The 2022 Republican Senate race turns personal, a former GOP state Senate and House candidate pleads guilty for his role in the January 6 Capitol riot, plus a news organization is a finalist for online investigative journalism award. All of that and more are in this week’s Ups and Downs.
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GOP Senate Primary. The 2022 Republican Senate race has turned personal between two of the leading candidates seeking the party nomination to succeed retiring Sen. Pat Toomey. Just days after former President Donald Trump formally announced his support for Sean Parnell’s candidacy, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Jeff Bartos “launched a charged personal attack” against Parnell. The Inquirer reports that Bartos is claiming that “Parnell is “unelectable” because of protective orders Parnell’s wife sought against him as their marriage splintered.” Parnell responded by accusing Bartos of “spreading lies, said the political attack hurt his three children, and that Bartos should drop out of the race.” It’s unclear how this feud between Bartos and Parnell will end, but the Associated Press noted that the attack was “the sharpest yet of the primary.”
Frank Scavo. The former Old Forge School Director and previous GOP candidate for the state Senate and House pleaded guilty for “his role in the January 6 Capitol riot and faces up to six months in a federal prison, though his lawyer… plans to argue against jailing” him, according to the Scranton Times-Tribune.
Mike Kelly. According to Roll Call, the Butler County Republican is one of four sitting members of Congress being investigated by the House Ethics Committee. Roll Call cited the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s original report in September 2020 that Kelly “was pushing the Trump administration to launch an investigation into a foreign steel imports. Days before the Department of Commerce announced the investigation, Kelly’s wife bought stock in Cleveland-Cliffs, a Pennsylvania steel company that was threatened by the very imports the Commerce Department was investigating.”
Charles Roca. A historic confirmation. The Allentown Morning Call reports that Allentown City Council unanimously confirmed Roca as Allentown’s permanent police chief and becomes the first Latino to lead the department in the process. The Morning Call adds that Roca has been described as “the face of modern Allentown” by one mayoral candidate, while other council members have “lauded” him for “his deep roots and commitment to the city and police department.”
Anthony Hamlet. Pittsburgh will soon have a new Public Schools Superintendent. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that Hamlet, “who has faced increasing criticism in recent weeks following a state report that accused him of several ethical violations,” announced that he will be resigning from his position in October.
Spotlight PA. Well deserved recognition for this Pennsylvania news organization. The Online News Association recognized two investigations by Spotlight PA, “At Risk, In the Dark,” and “The Hidden Tab,” as finalists for a national award honoring innovation and excellence in online investigative journalism,” according to Spotlight PA.
Hanif Johnson. This Magisterial District Judge has “added another accomplishment,” according to PennLive. Johnson, who is the youngest magisterial district judge in Pennsylvania, is now a corporal in the U.S. Army Reserve after being sworn-in on Thursday. PennLive reports that Johnson’s “specialty in the service will be carpentry and masonry.”
TWEET OF THE WEEK
“This story about autonomous technology should write itself,” is a thing I said today and was pleased with myself about.
— Chris Potter (@CPotterPgh) September 10, 2021