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Updated: Corbett Admin Shakeup: COS Aichele is Out

Steve Aichele
Steve Aichele

For the second time in fourteen months, Gov. Corbett will get a new Chief of Staff.

Steve Aichele, who served in the role since May 2012, will step down this summer. He may be replaced by Leslie Gromis-Baker, a longtime GOP strategist who was Tom Ridge’s 1998 campaign manager.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported the news, as did the Associated Press. Each cited anonymous sources close to the Governor’s office.

Update: Corbett’s office confirmed the staff shakeup Wednesday:

“In her years of public service, both state and federal, as well as her time in the private sector, Leslie Gromis Baker has mastered the details of effective political management and leadership, skills she will bring to the demanding position of chief of staff,’’ Corbett said.

“Steve has provided a spark and energy to the administration, and staff members will long remember his enthusiasm and optimism,” Corbett said. “I’m grateful that Steve, who initially came on board as general counsel and, upon Bill Ward’s departure for a judicial post, took on the new responsibilities of chief of staff and dove in with enthusiasm and ambition into his duties.”

As an interesting quirk, both Aichele and Gromis-Baker have politically connected spouses. Carol Aichele is Pa.’s Secretary of the Commonwealth. Scott Baker is the VP of Government Affairs at UPMC.

Another forthcoming departure: Corbett legislative liaison Christopher Carusone.

Update: Corbett also confirmed Carusone’s departure.

“I am especially grateful to Chris for giving us an extra year of service. He intended to leave for the private sector last year, but delayed his departure at my request in order to take on the role as legislative secretary,” Corbett said.

The staff changes come as Corbett looks uphill at his 2014 re-election chances. The Governor fell short on three major legislative priorities in June, and his poll numbers have consistently been very low.

10 Responses

  1. Even if you are 100% Republican Party (rah-rah) you have to admit, if you are honest, this is an administration that has achieved very little. It had the House and the Senate under the elephant banner and yet we still have ALL the big problems and still no meaningful solutions. MOAR DEBT. Pensions, Unions, crony capitalism, in-efficient alphabet soup agencies still rule Harrisburg and burden the PA tax payer with MOAR and MOAR taxes. A bad business environment. There is never enough revenue for the statist Political class.

    The best thing Corbett could do for the “party” is announce his decision to not attempt another term due to health, family whatever. He would never admit effectiveness but lets admit it, that is the real reason for him to “retire”.

  2. A fundraiser and lobbyist as chief of staff is not a good news fornThe Forgotten Taxpayer.

    One might think the quasi-socialist crony capitalists and politically connected law firms are pleased.

  3. I loved PAGOP Chairman Rob Gleason’s appearance on Rachel Maddow praising the benefits of Voter Suppression! Rob Gleason For Governor! Gleason has the balls to speak the truth!

  4. Dear Frank: I would love to replace Carol as Secretary of Voter Suppression! I’M easy: you don’t need to hire my spouse or other family members! I’m a TAKER who believes in public service!!

  5. Advice to Ms. Gromis: buy some insurance from PAGOP Chair and GOP gubernatorial candidate in waiting Rob Gleason! The average service life expectancy for a Corbett COS is not long! I’m sure the coverage will be expensive!

  6. I assume Hubby Scott has some body bags ready if need be (an in-kind donation). The stench of this decomposing political body grows by the hours.

  7. Leslie is a pro, but the pick raises a few questions for me. 1st, does she have much experience with the mechanics of state government?
    2nd, Her political acumen and fundraising abilities are the biggest assets she has brought to the Corbett organization. If she is in state government, she will not be able to be directly involved in the campaign and definitely can not be involved in fundraising.
    It seems to me that this was a power play by some on the political side to put her on the shelf in the election year, or not well thought out and an invitation for corruption.

  8. Please Please help me get my interview with John Brabender. I so badly want to be a Knight of the Corbett Round Table. As I said I am well qualified: I’m a Taker carefully disguised as a Marker. I can just as easily make fees from Tom Corbett’s decomposing political body as anyone. else. Isn’t that what PUBLIC Service is all about (wink-wink). I’m really interested in being Secretary of Voter Suppression or being on the Turnpike Commission. Please get back to me soon, Mr. Brabender or I’m going to join the Rob Gleason for Governor campaign. Don’t be surprised by this Harrisburg coup d’etat. You’ve been forewarned.

  9. Like Tom or not, he made a great selection. Leslie Gromis-Baker is top notch.

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