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PA-Gov: Wolf Recalls Brown Nomination, Senate Votes Him Down Anyway

wolf-sadGovernor Tom Wolf finally gave up the fight over Marcus Brown.

In a surprising turn of events, however, the State Senate wouldn’t let Wolf off that easily.

Wolf’s nominee for Police Commissioner ran into trouble when opponents criticized Brown for wearing a uniform despite the fact that he never served in a police force. When a neighbor put up signs criticizing Brown for this, the nominee tore them up. He was under threat of being charged for the action but was eventually cleared.

“This morning, I submitted to the Senate a recall of Col. Marcus Brown’s nomination as commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police,” Gov. Wolf stated. “I continue to have full faith in Col. Brown’s ability to lead the State Police, and he will remain as acting commissioner.”

“It is common practice for governors to recall nominations to allow time for additional discussion, and historically the Senate honors a governor’s decision. In recent history, three governors – Governors Casey, Rendell, and Corbett – have recalled four cabinet nominations and the Senate has honored those decisions,” he concluded.

The State Senate, though, didn’t want to let the issue go. They went ahead with the vote and rejected Brown 26-22. Three Republicans, including former leader Dominic Pileggi, crossed party lines to vote for the nominee.

15 Responses

  1. My only comment is why didn’t someone do their homework to counter the notion that only someone who graduates from the State Police Academy can wear the uniform, I quick internet search shows at least 2 previous commissioners wore the uniform and came from outside law enforcement agencies.

  2. Its not politics it’s right vs. wrong. Brown was not certified in any police academy in Pa. and never learned Pa criminal or vehicle codes (at the very minimum). Therefore he was not entitled to wear the uniform or carry a weapon. This is a State law not a political football as some would suggest. I agree Wolf’s staff blew this and someone was trying to save face. He’s not qualified period. Time for a new nominee.

  3. Wolf is too busy holding childish grudges and trying to undermine the elected Chair of his political party’s State Committee (and disrespecting its members) to be bothered with trivial little things like picking a decent Cabinet and running the state.

  4. Wolf should have seen this coming or else his staff didn’t do their homework. Who takes the blame for this one?

  5. Wise up Delco. Everyone knows Quigley is going to try and use his pen to regulate what should be in the purview of the legislature. Despite this, even republicans gave Wolf his choice anyway. But for some reason this guy is deceptive in his testimony and doesn’t pass the in-person smell test and he is the victim of republican politics? Who are you kidding?

  6. It’s naïve to believe that the GOP votes for Brown were something more than shrewd. Checks and balances won today. Hopefully the Constitution will be respected tomorrow and once Brown turns the office light out tonight there should be nothing more to say on the matter.

  7. @ Unsanctioned R – Difficult to find what it is you are referring to – News reports seem to indicated Republican concerns that:
    -Brown, 50, has voiced liberal notions of law enforcement that have rankled gun rights groups and troopers in a conservative law enforcement agency that is one of the nation’s largest and an influential force in the Pennsylvania Capitol.
    -Gun rights proponents also quickly flagged Brown’s support for Maryland’s tighter firearm and ammunition restrictions, signed into law by O’Malley, while Brown was state police superintendent.

    These all seem to be ideological items and do not indicate a legitimate question concerning the Colonel’s ability to preform the job. The PA GOP has now unduly politicized the PA State Police in yet another attempt as petty gamesmanship to achieve some perceived political gain.

    Unfortunately, while the Adult caucus in the Senate GOP (Pileggi, Greenleaf, et al) saw it for what it was and courageously voted to approve the nominee, they were unable to convince the Cowards caucus (McGarrigle, Tomlinson, McIlhenny, Rafferty) to grow a set, and stand up to the real GOP leader, Senator Wagner.

    This is truly shocking, and clearly indicates that Pennsylvania as a whole will suffer the Republican legislature’s petty political and ideological fits as it endeavors to make government dysfunctional. This will be a long hot summer in Harrisburg!

    Keep fighting Governor Wolf.

  8. Brown’s record in Maryland of deferring to the governor instead of the constitution is great grounds to vote “no.”

  9. When will Governor Weak Knees Wolf fire his incompetent staff starting with Katie McGinty? They are far behind where they should be and overly arrogant. Things are only going to get worse for Tommy Boy with his C-team staff.

  10. @ New Britain Big D – Not sure what you mean when you say Colonel Brown’s actions were “disgusting”? The only issue I have seen are sideline issues that appear petty like the one cited:
    -“Many Republicans have sided with the state police union, perhaps the most powerful labor group in the Capitol. The union opposes Brown’s nomination because he wears the agency’s gray uniform despite not graduating from the State Police Academy in Hershey.”
    -“In March, retired Trooper Anthony DeLuca planted signs critical of Brown’s uniform selection near Brown’s house, and video-recorded Brown removing the signs. DeLuca then reported them as stolen. Last month, Cumberland County District Attorney David Freed cleared Brown and DeLuca of wrongdoing, but said DeLuca lacked a proper township sign permit to erect the signs.”
    Not sure why these instances would be grounds for 26 Senators to interfere in the orderly functioning of the executive branch and the State Police. Is there something else? Otherwise I ask again, “Why do Republicans waste so much time on things that mean so little?”

  11. Wolf is quickly becoming Corbett Part II.

    If this reflects budget season, budget season will be going on until there is snow on the ground.

  12. Governor Wolf is still not aware that he isn’t the supreme ruler of our State. There are checks and balances and that is why the Senate and House exist. Brown should be held responsible for his disgusting actions. And to DELCO Observer I can only say that the Police Commissioner position is one of grave importance and to suggest that any party would “waste so much time on things that mean so little” is either an example of ignorance or just plain party loyalty gone wrong.

  13. He had better not be “Acting” any longer. It’s called checks and balances.

  14. Why do Republicans waste so much time on things that mean so little? These “shows” that they stage are surely not productive or conducive to a functional government. and are Clearly taking their “cue” from their masters in Washington. In any event, good to see GOP Senators Pileggi, Greenleaf and Vance were not just Sheeple of the Tea Party infused Senate GOP and exercised some independence and integrity!

  15. Did Governor McGinty really think she could ignore the Senate’s power to reject a nomination and just keep Brown on as Acting Commissioner indefinitely?

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