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Schwartz: “Medicare is the reason we will win Pa”

By Geoff Middleberg, Contributing Writer

Rep. Allyson Schwartz spoke this morning with reporters at the centrist think-tank Third Way. The congresswoman covered a range of topics, most notably she said their is hope for the Democrats during Pennsylvania’s redistricting process.


Rep. Schwartz said, “I don’t think the legislature can protect their 2010 wins because they have a lot of incumbents to protect.” She added, “You might be able to add some GOP votes but there will always be swing districts in Pa.”

As the recruitment chairwoman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, Schwartz downplayed the role redistricting plays in recruiting candidates nationally. She insisted that local issues and incumbents whose policies do not match those of their constituents are better drivers of recruitment than how district lines are drawn.


It should come as no surprise that Schwartz is confident of the Democrats chances in Pa. in 2012. She said, “Medicare is the reason we will win Pa.” She was referring to the Ryan budget, which Democrats have been arguing would hurt seniors. The congresswoman underscored the fact that Pa. has the 2nd oldest electorate in the nation behind Florida and that the Medicare debate will be especially important to Pennsylvania’s voters.

The Congresswoman would like to see any changes to Medicare, entitlements in general or extensive tax code revisions go through the committee process, not be a part of the debt ceiling negotiations. On the debt ceiling negotiations, she singled out Sen. Toomey when she said, “Sen. Toomey was wrong when he said that we should pay our debters in China before we pay our Social Security beneficiaries and the military.” She is hopeful that both parties will come together and hammer out a compromise.

Super PACs

She is urging potential candidates to raise as much money as they can and she is even comfortable with Democrats creating “Super PACs”, independent groups who raise money for candidates. These “Super PACs” have come under criticism by some who believe that the groups are not transparent about who their donors are.

Although she is comfortable with these “Super PACs”, she said, “I would like to see the rules changed particularly about transparency so we know who is giving to these groups.”

PA State Budget

On the state level, the Congresswoman took the opportunity to take a swipe at Gov. Corbett’s proposed budget. She said, “Governor Corbett’s unpopularity is based on his education policies such as cutting basic education, supporting vouchers and his proposed cuts to Penn State and the University of Pittsburgh. While he walks away from the state universities, he is fine with tuition going up.”

Schwartz served nearly a decade in the PA Senate before winning her congressional seat.

Rep. Schwartz is supportive of Marcellus Shale drilling but does not understand the Governor’s position on the impact fee. She pointed out that gas companies have said they would be supportive of an extraction fee, and yet, the Governor has repeatedly said he would not support such a fee. The representative does, however, want to ensure that natural gas drilling is safe, so that in her words, “we can make sure that the water downstream [from the wells] is safe.”

6 Responses

  1. Schwartz served in the Senate of Pennsylvania from 1991 to 2005. Is that “almost a decade” even given the debased standards of education in Pennsylvania?

  2. To reiterate our comment policy, pretty much anything pertaining to policy or elected officials is in bounds – including criticism of this site and its writers. Personal attacks, however, are not permitted. In compliance with out policy, several sentences from the previous comment have been removed.

  3. The clown who wrote this article demonstrated his idiocy/bias/ignorance within the very first sentence when he characterized “think-tank THIRD WAY” as being “centrist.” It is in the CENTER of a continuum wherein Democrats are on the Right and Communists are on the Left. It is a “tank” which contains “thinkers” (such as the late Delawarean Mike ‘Bozo’ Castle) who believe that Obama’s “Cap and Tax” will cure GLOBAL WARMING. After an opening like that the “article” devolved rapidly into self-parody and the babbling of Schwartz. I thank Gaia that “Politics/PA” is on the Internet; otherwise, it would have been a sad waste of paper.

  4. Of course. Republicans want to have a minor cut to Medicare, and a restructuring with means testing.

    But Democrats; they’ll leave it alone, until it runs out of money, before 2024, so in about 10 years.

    Then we’ll have to have either cuts at around 15-205 of services, or we’ll have to raise taxes drastically to pay for it.

    That’s what I think of when I think PA, I think a people who can’t plan ahead, who don’t think of the future, and who want what they can get now. You know, like the grasshopper in the “ant and the grasshopper” parable.

    Of course as that is insulting; I wouldn’t say that when running for office in PA. But maybe the people of PA like being insulted as well as being shortsighted?

  5. I find it interesting Ms. Schwartz has conveniently omitted that Obama cut about $500B from the Medicare budget to get his power grabbing healthcare budget passed. Now how or why did she forget this important little fact? I guess she didn’t realize we are broke!

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