February 23, 2016 |
Gov. Wolf, who has called for state Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane to resign, made clear on Sunday whom he would like to see next hold that post. Wolf endorsed Montgomery County Commission Chairman Josh Shapiro for the April 26 Democratic primary election, saying he is "a proven reformer who will restore integrity to Harrisburg, and he is the best choice to be our next attorney general. " Kane is awaiting trial in Montgomery County on perjury and other charges, accused of leaking secret grand-jury materials to the Philadelphia Daily News.
April 25, 2015 |
Philadelphia City Commissioner Stephanie Singer's name will not appear on the May 19 primary election ballot, Commonwealth Court ruled Thursday. The court rejected Singer's appeal of a Common Pleas Court ruling March 30 striking her name from the ballot. Singer needed at least 1,000 signatures from registered Democrats on nomination petitions to be listed on the ballot. She filed 1,485 but a review during a legal challenge found that just 996 were valid. That left her four names short in her bid for a second four-year term.
June 5, 2014 |
It may not surprise many people in Philadelphia-area politics that Zack Stalberg is leaving the helm of the Committee of Seventy to live out a Western fantasy. The 67-year-old former newspaper editor who took over the nonprofit watchdog group in 2005 has been a kind of ethics sheriff ever since. Stalberg announced Tuesday that he would step down as chief executive of the Committee of Seventy later this month. It is his second retirement and likely not his last. He and his wife are moving to New Mexico, where Stalberg hopes to ride horses and land a non-government-related job. "I want to do something that's different, that gets me outdoors," the former editor of the Philadelphia Daily News said Thursday.
May 23, 2014 |
FOR THE third time in three weeks, Gov. Corbett has surrendered on a controversial public policy that new Democratic nominee Tom Wolf could have used as a potent point of political attack. Coincidence? Or an example of an incumbent candidate moving to the middle of the political spectrum just as the general-election campaign begins in earnest? Corbett on Wednesday said he will not appeal a ruling by U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III that struck down the state's 1996 ban on same-sex marriage.
May 14, 2014
After two years and $7 million in wasted taxpayer-funded advertising costs and legal fees, Pennsylvania's embarrassing and discriminatory voter-ID law has finally been buried by a wise court ruling. But like a gambler caught up in a losing streak, Gov. Corbett can't bring himself to just walk away. Instead, he sends mixed signals. He said Thursday that he won't appeal the Commonwealth Court ruling in January, which is good. But, apparently to appease his radical-right buddies, he also said he wants to retool the law. Fortunately, Harrisburg Republicans have an election to worry about and are in no mood to revive this modern cousin of the poll taxes once used to discourage certain people from voting.
May 10, 2014 |
HARRISBURG - Gov. Corbett dropped his battle Thursday to keep intact the two-year-old law requiring Pennsylvanians to show a state-approved photo ID before voting. In a statement, Corbett said he would not ask the state Supreme Court to review a lower court ruling that declared the law unconstitutional. But the governor defended its intent and said his administration would work with the legislature to make the necessary changes for the law to pass judicial muster. "A photo identification requirement is a sensible and reasonable measure for the commonwealth to reassure the public that everyone who votes is registered and eligible to cast a ballot," he said.
May 6, 2014
THE WORDING was polite but the message was clear. U.S. Sen. Bob Casey wrote Gov. Corbett last week urging him to give up trying to implement the state's Voter ID Law. This dog of a law, first passed in 2012, has never fully taken effect, mostly due to court challenges to its strict requirements that voters show a photo ID before being allowed to vote. In January, Commonwealth Judge Bernard McGinley ruled the law unconstitutional, saying that it could deny the right to vote to several hundred thousand Pennsylvania who did not have access to the approved IDs. The state asked McGinley to reconsider his decision.
January 29, 2014 |
Lawyers for Gov. Corbett on Monday asked the Commonwealth Court judge who struck down the state's voter ID law this month to reconsider his ruling. The 39-page filing allows the Corbett administration to keep alive its appeal hopes, but Joshua Maus, a spokesman for the Governor's Office of General Counsel, said, "It would be premature to say whether we would move forward with an appeal. " The posttrial motion argues that Judge Bernard L. McGinley made numerous errors in reaching his decision that the law, one of the strictest in the nation, was unconstitutional.
January 23, 2014
IF THE LEGISLATURE and the courts spent as much time and effort on Pennsylvania's real problems as they have over the issue of voter ID, this state would be far, far better off. The law had a foul smell to it even when it passed in 2012. The law, billed as an anti-fraud measure, required all voters to show a photo ID before being allowed to vote. It has yet to go into effect because opponents sued in the courts and the judges in charge of the case delayed it. As testimony about the bill piled up, the odor just got worse.
January 20, 2014
In tossing out Pennsylvania's oppressive voter-ID law, Commonwealth Court Judge Bernard McGinley stated the obvious: "Voting laws are designed to assure a free and fair election; the Voter ID Law does not further this goal. " Before the law was passed in March 2012, voters were already required to provide proof of residency, and poll workers were allowed to request ID if they doubted anyone's qualifications. But that didn't stop Republican legislators and Gov. Corbett from enacting one of the nation's most restrictive voter-ID laws.