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May 29th Playbook

1 million Democrats in the state apply to vote by mail, while a GOP congressional hopeful in the Lehigh Valley is on television with an ad touting her endorsement from President Donald Trump. Here is the Playbook.

1 Million Dems Apply to Vote By Mail in PA: According to a release sent from the Pennsylvania Democratic Party on Friday, over 1 million Democrats in the state have applied to vote by mail, doubling the amount of Republicans in the state that have applied for a mail-in ballot.

PA7: Scheller Promotes Trump Endorsement in Latest Ad: The GOP hopeful for the 7th Congressional District promotes President Donald Trump endorsing her candidacy in her latest 30 second spot.

Legislative Election Update:

SD-1: The New York Times and the Philadelphia Citizen detail Nikil Saval’s Democratic primary bid for the state Senate’s 1st District in Pennsylvania against state Sen. Larry Farnese (D-Philadelphia). 

HD-26: The Daily Local News previews the Democratic primary in the state House’s 26th District where Paul Friel and Frank Gillen face off in next week’s primary for the chance to unseat state Rep. Tim Hennessey (R-Chester). 

SD-9: The Daily Local News highlights the Democratic primary in the state Senate’s 9th District where John Kane, a master plumber and business manager of the largest plumbing union in the state, and Brett Burman, a former public school teacher and now health care consultant, both seek the party nod to run against state Sen. Tom Killion (R-Delaware) in November. 

HD-34: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and KDKA preview the Democratic primary where state Rep. Summer Lee (D-Allegheny) is facing a challenge from fellow Democrat Chris Roland, a North Braddock Councilman. 

HD-36: The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette details the four candidate Democratic primary between Jessica Benham, Heather Kass, Mark Johnson and Ed Moeller for the state House’s 36th District. State Rep. Harry Readshaw (D-Allegheny) announced that he was not going to seek reelection for the seat. 

HD-138: The Allentown Morning Call previews the GOP primary between Tony Tarsi and Ann Flood for the 138th state House seat held by state Rep. Marcia Hahn (R-Northampton), who is retiring at the end of her current term. 

HD-131: The Allentown Morning Call highlights the four candidate Republican primary between Nathan Brown, Joe Ellenberger, Vicki Lightcap, and Milou Mackenzie for the state House’s 131st District. State Rep. Justin Simmons (R-Lehigh) announced in December that he was not going to seek another term in 2020. 

HD-3: The Erie Times-News previews the race in the state House’s 3rd District where state Rep. Ryan Bizzarro (D-Erie) is unopposed on the Democratic and Republican ballots for the primary, but Republican Gregory Hayes has launched a write-in campaign for the GOP nomination.

Harrisburg & DC   
AP: Secrecy on legislator’s COVID-19 illness roils a statehouse 
AP: Flood of mail-in ballots spurs fight to change deadlines 
AP: Claims backlog persists; Pennsylvania park beaches to reopen
Spotlight PA: Pa. legislature sends $26 billion short-term budget to Gov. Tom Wolf 
Spotlight PA: Massive unemployment scam strikes up to 58,000 people in Pa., far more than previously known 
Spotlight PA: A coronavirus case in the Pa. Capitol takes partisan rancor over the pandemic to a new level 
Spotlight PA: Pennsylvania is sitting on billions in coronavirus relief money. What’s the holdup?
Spotlight PA: Dwarfing competitors, UPMC receives $228 million in coronavirus stimulus cash 
York Daily Record: Attorney General upset Pa. lawmakers didn’t disclose COVID-19 cases, but won’t investigate
Inquirer: Pennsylvania Republicans don’t want to vote by mail: ‘We’re listening to Trump on this’
Inquirer: Pa. House Democrats say they were in the dark about Republican’s positive coronavirus test 
Inquirer: Another 2 million Americans filed for unemployment and Pa. has paid more than $10 billion in benefits
Inquirer: Confused by all the unemployment numbers? Here’s how to read economic data in a pandemic.
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. Senate sends Wolf stopgap $25.8 billion budget; Wolf expected to sign it
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Lawmakers advance plan to spend $2.6 billion of Pennsylvania’s coronavirus stimulus
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: The latest on COVID-19 in Pa.: 69,417 confirmed cases in 67 counties
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Turzai says he didn’t know about positive COVID test, calls for future transparency
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Lawmakers beef up school safety grant fund to pay for masks, gloves in pandemic
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. scholarships capped again, but there’s good news for online students
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Pa. rolls out new pandemic food assistance program
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Sixty more Pa. liquor stores set to reopen in yellow counties on Friday
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: ‘People of color want freedom … from infection, freedom from death’: Pa.’s Evans, lawmakers hear
Pennsylvania Capital-Star: Dems ahead in ChesCo as Lawrence goes red at primary deadline | Voter Registration Analysis
Patriot News: Delayed notice of Pa. lawmaker’s COVID-19 diagnosis spurs outrage, calls for investigation
Patriot News: An Election Day like never before: Mail-in balloting, new voting machines, multi-day counts for Pa.’s primary
Patriot News: What’s next? A look at which Pa. counties could be headed for green under Wolf’s coronavirus rules
Patriot News: Pa. state grants for college students to remain unchanged for 2020-21 
Patriot News: Pa. state rep. says House speaker ‘should be in jail,’ claims GOP withheld knowledge of coronavirus exposure
Patriot News: Coronavirus cases by day in Pa. (5/28/20): How fast is COVID-19 spreading? 
Patriot News: What will fall look like at central Pa. colleges? For now, plans are in limbo 
New York Times: A G.O.P. Lawmaker Had the Virus. Nobody Told Democrats Exposed to Him. 
New York Times: The N+1 Candidate
WITF: Judge orders Pa. to launch new method for visually impaired voters for next week’s primary
PLSReporter: Lawmakers advance interim budget, CARES Act spending blueprint to Wolf’s desk 
PLSReporter: Democrats call for investigation into House GOP’s handling of lawmaker’s COVID-19 diagnosis 
PLSReporter: With the primary election approaching, 4 Pa. legislative candidates earn endorsement of Bernie Sanders 
PLSReporter: COVID-19 by the numbers: A statewide look at the coronavirus in Pa.
Reading Eagle: Berks lawmaker Mark Rozzi sues Allentown Diocese, alleging a priest sexually abused him when he was 13   
Fox News: Pro-Trump super PAC to target Biden over economy in new ads running in 3 key battlegrounds
Fox News: Biden camp denies ex-VP confused D-Day with Pearl Harbor Day during fundraiser
StateImpactPA: DEP stood to gain new staffers, but now faces flat funding to start next fiscal year
National Journal: Trump bends the pandemic to his political ends 
The Hill: Pennsylvania Democrats say they were not informed of Republican’s coronavirus diagnosis 
CNN: How a positive coronavirus test sent this state’s legislature into chaos 
CNN: PA lawmaker accuses GOP leaders of silence on positive Covid-19 test
CNN: Pennsylvania House Democrats accuse Republicans of keeping GOP member’s positive Covid test from them for a week 
CNN: New GOP group launches $10 million campaign to get Republicans to vote for Biden over Trump 
CNN: Legal battles over voter roll purges heat up as mail-in ballot fight continues
KYW Newsradio: Short-term Pennsylvania budget sent to Wolf 
Huffington Post: Pennsylvania Democrats: GOP Lawmaker’s Positive COVID-19 Test Kept Secret For A Week 
Huffington Post: GOP Hides Coronavirus Case In Pennsylvania Legislature

Philly Clout: Nina Ahmad is making a million-dollar bet that an obscure state office will open future opportunities
Inquirer: Despite coronavirus uncertainty, Philly passes a $3.5 billion budget, but trouble looms ahead 
Inquirer: Gov. Tom Wolf’s push to move Philly area to ‘yellow’ phase despite data met with skepticism among city officials 
Inquirer: Philly’s plastic bag ban is in jeopardy after Pa. Republicans amended a budget bill in a bid to halt it 
Inquirer: Philly will have mail ballot drop boxes for voters this weekend and on election day. Find yours here. 
Inquirer: Voting is different in Philly this year. Here’s what you need to know for Tuesday’s coronavirus primary. 
Inquirer: As officials navigate boundaries of reopening, Philadelphia weighs outdoor dining and Delaware opens campgrounds 
Inquirer: Planning for Philly outdoor dining is ‘extremely complicated,’ officials say; it’s too soon to know coronavirus’ full impact on area hospitals 
Inquirer: Philly Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw condemns death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody
Inquirer: Philly-area industrial leases approach pre-pandemic levels on e-commerce demand: Report
NBC10: Kenney scraps Philly property tax increase, citing state help
WHYY Newsworks: Philly schools avoid budget cuts despite COVID-19 economic pain
WHYY Newsworks: Coronavirus update: Pa. businesses push for protection from consumer lawsuits
WHYY Newsworks: Philly Police Commissioner Outlaw reacts to murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis
WHYY Newsworks: Black doctors are providing free COVID-19 testing. Council wants to know why the city isn’t funding them.
WHYY Newsworks: Philly restaurants must hold off on outdoor dining when city enters yellow phase
WHYY Newsworks: Hite says that school reopening in the fall may vary across the city
Philadelphia Tribune: Opening of SDP schools could vary across district
Philadelphia Tribune: May 27 coronavirus update: Pandemic fails to slow homicide pace as city count rises 12%
Philadelphia Citizen: Just Another Socialist Revolutionary, Policy Nerd, Organizer… And Would-Be Pol 
KYW Newsradio: Kenney asks restaurants to wait for his guidelines as they prepare for outdoor dining on June 5
KYW Newsradio: Philadelphia school board adopts a budget as state funding fills a shortfall
KYW Newsradio: Mayor withdraws real estate tax hike after state covers school shortfall
KYW Newsradio: Gov. Wolf paves way for pro sports with new guidance
KYW Newsradio: Philly commissioners working to get mail-in ballots by Election Day
KYW Newsradio: Top police brass in Delaware Valley say they’re outraged at George Floyd arrest video
Philly Voice: Philly launches pickup recycling service for clothing, electronics 
Philly Voice: Philly officials caution outdoor restaurant dining service could be delayed 
Philly Voice: Rep. Brian Sims slams GOP for covering up Pa. lawmaker’s COVID-19 diagnosis; AG Shapiro will not investigate 
Philly Voice: Ex-Eagle Malcolm Jenkins to address Philly school district graduates at virtual commencement 
Philadelphia Magazine: Attorney General’s Office Flooded With Complaints About Main Line-Based ESF Camps 
Billy Penn: Hundreds laid off, no arts funding and every other reason people are protesting Kenney’s budget cuts
Billy Penn: Why Harrisburg is feuding over a state rep’s hush-hush coronavirus test
Billy Penn: Procrastinator’s Guide to the 2020 primary election in Philly
Billy Penn: Can first-year college students defer enrollment till things get more normal? Depends on the school
Billy Penn: Sakeenah Benjamin is Billy Penn’s new audience coordinator
Philadelphia Business Journal: Kenney pulls property tax increase from Philadelphia budget proposal 
Philadelphia Business Journal: Inquirer cuts almost half its ad department; CBS3 lays off 14, including on-air talent

Bucks County Courier Times: Primary results in Bucks expect to take “much longer” than previous elections
Bucks County Courier Times: Bucks petitions for mail-in deadline extension
Daily Local News: Burman, Kane face off for Killion’s 9th Senatorial District seat
Daily Local News: Two contend for Democratic nomination in 26th House District
Daily Local News: Killion backs 12-month funding for education in interim budget
Daily Local News: Outdoor dining returns to Chester County next week
Daily Local News: Chester County launches tool to help businesses prepare to open on June 5
Delco Daily Times: Reopen PA rally calls for repealing emergency shutdown
Delco Daily Times: County courts to partially reopen Monday
Inquirer: Bucks County just went to court to extend Pennsylvania’s mail ballot deadline
KYW Newsradio: Montco commissioner says they’re seeing rise in COVID-19 hospitalizations
KYW Newsradio: Bucks County officials say voters will be required to wear masks at polling places
Bucks Local News: State lawmakers ask Gov. Wolf to allow personal service industry businesses to operate under yellow, green phases of reopening
Bucks Local News: Bucks County announces drop-off ballot box locations as mail-ins near 100,000
Montgomery Media: Montgomery County official: ‘Coronavirus is still in our midst’

KDKA: U.S. Health And Human Services Secretary To Visit Pittsburgh, Beaver County 
KDKA: Region’s First African American Female Lawmaker Challenged By Local Councilman 
KDKA: ‘The Region Is Ready’: Southwestern Pennsylvania Leaders Believe Their Counties Are Next In Line For ‘Green’ Phase 
KDKA: Around The Table: Mail-In Ballots Could Cause Delay In Election Results 
KDKA: President Donald Trump Says U.S. Department Of Transportation Is Committing Nearly $100M To Port Authority 
KDKA: Local Politician Leads ‘Reopen Pennsylvania’ Rally Outside Rep. Anita Kulik’s Carnegie Office
KDKA: Allegheny Co. Health Dept. Reports 23 New Coronavirus Cases But No Additional Deaths, Countywide Cases Total 1,851
KDKA: Allegheny Co. Health Dept. Fines US Steel More Than $361K For Violations At Clairton Coke Works
KDKA: ‘Enough’s Enough’: Allegheny Co. Businesses Eagerly Await ‘Green Phase’ Announcement From Governor 
KDKA: ‘Extremely Barbaric’: B-PEP’s Tim Stevens And Dr. Cyril Wecht Condemn Death Of George Floyd In Minneapolis Police Custody
Post-Gazette: HHS Secretary Azar to visit region Friday, citing health benefits of reopening U.S.
Post-Gazette: Port Authority gets $100M in federal funding for Oakland-Downtown rapid transit project
Post-Gazette: Four Democrats vying for House 36 nomination cite their professional experience 
Post-Gazette: Allegheny County government set to emerge from pandemic in better shape, but much ‘unknown’ 
Post-Gazette: Primary 2020 | Progressive vs. pragmatic: Democratic candidates for 34th House District offer up different philosophies 
Post-Gazette: Review of COVID-19 case data shows broad, continued regional declines 
Post-Gazette: Courts in Pittsburgh area to resume most operations Monday 
Post-Gazette: Housing Authority donates $275K to ensure internet access for city students 
Post-Gazette: County fines U.S. Steel more than $360K for violations at Clairton plant 
Post-Gazette: Ross Township commissioner resigns before moving to Pine 
Post-Gazette: KDKA anchor Brenda Waters retires after more than 35 years on Pittsburgh TV
Tribune Review: UPMC to get $1 billion in federal aid after hard hit from coronavirus pandemic 
Tribune Review: Allegheny County Health Department issues $361K fine against U.S. Steel 
Tribune Review: KDKA-TV anchors Rick Dayton, Susan Koeppen let go
City Paper: Accessible write-in ballots for voters with disabilities now available in Pennsylvania 
City Paper: Dems call on Mike Turzai and other GOP leaders to resign after failing to disclose a state rep’s COVID-19 diagnosis
Pittsburgh Business Times: Allegheny County Health Department issues penalties to U.S. Steel 
Pittsburgh Business Times: KDKA lays off anchors Susan Koeppen and Rick Dayton amid ViacomCBS reductions
The Incline: The procrastinator’s guide to Pittsburgh’s 2020 primary: Snail-mail edition 

Beaver County Times: State House members say they were not exposed to GOP colleague with COVID-19 
Beaver County Times: Beaver County officials speak out against George Floyd killing 
Beaver County Times: State says 67,000 patients tested for COVID-19 since shipments began in March 
Beaver County Times: Some dining to reopen in yellow, green counties
Tribune Review: Westmoreland County still needs poll workers for Tuesday’s primary election
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Cambria-Somerset region awaiting green light from governor 
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Johnstown City Council votes in favor of draft plan for virus grant use
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat: Cambria court facilities to require masks, temperature checks
Altoona Mirror: Blair to offer ballot drop-off
Altoona Mirror: Blair’s move to green still not set
Observer-Reporter: With Washington and Greene in yellow, libraries start the process of reopening
Observer-Reporter: Court order addresses voting by those who are blind, have disabilities

Citizens Voice: Luzerne County goes yellow today; here’s what that means 
Citizens Voice: Dems say GOP failed to reveal virus case 
Citizens Voice: State officials: Arena testing site met goals 
Citizens Voice: W-B council gives mayor temporary power to OK outdoor dining requests 
Citizens Voice: Luzerne County planning director resigns 
Citizens Voice: County reports 12 new COVID-19 cases, 1 new death 
Times-Tribune: As Pike and Monroe counties move to yellow phase, businesses ‘promise’ to keep guests safe 
Times-Tribune: Coronavirus death toll rises by six in local counties 
Times-Tribune: As arena virus test site closes, state says it served purpose 
Times-Tribune: COVID-19 – Complete Coverage
The Times Leader: Luzerne County would see $28.6M in federal virus aid under plan before Wolf
The Times Leader: Brown: WB’s losses may not be as dire as predicted 
The Times Leader: 12 new COVID-19 cases in Luzerne County; 1 new death 
The Times Leader: Luzerne County planning/zoning director resigns 
The Times Leader: PA offers accessible write-in ballots for voters with disabilities

South Central 
York Daily Record: Attorney General upset Pa. lawmakers didn’t disclose COVID-19 cases, but won’t investigate
York Daily Record: Like no other in Pa., Lebanon is in revolt
York Daily Record: York commissioner: use of force not blanket right 
Patriot News: Delayed notice of Pa. lawmaker’s COVID-19 diagnosis spurs outrage, calls for investigation
Patriot News: Coronavirus cases by day in Pa. (5/28/20): How fast is COVID-19 spreading? 
Patriot News: New Cumberland mayor out of the ICU: ‘I do not remember anything for at least eight days’ 
Patriot News: Pa. lawmaker wonders why she got $7,000 in unemployment compensation she never requested
York Dispatch: York County has three new deaths linked to COVID-19
York Dispatch: Top judge: York County court and district courts to reopen to public soon
York Dispatch: Helfrich: Residents ‘should do anything they can’ to record cop encounters
LNP | LancasterOnline: Signs of the times: Lancaster County brothers-in-law are making, distributing ReOpen PA signs
LNP | LancasterOnline: Friday’s COVID-19 updates: Lancaster County has 3,056 cases, 291 virus deaths
LNP | LancasterOnline: Some laid-off workers still waiting months for benefits as Pennsylvania continues to grapple with crush of claims
Carlisle Sentinel: DOH: New cases low in Cumberland County as Dauphin’s cases continue to climb ahead of reopening

Lehigh Valley      
Morning Call: Lisa Scheller, Dean Browning clash over Trump, conservative credentials in quest to take on Susan Wild in the Lehigh Valley’s 7th Congressional District
Morning Call: Who will succeed Justin Simmons in 131st District? Four Republicans make their cases 
Morning Call: Pennsylvania primary election preview: Newcomers Tony Tarsi, Ann Flood vie for Republican nod in 138th House seat vacated by Marcia Hahn
Morning Call: Pennsylvania coronavirus reopening: Business groups, including in Lehigh Valley, say too many places are closed: ‘Yellow is the new red’ 
Morning Call: Pennsylvania House passes late-night resolution to end statewide business shutdown 
Morning Call: Green phase guidance prohibiting large crowds puts festivals, including Allentown Fair and Musikfest, in jeopardy  
Reading Eagle: Berks lawmaker Mark Rozzi sues Allentown Diocese, alleging a priest sexually abused him when he was 13 
Reading Eagle: Pennsylvania red, yellow, green coronavirus county reopening statuses explained [Updated] 
Reading Eagle: What it means for Berks County to move into yellow phase on June 5 
Reading Eagle: Berks Democrats criticize Trump for not protecting seniors during coronavirus pandemic 
Express Times: It’s Trump’s pick vs. Trump loyalist in bid to unseat the Lehigh Valley’s congresswoman 
Express Times: Pa. coronavirus update: Total cases hit 70K; 5,373 dead. New cases continue downward trend. Guidance issued for green counties. | COVID-19 case map (5/28/20) 

North by Northwest
Erie Times-News: Dueling write-in campaigns enliven race in 3rd District 
Erie Times-News: Erie County to limit new voting machines at precincts 
Erie Times-News: Some polling site, entrance changes made in Erie County 
Erie Times-News: Report of racial slurs ends retired Erie judge’s job
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: Lawmakers address budget; spending plan goes to Wolf 
Williamsport Sun-Gazette: City agrees to June 11 public gathering restriction in line with state
Centre Daily Times: State College Mayor: Support the small business community as Centre County enters ‘green phase’
Centre Daily Times: Details of a meeting on reopening Centre County will not be released, raising Sunshine Act concerns
Centre Daily Times: Live reopening updates: What to know as Centre County enters the green phase

John Baer: ‘Can you hear me?’ Finally, Gov. Tom Wolf will (literally) face the media again 
Inquirer Editorial Board: By not disclosing COVID-19 diagnosis, Pa. Republicans betrayed our trust and risked lives 
Inquirer Editorial Board: The primary election is our only run before November: can we protect both democracy and health? 
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: No time for politics: GOP lawmaker tested positive, but Dems weren’t told
Post-Gazette Editorial Board: Digital panopticon: Opportunistic tracking tech threatens public trust
LNP | LancasterOnline Editorial Board: Lancaster County makes good efforts to help farmers and those who need food 
Patrick Cicero: COVID-19 has created a financial crisis. Pa. legal aid programs help stabilize families
John L. Micek: Rebel GOP group calls on moderate Repubs in Pa., battleground states to vote Biden | Thursday Morning Coffee
Charles Mitchell: Coronavirus in Pa. — secrecy, hypocrisy by governor exacerbate crisis
Abraham Wyner, PhD: Not a time for politics or bad data
Tom Melcher and Morgan O’Brien: Finding common cause
Aryanna Hunter: American service members are patriots not props. Politicians forget that at their peril 
Megan Malick: Our frontline heroes are still human. And we need to heed their cries for help
Megan Jones-Hoffman: Yes, quarantine life is stressful. An expert explains how to weather the storm
Inga Saffron: Philadelphia struggles to adapt summer’s rituals to pandemic’s reality
Helen Ubiñas: The Great Outdoors isn’t always great for everyone 
Will Bunch: Minneapolis is on fire. But is America’s 911 call enough to change our country’s racism? 
Trudy Rubin: U.S. must stand with Hong Kong against Beijing’s efforts to crush its freedoms 
Jenice Armstrong: Now do you understand why Colin Kaepernick took a knee to protest police brutality? 
Anna Shipp: Social Equity and Climate Resilience Are Economic Drivers 
Bruce Katz, Luise Noring and Andrew Petrisin: The Virus and The City: Wake Up, Feds! 
Phil Gianficaro: Dying to know why Trump won’t wear mask
Tony Norman: Amy Cooper did not get what she deserved

2 Responses

  1. Again, we see the Republicans fail to understand that the average person in Pennsylvania is not as enamored with President Trump as they may be. Touting Trump’s endorsement in a congressional race in Lehigh Valley like going to Philadelphia Eagles game with your favorite New York Giants gear on. Bottom line: the endorsement will not win over a lot of people. You would think that this point would have been made by the failed candidacy of the Republican Candidate for Governor last cycle but I guess that point had been missed.

    1. No, it is just that the True Believers, dead-enders of GOP cannot shake their Fox News psychosis that they are the world.

  • 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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