Close this search box.

November 17: Targets

👋 Hello, Friday! Thanks for reading the PoliticsPA Playbook

PA Weather
🌧️ New Castle | Rain, 62
☁️ Newville | Mostly Cloudy, 66
🌥️ Newtown | Partly Sunny, 67

PA Sports
🏈 Pitt (3-8) | Boston College 24-16 | Nov 25 vs. Duke
🏈 Penn State (8-2) | Sat vs. Rutgers
🏈 Temple (3-7) | Sat vs. UAB
🏈 Eagles (8-1) | Mon vs. Kansas City
🏈 Steelers (6-3) | Sun vs. Cleveland
🏀 Sixers (8-3) | Fri vs. Atlanta
🏒 Penguins (8-7-0) | New Jersey 2-5 | Sat vs. Carolina
🏒 Flyers (8-7-1) | Sat vs. Vegas

The Pennsylvania Society
Do you have a reception scheduled during PA Society weekend on Dec. 1-2? Let us know at so we can add it to our list to be published next week.

Happy Birthday
Cake and candles for Sen. Jay Costa, former Gov. Tom Wolf and former U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey (Fri.) and Rep. Jared Solomon (Sat.).

Start Your Day Smart
Subscribe to the PoliticsPA Playbook. It’s free and gives you all today’s PA political headlines in an easy-to-read format. All by 8 AM.

Top Story

1. AIPAC Targets Lee, Other Members of ‘Squad’

Rep. Summer Lee

“The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is looking to invest up to $100 million in the 2024 election cycle and is targeting a Pennsylvania congresswoman among others.

According to Slate, AIPAC is aiming to assist candidates who can oust members of the so-called ‘Squad’ from Congress, including Rep. Summer Lee (PA-12).

What does this group have in common?

They are highly visible and popular progressive legislators of color – most of them women.” (PoliticsPA)


U.S. Rep. Lloyd Smucker Enjoys A Commanding Lead In The 11th Congressional Race. “York County voters would be forgiven for overlooking U.S. Rep. Lloyd Smucker. The incumbent Republican represents roughly half of the county — at least geographically — but he’s kept a relatively low profile, particularly compared to Scott Perry.” (York Dispatch)

Republicans Against Perry Launch Ad Campaign Targeting ‘Persuadable’ Voters In His District. “WelcomePAC, in conjunction with Republicans Against Perry, which it unveiled last month, is now waging a five-figure text and social media campaign just under a year before the November 2024 general election.” (PennLive)

The PA Attorney General’s Race Is Getting Even Messier With A New Contender. “The Republican primary for Pennsylvania attorney general, already a messy affair, will add a new contender come Monday, Clout hears. Katayoun “Kat” Copeland, a career prosecutor and former Delaware County district attorney, is expected to declare her candidacy then.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)


2. Pay Attention To These Competitive PA Congressional Races As 2024 Heats Up

Flood of mail-in ballots in Pa. spurs fight to change deadlines - WHYY

“Now that the 2023 election has wrapped up, all eyes are on 2024.

The attention of the nation will be on Pennsylvania, watching which way the state swings for president and whether Sen. Bob Casey will hold onto his seat against David McCormick as Democrats defend a slim majority in the Senate.

And across the state, a number of congressional seats will be hotly-contested.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)


McClinton Celebrates Passage of Legislation Protecting Abortion Care in PA. “State House Speaker Joanna McClinton is touting the chamber’s swift passage of legislation that would protect women seeking abortion care in Pennsylvania from being criminally penalized by other states.” (PoliticsPA)

Pennsylvania’s Election Audit Starts With A Roll Of The Dice. “What do Bruce Springsteen and the start of Pennsylvania’s election audits have in common? Just another roll of the dice.” (City & State)

Gov. Josh Shapiro Is Appointing New Members To PA’s Charter Appeals Board. That Could Mean More School Choice Options. “The board has been controversial: Traditional public school advocates object to its ability to circumvent local school board decisions, while charter advocates see it as essential to ensure due process.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)

PA Set To Pay Out Settlement Of Sexual Harassment Claim Against Former Shapiro Cabinet Member. “The state Treasury Department has received formal requests for payments totaling $295,000 tied to the settlement of a sexual harassment claim against a former Shapiro administration cabinet member.” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

PA Expands Public Records Requirements Over Penn State, Temple, Lincoln And Pitt. “Several leading Pennsylvania universities that receive millions of dollars in state aid must publicly disclose more records about their finances, employment and operations, under legislation signed Thursday by Gov. Josh Shapiro.” (AP)

Pennsylvania GOP Still Struggling With Mail-In Ballots. “The 2023 election results plainly showed that Republicans in the Commonwealth are still so far behind Democrats in using mail-in ballots that catching up may take years.” (Broad + Liberty)

Around The Commonwealth

3. How Zappala Won While Rockey Lost, According To The Republican Who Polled Both Races

“There was always a narrow path for Allegheny County’s longtime Democratic district attorney to win re-election as the Republican nominee. There was an even narrower path for a Republican to be elected county executive.

Stephen A. Zappala Jr. threaded the needle. Joe Rockey didn’t.” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)


Should Innamorato Tackle Allegheny County Property Reassessments, The Third Rail Of Local Politics? “Sara Innamorato was elected as Allegheny County Executive just last week. But winning a grueling race in which she was badly outspent, and triumphed by a razor-thin 2 percentage points, might have been the easy part. Especially when it comes to one of the most contentious issues during the campaign: property tax reassessment.” (WESA Politics)

Shapiro Defends Free Speech Rights Of Anti-Israel Protesters. “Gov. Josh Shapiro renewed his disdain Thursday for the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel, but defended the right of people who support Hamas and Palestinians to peacefully protest.” (Scranton Times-Tribune)

DuBois City Manager, Former Secretary Federally Indicted On Charges Of Conspiracy, Fraud. “Suspended DuBois City Manager John “Herm” Suplizio and former city administrative secretary Roberta Shaffer have been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on charges of conspiracy and federal program fraud, U.S. Attorney Eric G. Olshan announced Thursday.” (DuBois Courier Express)

Lafayette College In Probe Over Alleged Antisemitic Incidents. “The Department of Education has launched investigations into seven schools, including Lafayette College, after reports of antisemitism and Islamophobia since the Oct. 7 Israel-Hamas conflict.” (Allentown Morning Call)


4. What They’re Saying

  • Should Biden Run Again Or Step Aside? Here’s Some Guidance From History. (John A. Tures)
  • The Supreme Court, George Santos And The Vanishing Art Of Ethics. (Lori Falce)
  • Gov. Shapiro Has A Unique Opportunity To Continue Leading On Public Education. (Diana Polson)
  • Saving The Grand Old Party. (Colin Hanna)
  • Who Are The Real Extremists in Education? (Beth Ann Rosica)
  • Even Laura Ingraham Embarrassed by GOP Brats. (Chris Kelly)
  • John Fetterman’s Courageous Support For Israel. (Kimberly Ross)
1 Thing

5. A Turkey You Don’t Have To Cook

This Soft Pretzel Turkey Is What Every Thanksgiving Needs

“Brothers Brian and Shaun Kean have kept customers riveted at their Philly Pretzel Factory franchise in Langhorne for 17 years with their extraordinary soft pretzel creations, from a salty Ben Franklin signing the Declaration of Independence to a cheesy interpretation of the Dirty Dancing lift.

“It helps break up the mo-knot-ony,” Brian Kean told me.

But once Thanksgiving rolls around, it becomes all about the birds. Yes, the Eagles of course (there’s a giant cutout of a pretzel wearing an Eagles helmet outside of their store), but also, turkeys.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Thanks for starting your morning with us.
Please invite your friends
to subscribe to the PoliticsPA Playbook

One Response

  1. So then, AIPAC targets “The Squad” because they are progressive women of color. That seems rather racist.


  • Do you agree that ByteDance should be forced to divest TikTok?

    • Yes. It's a national security risk. (60%)
    • No. It's an app used by millions and poses no threat. (40%)
    • What's ByteDance? (0%)

    Total Voters: 30

    Loading ... Loading ...
Continue to Browser


To install tap and choose
Add to Home Screen