PA-Lt. Gov: Stack May Try to Keep Senate Seat as Lt. Governor

Mike-StackWell, this is certainly a curve ball.

According to a report from Chris Hepp of the Philadelphia Inquirer, State Senator Mike Stack may try to keep his seat even if the Wolf-Stack ticket wins.

So he would be both Lt. Governor and State Senator from the 5th district.

“I’m not counting it out,” Stack said. “It will be something that needs to be discussed and addressed, but first things first.”

Stack pointed out that this has happened twice before. Senate Pro Tempores Jubelirer and Scarnati both moved up in 2001 and 2008 when a vacancy in the Lt. Gov. chair occurred.

Neither of those men ever ran for Lieutenant Governor, however, so the situation begs the question: why would you run for a new job if you still want to keep your old one?

It’s far from clear that Stack would act on this. In fact, this may just be a trial balloon to see what the public, the press and perhaps his running mate think about the idea.

Still, with the election less than two weeks away, this is likely to become a last-minute campaign issue.

Update: The Corbett-Cawley campaign has even weighed in Stack’s proposal, suggesting that he is keeping his options open in case of defeat.

“You can tell middle class Pennsylvanians are extremely worried about multimillionaire Tom Wolf’s income tax hike when even his running mate Senator Mike Stack is keeping his options open for a second job,” said Communications Director Chris Pack. “While Mike Stack is likely far from middle class, given Tom Wolf’s pledge to increase spending by $6.5 billion with no way to pay for it besides tripling the income tax rate, we can’t really blame him for being concerned and looking for a second job. Rest assured though Mike – when Tom Corbett and Jim Cawley are re-elected on November 4th, they are going to continue to keep their promise to make Harrisburg fiscally responsible and keep taxes low for all Pennsylvanians.”

October 23rd, 2014 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Governor, Harrisburg, Top Stories | 12 Comments

12 thoughts on “PA-Lt. Gov: Stack May Try to Keep Senate Seat as Lt. Governor”

  1. Barricks Einwohner says:

    Corbett spokesperson, Jose Jimenez, aka Cgris Martinez, assured everyone that “bill frawley” will be retained as Lt. Governor. I loved William Frawley in Miracle on 34th Street. His explaination of politics to Gene Lockhart’s character is priceless.

  2. PA DEMS says:

    Just shows what a narcissistic, ego maniac, POS this guy is. Thank God, the Lt. Gov position is the end of the road politically for anyone. Hope you burn where you’re going Stack.

  3. Ryan says:

    Anyone else get the feeling Wolf wishes this shotgun wedding did not happen?

  4. Sophie says:

    @Adam B Thanks!

  5. Chris Martinez says:

    mark stark aint gonna getta chance to be loutenant goevenor and senitor at same time cuz goevnor corbitt and louten goevenor bill frawley are gonna win in a land slide witch meens mark stark gonna remane the senitore,

  6. ProudDem? says:

    What is wrong with this guy? He is a facelifted egomaniac who “beat” candidates that worked much harder than he because his mother gave him enough money to saturate the airwaves. He is still being looked at for voting on casino matters in the Senate where his family personally profited. Now this?! Give it up Mike – you bought the LG spot – now you want to get two paychecks? Sit down in the LG chair in the Senate, shut up and do the right thing and get Tom Wolf’s agenda passed in the Senate. Isn’t that why we all voted for you?

  7. David Diano says:

    So, in the case of a tie, does he get to be the tie-breaking vote as well?

  8. Adam B says:

    http://caselaw.findlaw.com/pa-commonwealth-court/1280907.html#sthash.GdMMXS8E.dpuf

    The operative question regarding Article IV, Section 6 is whether the position of Senator is an “office” for purposes of this Section’s provisions, thereby prohibiting any Senator, in “office,” from becoming or acting as the Lieutenant Governor.   We hold that it is not.   First, to hold that it is, would place this constitutional provision in direct conflict with Article II, Section 9 (authorizing the President pro tempore to assume the role of Lieutenant Governor when that office “shall be vacant”) and Article IV, Section 14 (directing that the President pro tempore vacate his seat only if he shall become Governor because the office of Lieutenant Governor is vacant).   Second, while, at first blush, there may be a tendency to equate a member of the General Assembly with an “officer” for purposes of Article IV, Section 6, one distinction is that members of the General Assembly generally may not be removed, save by members of their own body.   Additionally, the various constitutional provisions themselves draw a distinction between being a member of the General Assembly and holding office.   See, e.g., Article II, Section 7 (“[n]o person hereafter convicted of embezzlement of public moneys, bribery, perjury or other infamous crime, shall be eligible to the General Assembly, or capable of holding any office of trust or profit in this Commonwealth”);  Article VI, Section 3 (“Senators, Representatives and all judicial, State and county officers shall, before entering on the duties of their respective offices, take and subscribe the following oath or affirmation ․”)  Repeatedly, where there are references to holding office, members of the General Assembly are listed separately in matters where other officials are not separately identified.

  9. Sophie says:

    @Brittany I get the distinction, but it still seems directly at odds with the section you cited. I guess I’ll go look up the opinion.

  10. Brittany says:

    @Sophie those were constitutionally mandated successions, neither took the position by election.

  11. Sophie says:

    @Brittany I agree, that seems ironclad, but it would also seem to rule out the two times it’s actually happened before, once upheld by the Commonwealth Court…

  12. Brittany says:

    Actually, he’s not constitutionally able to do both:

    Disqualification for Offices of Governor, Lieutenant Governor and Attorney General
    Section 6.
    No member of Congress or person holding any office (except of attorney-at-law or in the National Guard or in a reserve component of the armed forces of the United States) under the United States or this Commonwealth shall exercise the office of Governor, Lieutenant Governor or Attorney General.

Comments are closed.