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NEWS
May 6, 2014
State Sen. LeAnna Washington has told voters in the state's Fourth District all they need to know to bounce her from office in the May 20 Democratic primary. The question is, were they listening? And if so, do they care? Washington has been charged with misuse of office for requiring taxpayer-funded staff to raise money for her campaigns. According to a grand jury report, when a staffer questioned the activity, she replied, "I'm the f-ing senator. I do what the f- I want. " Voters have no reason to reward such arrogance.
NEWS
April 11, 2014 | By Amy Worden, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - The state Senate unanimously approved a bill Wednesday that would ban lawmakers from accepting cash gifts from lobbyists or others seeking to "influence the legislative process. " "Senate approval of this legislation gives hope that an ugly problem is about to yield a responsible solution," said Sen. Lisa Baker (R., Luzerne), sponsor of the bill. "It sets basic ground rules everyone can grasp. " The 49-0 vote followed an unusually quick path for a piece of legislation, and came just weeks after The Inquirer first reported that four Philadelphia lawmakers had been caught on tape taking money from a lobbyist.
NEWS
April 10, 2014 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
On the eve of a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that will bring Comcast Corp. face-to-face with one of its sharpest critics, Minnesota Sen. Al Franken, the cable-TV company released on Tuesday a 650-page public interest filing on the potential benefits of the $45.2 billion deal for Time Warner Cable Inc. Comcast steadfastly maintained that creating a huge company that provides cable television and Internet and phone service will not eliminate any...
NEWS
April 9, 2014 | By Amy Worden, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG A Senate committee on Monday unanimously approved a bill to ban cash gifts to lawmakers, the latest reform measure to emerge since the disclosure that four Philadelphia legislators were caught on tape taking money from a lobbyist. "This is a very important first step, a fundamental principal that I think should be in law," said the bill's sponsor, Sen. Lisa Baker (R., Luzerne). The bill, which could be voted on by the full Senate as early as Wednesday, would institute an "absolute ban on legislators accepting cash gifts from lobbyists, principals, consultants, and others who seek to influence the legislative process.
BUSINESS
April 7, 2014 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold the first public hearing on Comcast Corp.'s proposed $45.2 billion deal for Time Warner Cable Inc. on Wednesday, amid regulatory and financial concerns about merging the No. 1 and No. 2 cable-TV companies. The hearing likely will be a forum for a word most people - cable customers or not - will find unfamiliar: monopsony . It is a market condition in which there is only one big buyer for services or goods. In the context of a combined Comcast and Time Warner Cable, it describes how the giant cable-TV company would be the major purchaser of Hollywood entertainment because of its tens of millions of cable-TV subscribers, and thus could dictate economic terms to the programmers.
NEWS
March 16, 2014 | By Chris Palmer and Jessica Parks, Inquirer Staff Writers
To Lucress Irizarry, the July 2012 birthday party for State Sen. LeAnna Washington was like any other laid-back summer gathering. About 100 casually dressed guests milled beneath a tent on the lawn of Fairmount Park's Belmont Mansion, some holding plates of quiche and chicken from the buffet. As the afternoon sun fell, guests sat at round tables or danced to music from a DJ. "It was really nice," said Irizarry, who co-owns a photography company that Washington hired to shoot the event.
NEWS
March 8, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - State Sen. Mike Stack of Philadelphia on Thursday became the first in a crowded field vying for the Democratic nomination in the governor's or the lieutenant governor's race to file nominating petitions. Stack, who is among seven announced candidates running to be the state's second-in-command, collected 4,028 signatures - more than the 1,000 required - to earn a spot on the May primary ballot. The Philadelphia senator, who started the year with roughly $400,000 in his campaign coffers, said he planned to deliver an additional 4,000 signatures by Tuesday's deadline to file nominating petitions.
NEWS
March 7, 2014 | BY JENNY DeHUFF, Daily News Staff Writer dehuffj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5218
DISTRICT Attorney Seth Williams, typically an ardent supporter of President Obama, joined with congressional Republicans yesterday in opposing the nomination of Debo Adegbile to a top Justice Department post. Williams said in a news conference that Adegbile's role in defending convicted cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal is the crux of why he, too, objects to the nomination. Adegbile was Obama's top pick to head the Justice Department's civil-rights division. He was head of the NAACP's Legal Defense Fund at the time it was fighting against the death penalty for Abu-Jamal.
NEWS
March 7, 2014 | By Jonathan Tamari and Jeremy Roebuck, Inquirer Staff Writers
WASHINGTON - Mumia Abu-Jamal, a name that for more than three decades has stirred emotional divisions in Philadelphia and across oceans, was at the center of a stunning defeat for President Obama on Wednesday as the Senate blocked a presidential nominee who had worked on the convicted cop killer's death penalty appeal. By a 52-47 vote, Republicans and eight Democrats blocked a key procedural step in the nomination of Debo Adegbile, a former NAACP lawyer whom Obama had tapped to head the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division.
NEWS
February 19, 2014 | By Laura McCrystal, Inquirer Staff Writer
Delaware County Council Chairman Tom McGarrigle began his candidacy for state Senate on Monday with a promise to focus on bringing more jobs to the region. "I'm running because I want to work for job creation like I did in Delaware County," McGarrigle said after announcing his campaign at the auto center he owns in Springfield Township. McGarrigle, a Republican who also lives in Springfield, is running for the 26th District seat left open by Republican Sen. Edwin "Ted" Erickson.
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