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October 12th Ups & Downs

A gubernatorial candidate sends out a call for help, while accusing some in his own party of undermining his campaign, a Democratic state Rep candidate places a lawn sign by a grave, and the Pennsylvania legislature is about to pass a bill dealing with organ donation. All of that and more are in this week’s Ups and Downs.

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John Fetterman and Jeff Bartos. Hey, a real debate was held in the past week in the race for Governor. Lieutenant governor candidates, Republican Jeff Bartos and Democrat John Fetterman, squared off in their one and only debate before November’s election on Saturday hosted by WPXI in Pittsburgh. The Post-Gazette dubbed the 30 minute showdown as a “cordial but lively debate” in which the candidates went to bat for the men at the top of the ticket, detailed specific policy differences, and how the role of lt. Governor should be handled. This certainly differs from the lone debate between Gov. Tom Wolf and GOP challenger Scott Wagner’s moderated by ‘Jeopardy!’ host Alex Trebek.     

Scott Wagner. The GOP candidate for Governor, who has invested $10 million into his campaign, sent out an email pleading for more funds to sustain a real presence on television ads and accused “a small number of establishment Republicans” are trying to undermine his campaign. He detailed the amount of events he’s covered thus far and described the treatment of the race as a “public-lynching.” At Trump’s rally in Erie this week, the President boasted about the work ethic of Wagner, but particularly his support earned from Judge Jeanine Pirro. Since this campaign email was sent, Pirro held a fundraiser for Wagner, in which the campaign paid her $24,500, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.  

Rep. Mike Kelly. The incumbent Republican Congressman stood side by side with President Trump this week in his home district, which voted for Trump over Sec. Clinton by 20 points, at a MAGA rally. Trump described the Pennsylvania Congressman as a friend, while Kelly said the two have a lot in common. Kelly lauded the Trump agenda in front of the raucous crowd. Despite some numbers indicating Democratic challenger, Ron DiNicola is closing the gap with some ratings outlets having the race just as “Leans Republican”, a New York Times/Siena College Live poll this week shows Kelly holding a “modest lead” of 8 points.  

Rep. Conor Lamb. A new Monmouth Poll shows the Democrat holding a steady double digit lead over Rep. Keith Rothfus (R-Allegheny). Each of the three likely voter models give Lamb 10+ leads all outside the margin of error. The most significant gain for Lamb compared to July’s poll was his increase of likely voters gained in Rothfus’s current district. 49-46 polled prefered Lamb over Rothfus in the GOP candidate’s district in July. Lamb now leads 53-43 over Rothfus in this area when asked which candidate likely voters prefer. The newly drawn 17th district includes slightly over 50% of Rothfus’s 12th District.

Sharon Guidi. The Democratic state House candidate in suburban Pittsburgh placed a lawn sign next to Andy Warhol’s tombstone. The Inquirer reports that the candidate didn’t intend to insult anyone with the sign. “When my volunteer and I visited Andy Warhol’s grave, we never intended to politicize our visit in any way whatsoever,” she said. “We are both huge fans of Warhol’s art and had no plans to share this moment with anyone but ourselves. I sincerely apologize if I offended anyone.”

Organ Donation. According to the AP, Pennsylvania is finalizing the first major update to the organ donation law that’s been in place for 25 years. Gov. Tom Wolf intends to sign the legislation, which is the result of 8 years of work.

Marty Nothstein. The Republican candidate for Pennsylvania’s 7th Congressional District is suing the Lehigh Valley velodrome and its board, along with the Allentown Morning Call claiming they conspired to publicize a confidential investigation of alleged sexual misconduct against him to influence the election, according to the Morning Call. The newspaper is standing by its reporting. A Monmouth poll from a month ago states that the closed investigation “does not appear to be impacting the overall campaign”, so why bring it back to the public’s attention in the final weeks of a campaign?


Throwing in back to a simpler time 2 years ago this week.

7 Responses

  1. Scott Wagner was the perfect local candidate to take on the GOP establishment and win back a state senate seat that had been wired for an establishment hack. Scott Wagner was the perfect stand-alone, stand-by-your-principles state senator, where he mostly raised useful questions about the role and funding of government and their impact on average taxpayers. Hardly a surprise, Scott Wagner has proven to be his own worst enemy as candidate for governor. The communication style that works well with local folks who know him is suicidal outside his hometown senate district. And yet he persists. He should never have run for governor. He had a necessary role in the state senate. Wagner’s own ego is what killed his political presence. I don’t like the guy. I volunteered on his first two campaigns, and got zero thanks. Then a year later he lied to my face about something he could have easily been forthcoming about. Scott Wagner has stuff going on inside his head that no one needs to know about. And yet…we all get to see it in this sad campaign. I would feel sorry for Scott Wagner, but he earned everything he has reaped. And I’ll bet when he is out of the senate, his enemies find a hundred ways to wound him. He’s a star in one or two of Aesop’s Fables.

  2. Wagner said he didn’t need establishment R’s to win and did everything to offend them. Now, they won’t touch him and he is forced to pay for speakers? This is NOT bad luck. His campaign is the epitome of incompetence.

  3. Pirro taking $24,500 for a fundraiser appearance for Wagner??? That’s beyond sad. Give me a break! Scott Wagner basically has to pay a speaker to come to his fundraiser??? Whatever happened to believing in a cause or giving a darn. And what is far far worse is that the only thing Trump could say about Wagner was that Pirro liked him. I’d like Wagner too if he paid me $24,500!The only legitimate expense for Pirro would be travel and she has the means to pass on that. The Scott Wagner for Governor campaign must have a curse on it or something. Everything is always bad news and the news gets worse everytime.

  • 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

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