Josh Shapiro sent out a 1,500 word open letter to Pennsylvanians explaining why he wants to run and what he hopes to accomplish.
“As Attorney General, I’ll lead the effort to restore integrity to our government,” Shapiro said. “I’ll do this by advocating for and adopting tough ethical standards and by looking out for those who often get hurt in the system that is rigged against them.”
Shapiro’s pledge to “restore integrity” is a not so veiled reference to incumbent Attorney General Kathleen Kane and all her troubles. Kane is now asserting that she’ll run for re-election and either way the eventual Democratic nominee will have to distance himself from her.
The message even subtly echoes George W. Bush’s pledge in 2000 to “restore and dignity to the White House” after the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Viewed in that context, Shapiro may be trying to preempt any effort by the GOP nominee to paint the contest as a referendum on Kane.
The candidate also sought to portray the recent scandals as part of a long line that stretches across decades and party lines.
“Pennsylvania’s next Attorney General will face many specific challenges but the most pressing challenge we face today in our justice system is a crisis of confidence, doubts about the administration of justice and the results that follow,” Shapiro explained. “From ‘Bonusgate’ to ‘Kids For Cash’ and now to ‘Porngate’ we can’t help but feel frustrated with our democracy and its leaders.”
Before becoming Montgomery County Commissioner, Shapiro served as a State Representative for the 153rd district from 2005 to 2012. He is married to his high school sweetheart, Lori, and they have four children together.