Close this search box.

May 4: Getting Things Done?

PA Capitol

⭐ Yes, We Are Well Aware of What Day It Is. May The Fourth Be With You

PA Weather
Ridgway | Showers Likely, 53
Hummels Wharf | Scattered Showers, 57
Hazleton | Scattered Showers, 54

PA Sports
Pirates (20-11) | Tampa 1-8 | Th vs. Tampa Bay
Phillies (15-17) | Dodgers 6-10 | F-Sun vs. Boston
76ers (1-1) | Boston 87-121 | F vs. Boston
Union | Sat vs. NY Red Bulls

What We’re Hearing
“Are you on the side of organized labor when it’s campaign time, or are you on the side of organized labor and people when it’s time to stand up for them?” – Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta

Join The PoliticsPA Community
Sign up for your free subscription to the PoliticsPA Playbook and we’ll email you every weekday morning.


Top Story

1. PA House Lawmakers Show Bipartisan Support For Republican Gun Safety Amendments

PA safety alliance launches to improve gun safety and save lives | ABC27

“Pennsylvania House lawmakers approved Republican amendments to a slate of four gun safety bills as they sought compromise on the first gun reform legislation to reach the House floor since Democrats won control of the chamber last year.

One amendment addresses concern among Republicans about the weaponization of a red flag law allowing courts to disarm gun owners found to be a risk to themselves or others by creating a felony penalty for making false reports.

Another pair of amendments to a universal background check bill adds a requirement to notify U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s office if a would-be gun buyer fails a background check because of their immigration status.” (Pennsylvania Capital-Star)


Munley Nominated For U.S. District Court For PA’s Middle District. “U.S. Senators Bob Casey and John Fetterman announced that President Joe Biden has nominated Judge Julia K. Munley to serve on the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania.” (PoliticsPA)

  • Biden To Nominate Lackawanna County Judge Munley For A Federal Court Seat. (Times-Tribune)


Three More Cabinet Appointees Confirmed By State Senate. “The Pennsylvania State Senate confirmed three more appointments to Gov. Josh Shapiro’s administration on Wednesday, voting unanimously to approve Jason P. Kavulich, Frederick “Rick” C. Siger, and Michael B. Carroll.” (PoliticsPA)

A Year And A Half Out, These Are 2024’2 Most Vulnerable Senators. “CQ Roll Call’s first look at the 10 most vulnerable senators of 2024 is dominated by Democratic incumbents, some of whom have not made their intentions known.” (Roll Call)



2. Split Vote Moves Constitutional Workers’ Rights Bill Out Of PA House

Proposed amendment on workers' rights advances in Pa. House | Local News |

“A proposed amendment seeking to enshrine the right to organized labor and collective bargaining in Pennsylvania’s constitution narrowly advanced out of the state House.
House Bill 950 passed Wednesday by a vote of 102-99. All Democrats voted in favor while all but one Republican, Rep. Thomas Mehaffie III of Dauphin County, voted in opposition.

The bill’s immediate future seems in doubt as it moves to the Republican-controlled state Senate. It’s an uphill battle for any proposed constitutional amendment to advance, say nothing for those inspiring partisan splits.” (CNHI News)


Proposal To Put Collective Bargaining Rights Into PA Constitution Gets Final Passage In House. “A proposal to add collective bargaining rights to the Pennsylvania constitution passed the House on Wednesday, capping off a week of success for the Democratic majority in moving bills supported by organized labor.” (PennLive)

PA Senate Backs Bill To Narrow Philly Commuter Tax. “Pennsylvania’s state Senate voted Wednesday to pare back a Depression-era law that allows Philadelphia to impose a commuter tax on suburban residents.” (AP)

PA’s New Transportation Chief Emphasizes Safety In Expanding Passenger Rail Between Harrisburg And Pittsburgh. “State officials continue to work toward a deal to increase passenger rail service between Pittsburgh and Harrisburg on tracks owned by Norfolk Southern.” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

Is Your Political Sign Missing? “When campaign signs go missing every election season, many candidates assume it’s the opposition that is removing them. In most cases, however, that isn’t the case.” (The Derrick)

PA State Lawmaker Charged With DUI Following Single-Vehicle Crash. “Rep. Torren Ecker, 37, of New Oxford, had a blood-alcohol level of .13, leading to the driving under the influence and related charges filed against him, according to court documents. The state’s legal limit is .08.” (PennLive)


Around The Commonwealth

3. New Poll Shows Innamorato Vaulting To Lead In County Executive Race

Sara Innamorato

“A new survey from Pittsburgh Works Together, a consortium of business interests and building trades unions, shows that state Rep. Sara Innamorato has vaulted to the lead in the race for Allegheny County Executive.

Innamorato has the backing of 32% of registered Democrats likely to vote in the May 16 primary, the survey of 400 voters by Virginia-based Public Opinion Strategies shows” (WESA)


Innamorato Holds Lead In ACE Race. “Rep. Sara Innamorato holds the lead in the race for the Democratic nomination for Allegheny County Executive according to a new poll released on Wednesday morning.” (PoliticsPA)

  • Bernie Sanders Endorses Sara Innamorato In Race For Allegheny County Executive. (Tribune-Review)


Gym Picks Up Endorsement Of Sanders For Philly Mayor. “Former Philadelphia City Councilmember Helen Gym picked up a well-known endorsement on Tuesday, as Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders threw his support behind her candidacy for mayor.” (PoliticsPA)

Former Congressman Green Endorses Domb In Philly Mayor’s Race. “Breaking with a recent trend, former Philadelphia mayor Bill Green endorsed Allan Domb to be the city’s 100th mayor.” (PoliticsPA)

Former Assistant Police Chief Larry Scirotto Is Named Pittsburgh’s Next Top Cop. “Moments after being named the new chief of the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, Larry Scirotto took questions head-on Wednesday about why he was fired from his last job and his controversial side-gig as a college basketball referee.” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

  • For Police Chief, Gainey Picks Scirotto Who Was Fired From Fort Lauderdale Job Amid Diversity Push. (Public Source)


Mayor Ed Gainey’s Search For A New Police Chief Was Shrouded In Secrecy. “The search for Pittsburgh’s new police chief is over. But community leaders and stakeholders still have questions about how Mayor Ed Gainey made his decision.” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

The Mayor And Two Rivals Run For The Right To Run Bankrupt Chester. “A Chester political patriarch and his two challengers are battling vigorously for the privilege of running a city that the state warns might cease to exist by year’s end — a campaign that might well be without precedent in American politics.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Voters Should Chart A New Course In Montco Commissioners Race. “The Inquirer Editorial Board recommends Democrats Noah Marlier and Neil Makhija and Republicans Liz Ferry and Tom DiBello.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)



4. What They’re Saying

A glance around the Keystone State at editorials and opinions.


Criminalizing Tranq Won’t Arrest Addiction Epidemic; State Needs Massive Public Health Campaign. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)


These Powerful Unions Helped Flip The PA House. (David Osborne)
These Suburbs Are Pulling PA Apart. (Guy Ciarrocchi)
Blame America’s Pitiful Vacation Policy For Burnout. (Erin Lowry)
Hey, It’s May And PA’s Legislature Is Working. Will It Produce? (John Baer)


1 Thing

5. Bottoming Out

Improving College Graduation Rates: A Closer Look at California State University - Public Policy Institute of California

According to U.S. News & World Report, Pennsylvania ranks last – that’s 50th out of 50, folks – among states in higher education. 

The magazine unveiled its 2023 rankings of the country’s best states recently. It averaged three years’ worth of national survey data from nearly 70,000 people, analyzing the share of each state’s college degree holders, graduation rates, costs of in-state tuition and fees and graduate debt load.

Florida, Washington and California ranked 1-2-3. Among neighboring states, Maryland (12), New York (14) and Delaware (20) ranked in the top 20.


Thanks for starting your day with us.
What did you think of today’s newsletter?
Please invite your colleagues
to subscribe to the PoliticsPA Playbook

3 Responses

  1. On orders of Godfather Zap i put a crew together
    from the old Penn Hills mob then went to a Fox Chapel bar to kick some yuppie ass and show the voters what we can still do on behalf of Stevie jr.
    In his D.A. .campaign.
    I got a black eye. Rucci took a left hook to the face and lost 4 teeth. Murgie dropped his knife
    and stabbed his foot. Genovese never fights so he
    Called an ambulance. The cops came instead and charged us with Disorderly conduct. I think we
    Scared those yuppies all right

  2. US News and World Report story you note here is the same old same old. These young people are graduating with massive student loan debt and we are not doing a good job matching them with jobs. The bottom line is we have community colleges in PA so why aren’t we pushing these schools more? Have programs that offer tuition free community college education for short term programs or 2 year degrees?


  • Does the NYC Verdict Make You More or Less Likely to Vote For Trump in 2024?

    • Less Likely (36%)
    • More Likely (34%)
    • Makes No Difference (30%)

    Total Voters: 112

    Loading ... Loading ...
Continue to Browser


To install tap and choose
Add to Home Screen