Report: Burn Considering Primary Challenge to Gov. Wolf

burn-wolfJim Burn continues to be a thorn in Governor Wolf’s side.

When Wolf won the Democratic primary two years ago, he sought to appoint his own party chief. Burn refused to step aside and Wolf set up his own operation instead.

Eventually, though, Burn was pushed out in favor of current Chair Marcel Groen although he’s never really gone away.

Now Chris Potter of the Post-Gazette is reporting that Burn is considering challenging Wolf in next year’s Democratic primary for Governor.

“There’s a lot of anger in the party out there with the failure of leadership to hold this state,” Burn told Potter. “It’ll be tough enough for an incumbent to win, and you don’t want a divisive primary that makes that even harder. Anyone who thinks the party doesn’t need a reboot, or that it hasn’t failed in paying attention to the demographics in Western Pennsylvania, is fooling themselves.”

Chairman Groen, not surprisingly, is unimpressed.

“I think Jim’s lost touch with reality,” Groen told Potter.

31 Responses

  1. Dinano is a dick. He belongs to nothing but his moms basement fan club. Has nothing to do with Democrat party.
    Depasqules was a delegate, had a pass each day. Wolfpack had 87 passes that they gave out to staff of governor and family and friends. No democrat. special favors of wolf not the party
    staff did nothing but drink and fly awound the state with the governoer.on tax payer dime??? election week planning party instead of working.
    What are the party staff being paid? Demand to know demand to know what they do.
    statewide races won beacsue they had no help from wolf and his bimbos.hillary Katie lost because state party wolf staff sabotaged evrymoveemnt
    burn loves his three friends they will help him win. wagner follow wolf staff see the laws they break politics on work time.
    wolf and bimobos destroy everything they look at. Mary have another drink or 15 falling down crying drunk
    demand to know what ed of party does what wolf does.

  2. I guess the fact that Dems swept the row offices, all outperforming the top of the ticket, doesn’t count for anything? And Trump won by little more than 70,000 votes, less than a quarter of a percent. As tempting as it may be, let’s not over-read the data. A lot of those Trump voters are going to be even more cynical and drop back out once they realize Trump can’t – and, in fact, has likely never really wanted or planned – to keep even a fraction of his promises, not even to get into how his policies actually hurt them. They got played by a con artist and that’s going to burn.

    I am reasonably confident (as confident as anyone can be in these times) that Wolf gets re-elected in 2018 and Trump goes down hard in 2020, assuming he isn’t removed from office before then, taking a lot of Rs down with him. I figure, let them enjoy their moment, because, as Pennsylvanians, we’ve all seen what an ignorant, arrogant executive who doesn’t respect the balance of power or other leaders of his own party looks like when paired with a discordant, gerrymandered Republican legislative majority. As history demonstrates, Republicans are much better at obstructionism than governance. That people like Scott Wagner are hitching their wagons to Trump is going to prove a gift, and likely pretty soon.

  3. Marcel Groen has done a good job as Chairman. Unfortunately, he is stuck with an Executive Director who knows nothing about State Committee. Her job is to get Wolf reelected. If she uses the same strategy to get Wolf elected as she did with Hillary, Governor Wolf is toast. He needs to start over with his inner circle and replace them with qualified people.

  4. Everybody can go to the Green party for all we care so long as we can keep our stooges on the turdpike commission and keep raking in the cash.

  5. “Torsella DePasquale weren’t even given DNC credentials.” what kind of insult is that ? how stupid and foolish of the Rendellian Powers that Be. after buying the US Senate primary and forcing out burn, the Powers wonder why they cannot count on any ground game from the previously-loyal worker bees. well, our opinions apparently don’t count to the Powers any more. the state’s going red, and i’m going independent.

  6. Porter…it’s not about politics, it’s all about business. We are all in it for the money. From turnpike graft to high figure bond issues, elections are just about what’s in it for us. Pay attention to what Saint Donald is about to pull off. The country is headed for a fire sale…better buy in now.

  7. Can anyone on this site even name their state committee person? My apologies, but my point is that the idea that state committee is some crack unit of political experts is a bit of a stretch. My county has a convicted criminal as one of ours. This story is inside baseball and the average voter just wants to know if the Democrats still represent the interests of working people. The fact that is even a question is a sad state of affairs.

  8. Forget I said that. I Meant to post under my stage name…Linda Lovelace. I hope Uncle Charley doesn’t see that comment. I could go on his list.

  9. Relevant only to the Zappala Crime Family when he could hustle a bond issue or shill for Junior. They only need him now as a stalking horse for the next chump…then he can feel the burn when they have no use for him at all.

  10. A continued and sustained pitiful search for relevance.

    I won’t believe he’s running until he releases another hostage video saying so.

  11. Out of touch with reality? Marcel and the rest of his ilk better wake up quickly. Constantly pushing left wing out of touch candidates on pa voters coupled with a complete inability to raise money from any place not named Philadelphia has crippled the Democratic Party. They fail to realize that state committee members from rural areas are the left of the left and the rest of the state respects and admires middle of the road conservative Dems. Pick a pro police pro military pro 2nd amendment social progressive with an economic populist message and the Dems will win every race. no more McGinty, Wolfe, Rendell acolytes.

  12. Let’s hold off on the “PA is going so Red so Fast it’s gonna be YUUUUGE.” Dems won AG, Auditor and Treasurer, which is pretty remarkable when you consider how the last Dem AG and Treasurer ended up.

  13. “FYI” is wrong. Republican congressional candidates won millions more votes than the Democratic candidates.

    It’s amazing to me that, more than two weeks later, Democrats still refuse to look in the mirror and question how they could have performed so poorly with DONALD FREAKING TRUMP at the top of the GOP ticket.

  14. Fetterman is a whack-a-doo. Please run him. Make the Democratic Party dumpster fire burn just a little hotter and longer.

  15. Whoever the Dems put up it does not matter. The GOP will be taking this state back. As long as, the republicans put up anyone stronger than Corbett, and let’s be honest that is almost everyone, they will take the governorship.

  16. Fetterman is the only hope for statewide victory for some office but he has no money. . casey is a nice guy but too weak to hold his seat. DSCC will pour money in to try to hold the Casey seat. we know how well the money worked for mc G – Toomey. ..

  17. FYI-

    If your criticism of Jim is that he thought state committee was the party and not the voters, then you MUST be pissed at Wolf and Groen.

    The State committee members were elected by the voters in May 2014, and they (and they alone) were responsible for picking the party chairman. They voted for Burn and rejected McGinty.

    Now, Wolf’s position was that HE was the party, and not the duly elected committee members, so he should pick the party chairman.

    Groen’s position (so far) has been that he is the committee, he doesn’t like votes on his decisions, and he wants to rule by fiat and backroom deals.

    So, FYI, surely you must more upset with Wolf and Groen.

    I do agree that we need to end gerrymandering. But, that means taking back the state legislature and instituting fair redistricting that uses census data and no party affiliations and drawn by computers for compactness.

    Wolf isn’t the guy to help take back seats. He has shown little interest in helping in that area.

    We do need a Dem, but someone better/tougher than Wolf.

  18. Haha… This is pathetic.

    Everyone please see this for what this really is… Jim Burn grasping for 15 minutes of fame. He desperately wants attention, always has and always will. He follows in the footsteps of Joe Sestak and Rob McCord in being a narcissist and ego-maniac. Burn doesn’t care about the party, he cares about himself. He believed State Committee was and is the “party” not the voters. Let’s get real, Jim got lucky that he served as PA Dems Chairman during Obama’s presidency and thus down ballot candidates benefitted.

    Everyone on here needs to wake up. Senate races met the same fate as the presidential race. Senate races were so nationalized. Here’s the proof:

    Where Hillary won, Democratic Senate Nominees won:
    Hillary won NH > Hassan (D) defeat Ayotte (R)
    Hillary won NV > Cortez Masto (D) defeat Heck (R)

    Where Hillary lost, Democratic Senate Nominees lost:
    Hillary lost WI > Feingold (D) lost to Johnson (R)
    Hillary lost IN > Bayh (D) lost to Young (R)
    Hillary lost PA > McGinty (D) lost to Toomey (R)
    Hillary lost NC > Ross (D) lost to Burr (R)

    Facts are facts: A weak top of the ticket effects all races tied to it or nationalized by it. Period. Comey doomed HRC and all Senate candidates.

    in 2016:
    More Americans voted for Hillary for President than Trump
    More Americans voted for Democratic Senate Candidates than Republicans
    More Americans voted for Democratic House Candidates than Republicans

    in 2018:
    It all depends on how Trump performs, if he doesn’t perform well 2018 could be a 2006/2008 Democratic wave again.

    Everyone needs to stop freaking out. The most important thing is making sure Wolf gets reelected and we put an end to gerrymandering.

  19. Porter Randolph-

    The fate of the committee chairmen in the other states is up to their committee members.

    But, here’s the simple smell test for any argument supporting Marcel: if Hillary had won PA, would he have been tooting his horn and taking credit for his “great leadership”?

    (Hint: no, sh*t, he’d be taking credit)

    So, he should also take his lumps. He sure blamed Burn for everything he could (even blaming Jim for damage that Marcel and Wolf purposely caused/sabotaged to make Jim look bad).


    Wolf is certainly going to have difficulty in 2018 (unless he doesn’t run, and activates the plan to run Josh).

    I see Stack as a potential Gov candidate for 2018.

  20. Torsella Depasquale carried their own water. That’s why they won. Shapiro also by fundraising although not loved; he is liked. @Diano is correct. Wolfs election if he persists in not reorganizing and changing his own behavior will result in McGinty numbers and a defeat. Torsella DePasquale wernt even given DNC credentials. They had to beg for access. If Mary Isenhour persists down this road of ignorance and retaliation every D in the state is vulnerable. Someone explain this to WOLF because he thinks Mary and Rendell are the cats pajamas. Everyone who can help has offered to no avail THEY WONT LET ANYONE IN!! Arrogant state contract hoarders and recycled millionaire RENDELL hacks

  21. Clinton was a weak as shit candidate. Is Groen responsible Clinton losing Michigan and Wisconsin too? Groen wasn’t involved when Bill signed NAFTA and he didn’t tell Clinton to disparage coal or get mixed up with TPP. PA state candidates won, that was his job, mission accomplished.

  22. It don’t matter who is elected because they all take care of tax free agriculture. Hunting and fishing is done for and corruption is ongoing especially here in Schuylkill County.

  23. tommyd-

    Actually, I heard complaints from candidates that Marcel was focused more on Shapiro and ignoring some other candidates.

    But, still:
    1) As state chairman, he should have been aware of the pulse in rural counties and pushed resources there instead of bunching them up and too many multiple contacts with solid Hillary supporters who were already sold on her.

    2) What was his stated reason/motivated to take over the party? What was he supposed to accomplish that Jim couldn’t?

    I’m pretty sure that he promised to deliver PA for Hillary, and that if Hillary won, he’d be stepping down to take a position in her administration. (The persistent rumor has been that he wanted to be the ambassador to the Netherlands.)

    So, if it’s true that he would have stepped down after a victory, surely he must step down after presiding over the first PA presidential election loss in 28 years?

    Otherwise, what is the criteria to declare his “reign” a success/failure?

    Finally, the consistent conclusion from the election results is that the party needs new/young blood running it to understand/motivate millennials, and to focus on bringing the rural, blue collar Dems back to the party.

    Marcel and his brand of machine politics are exactly what the current analysis is blaming.

  24. Nonsense, David. Hillary lost Pennsylvania because she forgot what Bill knew: “It’s the economy, Stupid.” And because The Philadelphia Democratic machine has alienated the rest of the state.

    If you’re going to blame Groen for Hillary’s loss, must you not credit Groen for Shapiro, DePasquale and Torsella?

  25. I believe there’s an appropriate analogy here that likens the Democratic Party to a dumpster fire? I think we may have heard it used in another context?

  26. Oh reat, a food fight among the Democrats who will be lucky to win even if united. Stronger Together?? Definitely not stronger apart.

  27. What level of responsibility does Marcel Groen accept for Pennsylvania’s first presidential loss since 1988?

    The “reality” is that Wolf and Marcel pushed Jim out, and cashed in on the nepotism, deals, perks, schmoozing and spotlight that went with the DNC convention, and then failed to deliver the goods for Hillary when it counted.

    Now, I don’t expect Wolf to resign as Governor over this, but he certainly (and repeatedly) has shown his lack of political acumen.

    As a matter of principle, Marcel should resign immediately. (If he had a time machine, he should set the dial back two weeks and resign Nov 9th.)

    The State committee should have an open election to select a new chairman and Wolf should completely stay out of the selection process, but show up to congratulate and support the winner (instead of boycotting the state committee like a little child who didn’t get way, as he did in 2014 and 2015).

  28. This state is falling completely to the GOP next election. Wolf and Casey are done and it is going to be a full red state within two years.

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