Post-Election Ups & Downs

The election is over and the dust has settled. Here’s who stood out on Tuesday and who wants a redo.

Tom Corbett. Voters sent lots of mixed signals on Tuesday, re-election incumbents of both parties. But one clear message is this: Corbett is on notice. Almost every office that switched parties in Pa. – namely Attorney General and 3 state Senate seats – were referenda on the Governor. From his tough, hold the line budgets, to his handling of Jerry Sandusky, Democrats are chomping at the bit to challenge him and may now score a top tier recruit to do it.

SDCC. The campaign arm of the Pa. Senate Democrats has been maligned for years as ineffective – a destination for patronage favorites. Not any more. Under the leadership of Sen. Daylin Leach and ED Aren Platt, the committee went 100% professional this cycle and scored 3 seats – the biggest pickup for Dems since 1970.

SP&R and GOP pollsters. A lot of Republicans lost on Tuesday for a lot of different reasons. But the main reason so few of them saw it coming was bad polls. Their optimistic assumptions – that Obama’s 2008 would be too depressed to show up again in 2012 – were dead wrong. Those mistakes infected their polling and resulted in millions of dollars being misspent. In Pa., the poster child for the mistake was Susquehanna Polling and Research, the pollster of the PAGOP.

Mike Fitzpatrick. He was supposed to be vulnerable. Democrats targeted him above any other Pa. Republican in Congress this cycle. He won by 13 points: on par with Mike Kelly and outperforming Charlie Dent. Don’t be surprised if Dems decide to give him a pass in 2014; he term-limited himself and won’t run in 2016 when they might score a cheaper pickup.

HRCC. A lot of things broke for the Democrats this cycle: GOP-friendly redistricting maps were thrown out, Gov. Corbett’s approval numbers sank, and Obama’s name on the ballot would be a big boost in SEPA. But the House Republican Campaign Committee held firm, thanks in large part to a dominant fundraising effort. The GOP will likely either lose net 1 seat or stay even in the state House, meaning that they’ll keep their sizeable majority.

Challengers. After kicking out huge numbers of incumbents in 2006, 2008 and 2010, Pa. voters finally decided to let lawmakers and officials stay at work for a bit. The state voted out exactly 2 incumbents Tuesday, Mark Critz (D) and Tom Quigley (R). The fate of two more – Rick Saccone and Justin Simmons – will be clear soon. That’s on top of 7 in the primary. All other party flips were offices where the incumbent is retiring. That’s a maximum of 11 in a year that 249 offices went to the vote.

OFA. Instead of big drop-offs in turnout in Philly or among young voters or minorities, those numbers stayed on par with 2008 levels. That didn’t happen by accident. Obama’s grassroots campaign won even the begrudging respect of Republicans across Pa. Tuesday.

Tweet of the Week: J.D. Prose of the Beaver County Times.

He… was ahead of the curve vis-a-vis polling.


14 Responses

  1. First of @ProudAmericanProudVet, Amen to that and thanks for putting it so well.

    Second, if any organization in this election cycle deserved a down arrow, it is HDCC. Sorry you missed that one. There is absolutely no valid excuse for not taking back the PA House this cycle.

  2. @Mary- you are exactly what is wrong with this country. Your ignorance is clearly apparent in your post, and, as a veteran, I am enjoying a day off from work due to the holiday. As a result, I’ve got a little extra time today, so I will take it upon myself to educate you.

    1) Let’s start with the most obvious bit of vile misrepresentation in your post. In addition to being a vet, I am also a proud union member. I worked on election day just like the vast majority of my union brethren. As a working person yourself, I bet you enjoy having a 40-hour work week, earning at least a minimum wage and knowing that if you get hurt on the job, your employer can’t get rid of you while you are getting better. On behalf of union members everywhere: YOU’RE WELCOME.
    2) I have no idea what you are getting at with disability insurance. When someone is disabled, they are just that: unable to perform their job because of an injury. My wife of more than 30 years was injured very badly at her job as a nurse, when a mentally ill patient attacked her. My wife’s employer was actually wonderful to her. They actually helped her and supported her every step of the way. She can’t work now, and receives disability. She worked as a registered nurse for nearly 40 years when she became disabled and prior to that, had never accepted so much as a dime from the system. It is only right that, after all those years, she receive the benefit, having paid into it all those years. She would love to go back to nursing, as she loved her job, which to her was always more a calling than a vocation. Yes, she was proud to cast her vote for the President, along with tens of millions of working people across the country. She didn’t give up her right to vote when she became disabled. For you to assume she should is as shameful as it is shortsighted. Further, rates of disability have nothing to
    do with who is in power. Disability doesn’t discriminate on the basis of political party,or socio-economic status. I wish I could say the same for you.
    3) The GOP spent 8 years screwing up our economy, so it is true that there are a lot of long-term unemployed. If the taxation and economic policies Mr. Romney espoused, and which are nearly identical to the Bush administration’s, worked, we never would have gotten into this recession in the first place.
    4) There is federally-imposed, lifetime limit of about 5 years on welfare. No one can stay on it longer than that. You need to disavow yourself of that belief immediately. People receiving assistance have fallen on hard times. Don’t judge them for that. It could be you someday.

    Your post is indicative of the problems the Republican Party is faces. Prior to 2000, I was a Republican for more than 20 years. It went from being a party of economic responsibility and smaller government to being a bunch of hate and fear mongers. They pander to the far right at the expense of the rest of us. They either need to wise up, become more inclusive and less dependent upon the politics of hate or they face becoming increasingly irrelevant.

  3. I sincerely doubt Mr. Fitzpatrick will actually leave office in 2016 as he promised. Maybe he’ll prove me wrong, but I doubt it.

  4. I have been on the record as not being a fan of the Governor’s leadership style and many of his actions and failure to act on items as a governor. He is certainly not the great communicator to the people of the Commonwealth.

    In fairness, much can be attributed to the fact he is a prosecutor by nature. He has done what he promised the people he would do as governor as far as the budget, and seeing how PA is headed toward the fiscal cliff, that can not be overlooked.

    The reason why prosecutors have such high conviction rates is that they generally make sure they have solid cases that will prevail before they bring them. In the case of bringing a case against Penn State which involved icons, to bring a case before all the ducks were in a row may have well led to a different outcome. It is a tough decision, but not to prevail in a case that is pushed ahead before it is ready is a miscarriage of justice.

    No one has any use for child abuse or abuse by authority figures. Now that Sandusky is convicted. look at the other prosecutions that are coming down the pike. If the case had been rushed through on emotion before all the ducks were in a row, would the end result be the same?

    TC was certainly an underlying factor in this years election. A glance at the primary results on the democrat side indicated that it may be, and it was. Kane won because of the underlying assumption that she would go after TC. It was predictable. It also increased voter turnout on the Democrat side.

  5. Simmons race is over, Kevin Deely is an English teacher not a math teacher so he doesn’t know it yet. Simmons has a 431 vote lead with 99 military ballots to be counted. Even (BIG) IF Deely takes them all he still loses. Simmons beat Deely 60 -40 in the suburbs. Fortunately for Simmons the takers in the city didn’t out number the payers in the suburbs.

  6. I sure Hope Kane takes Corbett to Cour for Obstruction Of Justice Perjury and the many other Crimes he comitted in Holding up The Prosecution Of Sandusky Many Kids were Victims that did not have to be had Corbett Taken Sandusky off the Streets Right away Shame on you Mr Corbett you belong in Jail in the same cell as Sandusky I hope Kane is Able and makes it happen

  7. It is no real surprise that Democrats can have a great ground game. With the number of them on unemployment, disability insurance, welfare or working for unions who let them do this kind of work for pay, not to mention the number of them on all of that government support who can wait all day to vote rather than needing to get to a JOB, the current system does not discriminate against people without ID, it discriminates against people who have to work for a living to pay for all of the government benefits paid to everyone else.

  8. @Militant Republican Moderate,
    The writing’s on the wall. Two of the Commissioners (1D and 1R) had a coup the day after the election, taking the chair from a nut job and installing themselves as co-chairs.

    Also, it was 75 minority inspectors that were wrongfully excluded.

  9. Philadelphia should get a down. Forcing 20 Minority Inspectors to go to court to be seated is unconscionable. The explanation that, “this is the way we do things in Philly” is embarrassing. I wonder what the real vote in Philadelphia was. It will be interesting to see what happens with Voter ID and further reforms at the Board of Commissioners for Mayoral Primary.

  10. Val DiGiorgio, Chesco GOP Chair should get an “up,” respectfully: Chesco carried for Romney, led state in voter contacts, and actively and successfully engaged in keeping all Chesco state house seats in GOP control.

Comments are closed.

  • When Should The Special Elections For The PA House Be Held?

    • May 16, 2023 (Primary Day) (51%)
    • March, 2023 (47%)
    • April, 2023 (2%)

    Total Voters: 173

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