as controversial merger vote nears
WHYY Newsworks: Students or horses? Education advocates want to repurpose Pa.’s generous horse-racing subsidy
WHYY Newsworks: The Pa. legislature has new power to overrule Wolf on COVID. The two camps differ on details
WHYY Newsworks: Pa. coronavirus update: 70% of adults at least partially vaccinated
USA Today: ‘Internal systemic failures’ blamed for child abuse constitutional amendment blunder
Erie Times-News: Bill would allow PA students to repeat current school year even if eligible to advance
WESA: A Year After George Floyd’s Murder, Black Pennsylvania Lawmakers Double Down On Push For Police Accountability
City & State PA: A Q&A with ‘Trump House’ creator and freshman state Rep. Leslie Rossi 
City & State PA: Report: Dept. of State slip-up caused by lack of oversight 
Reading Eagle: Sen. Bob Casey outlines ambitious plan to invest in America’s children
PLSReporter: State Department’s failure to advertise sexual abuse amendment due to ‘systemic failures,’ report says
KDKA: Gov. Tom Wolf Renews Calls For Minimum Wage Increase 
KDKA: Pennsylvania Woman Accused Of Stealing Nancy Pelosi’s Laptop During Capitol Riots Granted Release 
KDKA: Bill Aims To Make It Easier For State To Determine Which Businesses Are Essential And Life-Sustaining
KDKA: Pa. Attorney General And Senate Democrats Reveal Bills To Hold Negligent Frackers Accountable
Fox News: Ex-Penn State president gets 2-month jail sentence linked to Jerry Sandusky abuse case
Tribune Review: Child sex abuse survivors, supporters pressure Pa. Senate leader Kim Ward to bring bill to vote
CNHI: IG report faults agency’s handling, but finds no intentional wrongdoing in ballot question debacle
CNHI: Bill to give students COVID-19 do-over year moving in state House
The Hill: Biden faces dilemma on Trump steel tariffs
The Hill: Former Penn State president to start prison term for role in Sandusky scandal
The Hill: Pennsylvania becomes 10th state to hit Biden’s vaccine goal
Express Times: Pa. 10th state to hit 70% of adults with at least 1 COVID shot
KYW Newsradio: Bills that would stiffen penalties for human trafficking pass Pa. House
York Daily Record: Watch: PA’s failure to advertise sex abuse amendment explained
York Daily Record: ‘Return to normalcy is not a quick jump’: COVID-19 cloud begins to lift in PA ahead of Memorial Day
York Daily Record: Here’s how more than 18,000 doses of the COVID vaccine went to waste in Pennsylvania
CNN: The 10 Senate seats most likely to flip in 2022
CNN: Former Penn State President Graham Spanier will start prison sentence on July 9, judge rules
Pittsburgh Business Times: Wolf says he’s comfortable with lifting Covid restrictions Monday

Philadelphia Tribune: Legislators demand more transparency around errors affecting OnePhilly payroll system 
Inquirer: Lou Barletta is reintroducing himself to Pa. voters as he runs for governor after a rough 2018 campaign 
Inquirer: Philly will count undated mail ballots the Pa. Supreme Court said should be thrown out
Inquirer: Former State Sen. Vincent Fumo loses legal round in long-running tax battle over his abuse of South Philly nonprofit
Inquirer: Philly’s indicted former treasurer is facing new charges tied to his role in a medical marijuana start-up
Inquirer: PHA to get ‘unprecedented’ $10 million in housing vouchers
Inquirer: What’s opened and closed Memorial Day in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and New Jersey
WHYY Newsworks: Violence interrupters, police will try to keep the peace over Memorial Day weekend
KYW Newsradio: Feds slap fired Philadelphia treasurer with fresh charges involving tax misconduct
KYW Newsradio: Philadelphia leaders brace for summer spike in gun violence during record year
KYW Newsradio: No parental consent needed for COVID-19 vaccine, says Philly Health Department
Philly Voice: FEMA vaccination sites close in Philadelphia
Philadelphia Business Journal: Ex-Philadelphia city treasurer faces additional charges 
Billy Penn: Public pools can’t open without them: Philly’s new lifeguards could be the saviors of summer 

Daily Local News: Throwing money at the voters
Delco Daily Times: Delco council OKs rule prohibiting members from profiting from county contracts
Bucks County Courier Times: Montgomery County launches task force focused on human trafficking, child exploitation 
Bucks County Courier Times: Doylestown nursing home employees join workers statewide in calling for fair wages, benefits 
Bucks County Courier Times: The secret journey in search of Bucks County’s last MIA from Vietnam
Montgomery Media: Montgomery County records 32 new coronavirus cases, no new deaths in daily report

KDKA: Tony Moreno Says He’s Considering Accepting Republican Nomination For Pittsburgh Mayor  
KDKA: KDKA Investigates Uncovers More Questionable Paycheck Protection Program Money In McKeesport 
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: Allegheny Co. Health Dept. Reports Under 100 New Cases Again
KDKA: COVID-19 In Pittsburgh: About 75% Of Adults Have Received One Does Of COVID-19 Vaccine
Post-Gazette: Tony Moreno wins GOP nomination for Pittsburgh mayor via write-ins, could face Ed Gainey in November general election 
Post-Gazette: Amid climbing veterans’ suicide rate, Allegheny County partners with VA 
Post-Gazette: Pennsylvania moves closer to 70% vaccination goal; Allegheny County excited by its numbers
Tribune Review: Will Tony Moreno run as a Republican in Pittsburgh mayoral race? 
Tribune Review: Green Party candidate hopes to shake up Pittsburgh council  
Tribune Review: $3.4M to fight blight coming to Allegheny, Westmoreland counties 
Tribune Review: Allegheny County reports 5th straight day of covid cases under 100
Pittsburgh Business Times: Allegheny County to scale back on Covid briefings, daily reports
WESA: Nursing Home Staff Say Conditions Are Bleak, Hope Union Negotiations Bring Higher Staffing Levels

Tribune Review: Child sex abuse survivors, supporters pressure Pa. Senate leader Kim Ward to bring bill to vote
Tribune Review: $3.4M to fight blight coming to Allegheny, Westmoreland counties 
Altoona Mirror: City looking for ways to expand housing stock
Observer-Reporter: Two new COVID-19 deaths reported in Washington County
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Local hospitals see COVID-19 uptick, state hospitalizations fall
Beaver County Times: Beaver County nursing home workers rally Tuesday for staffing, wages and protections for residents

The Times Leader: Casey, Pashinski and local educators push for American Family Plan
The Times Leader: Luzerne County Council votes to seek primary investigation
The Times Leader: Senate Finance Committee passes Yudichak’s tax credit bills
The Times Leader: Mullery urges making changes to UC system
The Times Leader: SEIU members demonstrate over pay, staffing
The Times Leader: 35 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed in Luzerne County on Wednesday; 1 death
Citizens Voice: County council asks DA to investigate primary problems
Citizens Voice: 35 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death reported in county
Times-Tribune: Local legislators, educators express support for Biden’s American Families Plan
Times-Tribune: Scranton projects gets state funds to fight blight
Times-Tribune: NEPA sees 79 new COVID-19 cases, but cases continue downward trend 

South Central 
LNP | LancasterOnline: Gov. Wolf visits Lancaster to push minimum wage increase, while local companies say they’re far past it
LNP | LancasterOnline: Lancaster County Commissioners disapprove of LGH staff COVID-19 vaccine requirement
LNP | LancasterOnline: Lancaster County courts lift mask mandate for vaccinated, but still require masks for unvaccinated
LNP | LancasterOnline: Lancaster County commissioners approve land purchase for new prison
York Dispatch: Wednesday update: One new COVID-19 death reported in York County
York Daily Record: Amish community’s reaction to the vaccination has mirrored their rural PA neighbors
York Daily Record: York County COVID-19 vaccine tracker: 36% of people fully vaccinated
Carlisle Sentinel: DOH: 14 new cases of COVID-19 for Cumberland County Wednesday
Patriot News: Township official accused of using government money to repair driveway, other home projects: attorney general
Chambersburg Public Opinion: Franklin County police departments will have body cameras soon, thanks to DOJ grant

Lehigh Valley      
WFMZ: Constitutional amendment failure reviewed, representatives dismayed with findings
WFMZ: Berks lawmakers announce grants for redevelopment in Reading 
WFMZ: Proposed Bethlehem pedestrian bridge draws questions, ideas from community 
Reading Eagle: State awards $200,000 in grants to address blight in Reading 
Reading Eagle: Reading City Council wants to let police destroy confiscated dirt bikes and ATVs 
Reading Eagle: Downward trend of COVID statistics continues for Berks County
Morning Call: Lehigh Valley’s warehouse industry explosion catches New York Times’ attention
Morning Call: Pennsylvania drops lawsuits against restaurants accused of defying shutdown orders, including 4 in Lehigh Valley: ‘How do you expect people to live?’ 

North by Northwest
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Yaw says state now moving forward
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: South Williamsport officials look to modernize police, municipal facilities
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Clinton County lags behind on vaccinations
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Mayor names Snyder next city police chief
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Commercial, industrial blight under review
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: City officials emphasize anonymity, privacy in surveillance camera database
Erie Times-News: Ballot shortage, voters taking ballots from polls among problems in Erie County election
Erie Times-News: ‘Not just one person’: Vigil held in Erie for George Floyd on 1-year anniversary of death
Erie Times-News: First in the US: Erie children, 2- to 11 years old, to be part of Pfizer vaccine trial
Centre Daily Times: ‘We must press on.’ State College community marks anniversary of George Floyd’s death
Centre Daily Times: Judge upholds Penn St. ex-president Spanier’s jail sentence

Rebecca Rhynhart: Philly will waste the big opportunity of American Rescue Plan funds if they’re not used strategically
Mark S. Schweiker: It’s time for America to put the 9/11 mastermind on trial
Paul Muschick: Why wait? Pennsylvania should start work-search rule for unemployment this week
Christine Speer Lejeune: Ideas We Should Steal: Vax To Win 
John L. Micek: The fight over critical race theory lands in Harrisburg; House GOP bill would punish districts that teach it | Thursday Morning Coffee
Inquirer Editorial Board: Republican assault on abortion raises stakes for Pa.’s 2022 governor race
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Parents should have a say in the question of their child repeating a grade 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: A compromise on Biden infrastructure plan is needed 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Whether you buy a gun or build one from a kit, the same rules should apply 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: A commission to investigate the Jan. 6 insurrection is needed 
York Daily Record Editorial Board: Clerk of Courts is denying free access to records. President judge must intervene
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: Rely on medical professionals for information about COVID-19 vaccination. We amplify the expertise of 2.
Inquirer: Vegan vs. butcher: Is cutting meat from our diets the cure for our planet’s health? | Pro/Con
Jonathan C. Rothermel: Want common sense electoral reform? Legalize weekend voting 
Maria Panaritis: Did ‘Mare of Easttown’ Detective Zabel get his name from a real Delco family?
Helen Ubiñas: Bring that same Philly Weekly fury to every city institution that dehumanizes homicide victims 
Alan Greenberger and Harris Steinberg: Amazon HQ2 pitch can be the playbook for Philadelphia’s post-COVID-19 renaissance
Bruce Katz and Colin Higgins: Lessons From Jane Jacobs
Elizabeth H. Hughes: Inquirer publisher: One year later, reflection and a look ahead
Thoai Nguyen and Josh McNeil: Philadelphia needs the federal jobs plan to fight massive threats of climate change 
Joyce M. Davis: We can thank Pennsylvania’s responsible college students for not spreading COVID-19 | Social Views
Timothy D. Pelkowski: We could save lives and money by legalizing needle exchange programs in Pa.
Jenice Armstrong: Don’t believe it when people say ‘no one wants to work anymore’
Chris Freind: Elections with missing ballots, racism, exploding crime — oh my!
Christine Flowers: Why we must rise up and battle anti-Semitism
Moodys’ Zandi: Inflation should ease by next year, but plan for a bumpy ride
Bill White: Discoveries from returning to my childhood home in the suburban experiment of Levittown
Chaundra Furin-Campbell: Ideas We Should Steal: Reason To Run 
Leah Lizarondo: Without the voices of Asian American women, the American dream is diminished for all
Daryl James: Screwed over by the PPA? Lawyers say the penalty system is unconstitutional
The Angry Grammarian: The bigger the boss, the shorter your emails should be

One Response

  1. Hard to see this governor race called a toss up, unless all the GOP misfits and Trumpers can agree on which crazy asshole to vote for.

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