PA-Gov Round-Up: Slowly but Surely the General Election Begins
For the Governor that means tearing off the veneer that a boatload of effective TV ads have given the Democratic front-runner. While for Wolf it means portraying himself as the popular non-politician against an incumbent Governor.
The Governor started his week with a stop in Bradford along with State Rep. Martin Causer (R-Turtlepoint). During the trip, Gov. Corbett sought to defend his record and emphasize his recent campaign slogan of “Less taxes. More jobs.”
“So the fiscal year I took office … we were missing close to $1 billion in federal funds,” Corbett explained. “I made a promise we were not going to raise taxes, and we did not raise taxes; what we did was we tightened down and everybody else tightened down.”
He also took the opportunity to both defend his policies on natural gas drilling and hit his opponent for being disingenuous.
“If you’ve been watching TV ads (for Wolf) they would imply that gas corporations don’t pay (taxes) but folks, they do,” the Governor said. “The corporate income tax has a three-pronged formula [that taxes sales and assets]”
Therefore, Gov. Corbett asserted the natural gas companies and their related industries usually pay $2 billion in taxes each year.
In addition, the Corbett-Cawley campaign sent out a link to a National Journal article titled “How Much Did You Pay for That Primary Win?”
The piece argues that while self-funding may initially help a candidate, that momentum seldom lasts. Wolf was cited as a big 2014 self-funder because of his $10 million contribution to his campaign. He was even given the supposed honor of being the figure whose photograph accompanied the article.
In their press release, the Governor’s campaign also brought up comments Wolf gave to the Patriot-News in 2008 to make the case that he is a hypocrite on the issue of self-funding.
“I could self-finance, but if a candidate has to do that he shouldn’t be a candidate,” Wolf said of a potential 2010 run for Governor.
Meanwhile, former Department of Revenue Secretary and Democratic nominee Tom Wolf took a victory lap while the party launched their first real attack of the general election.
To start the week, the Wolf campaign blasted out an email to supporters trumpeting their primary victory.
“Because of thousands of supporters like you, Tom Wolf won the primary with 57.9% of the vote (that’s 487,749 total votes) and all 67 counties,” the email stated in a colorful and photo-filled infographic.
It goes on to note that Wolf also received 88.1% of votes in York County, 60.6% in Allegheny and 48.1% of Philly voters.
“But if we want this family [the Wolf family] to fight for all Pennsylvania families and change Harrisburg,” it concluded. “Then we’ve got to keep working together to drive this campaign to victory on November 4.”
Meanwhile, it fell to the Pennsylvania Democratic Party to take shots at the incumbent. They attacked Corbett for accepting expensive gifts and quote a Patriot-News story that stated a Corbett spokesman “contends that [there] are times certain ‘gifts’ produce results for the entire state.”
To poke fun at the Governor’s expense, the email urges readers to share a photo of a gift on Facebook labeled “To Governor Tom Corbett, From Corporate Special Interests”.
Politicos, expect the temperature of this race to rise exponentially over the summer.