September 5, 2014 |
The official cloak of secrecy on political contributions made by companies working for the Delaware River Port Authority may soon be a thing of the past. The DRPA's audit committee on Wednesday approved a proposal to restore public access to vendors' political contributions. The full DRPA board will vote on the proposal, made by Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale, later this month. "It's just common sense," DePasquale said Wednesday. "The public has a right to know who's donating to me. " "The idea of not letting this stuff become public is just silly.
August 28, 2014
FORMER Democratic gubernatorial candidate Katie McGinty was into one of her cheerleader-type speeches on the Capitol steps. The subject was women in politics. "Are we fired up?" she asked. "Are we fired up?" I know I was. It was hot in Harrisburg's midday sun. McGinty yesterday stood in front of two dozen women running for Congress or the Legislature and suggested more women in office means more investment in education, pre-schooling and health care and also more jobs.
August 19, 2014 |
DOUGLASSVILLE, Pa. - Gov. Corbett pushed off into the Schuylkill from a boat ramp in southern Berks County early Sunday morning on Day Two of his annual kayaking tour of Pennsylvania waterways. The events are publicly billed as a way to promote tourism and the outdoors, but they also provide a quiet respite and few hours of haven for the usually media-shy chief executive. This year was no different, except that - given his standing in the polls - it might be the last kayak trip Corbett leads as governor.
August 15, 2014
THE WORDS "employment" and "work" are not always synonyms, at least when it comes to government jobs. For instance, Ron Tomalis was employed as a special adviser to the state Department of Education. How much actual work he did is in dispute. The Corbett administration, which gave Tomalis this cushy position after he stepped down as state education secretary, in 2013, said that he worked tirelessly "to shape programs and policies that are in the best interest of students. " The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette , which used the state's Right to Know Law to gain access to records about Tomalis' activities, found scant evidence of actual work.
August 8, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - There's good news for Hillary Rodham Clinton, bad news for Gov. Christie and President Obama, and strange news for Sen. Cory A. Booker (D., N.J.) in a poll released Wednesday. In a potential 2016 presidential matchup, Clinton leads Christie, 50 percent to 42 percent, on the governor's home turf of New Jersey, according to the Quinnipiac University Poll. The poll tests Christie's appeal at home against the liberal leanings of a state that has backed Democrats in every presidential race since 1992.
August 1, 2014 |
The secrecy surrounding political contributions made by companies working for the Delaware River Port Authority may soon be lifted. The DRPA's audit committee on Wednesday reviewed a proposal to restore public access to vendors' political contributions. The proposal, by Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale, will get another hearing by the audit committee next month. If approved by the panel, it will be sent to the full DRPA board for a vote. Under the DRPA's current rules, adopted in November 2012, contractors doing or seeking business with DRPA must disclose to the agency any political contributions made in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
July 24, 2014
KNOW WHAT'S annoying about the politics of pensions? Everything. Gov. Corbett is in week two of a race around the state - scheduled in Trevose, Bucks County, today; Dresher, Montco, tomorrow - browbeating the Legislature for not passing pension "reform. " Everywhere he goes he cites "a pension crisis" causing property taxes to rise. And he pretends his mostly small-town tour has nothing to do with his re-election effort because, after all, that would be wrong since he put people in prison for using taxpayer resources for political campaigns.
July 16, 2014
New Jersey schoolchildren might have returned to their classrooms this fall shielded by one of the nation's most progressive measures in response to mass shootings - a ban on ammunition magazines holding more than 10 rounds. But now it seems they will have to wait at least two years, and maybe until after the 2016 political conventions, for the state to recalibrate its gun-safety laws. Gov. Christie's recent veto of the sensible gun-control reform - which was the focus of a 55,000-signature campaign by the grieving parents of children slain in Connecticut's Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre - is being widely read as driven by Christie's need to toe the line on red-state issues to enhance his presidential aspirations.
July 14, 2014 |
Their names - on a government witness list released in May - landed with a thud that sent tongues wagging in Philadelphia political circles. Federal prosecutors signaled that they would extend grants of immunity to City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson and four Democratic ward leaders in exchange for their testimony against five former Philadelphia Traffic Court judges currently on trial for an alleged ticket-fixing conspiracy. But as the government concluded its case last week, nearly all of those potential witnesses with ties to city politics escaped a stint on the stand.
July 11, 2014 |
What if you could track every political ad and news segment on TV in the Philadelphia market, see what it said, and, in the case of ads, find out who paid for it? That would tell you much about the information/disinformation flow, the quality of reporting and analysis, the money and the moneybags. It might illuminate, in new detail, the playing field for November, and beyond. Two recent developments have brought that day much nearer. First, as of July 1, under a 2012 FCC decision, all TV stations must now make their political ad information public, digitally.