PA-Gov Round-Up: Controversy and Complaints
This week saw perhaps more rounds of mud-slinging than any before it. In just the last five days, the Corbett camp has sought to paint Wolf as a gun-hating violator of election law. Meanwhile, Wolf’s PAC FreshStartPA tried to embarrass the Governor about his efforts to distance himself from recently indicted Texas Gov. Rick Perry.
The primary story of the week, though, was undoubtedly the continuing saga of former education adviser to the Governor Ron Tomalis.
The Ron Tomalis episode is the type of story the Wolf campaign dreams of, but it looked as if the story would die down after Tomalis’ resignation. That is until Steve Esack’s Morning Call report pointed out that Tomalis’ year as a special adviser after leaving the cabinet netted him thousands in pension benefits.
Then, just a few days later, it was revealed that Gov. Corbett never met with Tomalis during the fourteen months he served as the Governor’s special adviser on higher education.
All these events prompted Fresh Start to release a nearly two and a half minute video to rub salt in the wounds.
When it first launched, there were many questions about just how active Fresh Start would be. It’s increasingly becoming clear that the Wolf camp was serious when they asserted it would be their own OFA. The only question is where the PA Democratic Party has been.
As would be expected, the Corbett team didn’t these attacks lying down. In fact, just minutes after Fresh Start sent out their video, the PA GOP reiterated their charge that the Wolf campaign and his PAC are violating election rules.
“The Wolf team’s intentional evasion of the merits of this complaint speaks volumes about their attitude regarding transparency,” PA Republican Party Chairman Rob Gleason said. “Tom Wolf and his campaign committees were caught red-handed violating Pennsylvania’s Election Code, and they have yet to deny any wrongdoing. Instead of admitting their mistake and focusing on increasing their transparency, Tom Wolf’s campaign committee sent out a half-hearted email to try to spin their way out of this mess.”
“Tom Wolf has spent his entire campaign hiding his past from the voters, so it come as no surprise that he’s trying to hide his political tricks now,” Gleason continued. “Tom Wolf needs to understand that no amount of spin can change the fact he’s been violating Pennsylvania’s election laws. It’s time for Tom Wolf to come forward and open up to the voters about why he’s feels it’s ok to dodge Pennsylvania’s laws while he’s running for Governor.”
At this moment, it is impossible to say whether Ron Tomalis will remain an issue throughout the fall. Although it does seem safe to declare that the tone of the campaigns will not change until after Election Day.