Chris Potter

Government & Accountability Editor

Nearly three decades after leaving home for college, Chris Potter now lives four miles from the house he grew up in -- a testament either to the charm of the South Hills or to a simple lack of ambition. In the intervening years, Potter held a variety of jobs, including asbestos abatement engineer and ice-cream truck driver. He has also worked for a number of local media outlets, only some of which then went out of business. After serving as the editor of Pittsburgh City Paper for a decade, he covered politics and government at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He has won some awards during the course of his quarter-century journalistic career, but then even a blind squirrel sometimes digs up an acorn.

And yes, that is his real hair.

He can be reached at 412-930-8006 or at cpotter@wesa.fm.

Courtesy of Sylvia Rhor

Rob Rogers' cartoons have been published in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for more than 20 years. And as Pat Bagley can tell you, some friction with editors is part of the job.

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and its recently hired editorial director, Keith Burris, may be on the verge of another controversy over the direction of its editorial page. Over the past week, the paper has not published five cartoons by its editorial cartoonist, Rob Rogers.

Katie Blackley / WESA

Now that the primary is over and the 2018 campaigns are well underway, we checked in with U.S. Senator Bob Casey. On a recent trip through Pittsburgh, Casey sat down with 90.5 WESA's government and accountability editor, Chris Potter.

Casey discussed how issues like trade with China and steel and aluminum tariffs will affect Pennsylvania. 

Members of the Allegheny County Democratic Committee will choose their party leaders on June 9. And whether they vote for current county chair Nancy Patton Mills or challenger Eileen Kelly, this may be the last time they choose by secret ballot.

For a while, in fact, it appeared committee members wouldn’t be allowed to vote in secret this time, either.

City of Pittsburgh District 9

On Thursday, Pittsburgh's Wage Review Committee gathered in an East Liberty church to discuss wages at grocery stores. And while Giant Eagle was once praised for offering good wages and benefits, critics testified that its reputation was past its sell-by date. 

Keith Srakocic / AP

State Sen. Guy Reschenthaler won't know until November whether he will be a Congressman, but already a top Republican has expressed interest in replacing him in Harrisburg.

Official Congressional Portrait

On Friday Congressman Keith Rothfus, a conservative Republican from Sewickley, joined Democrats in voting down a farm bill that would have imposed new limits on food benefits.

Sarah Boden / 90.5 WESA

First-time candidate Sara Innamorato declared victory over a five-term incumbent in the Democratic primary for House District 21.

PA Senate

State Senator Guy Reschenthaler avenged a loss last fall to state Rep. Rick Saccone, handily winning his party's nomination in the newly drawn 14th Congressional District by a margin of over 10 percent.

 

"We have all won tonight," Reschenthaler told supporters at a VFW hall in Peters Township."You were with me from the beginning to the end, and I'm going to be with you well into the future."

Evan Vucci / AP

Today’s primary ballot allows voters to pick their champions in races for governor and U.S. Senator on down. But University of Pittsburgh political science professor Kristin Kanthak argues what’s at stake this year isn’t just the identities of the candidates–but of the parties themselves.

Niven Sabherwal / 90.5 WESA

The Allegheny River borough of Millvale is arguably at the epicenter of Tuesday’s primary elections. But as of lunchtime, it was kind of hard to tell.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Republican and Democratic voters are heading to the polls today to select their champions for November's general election, and Mark Wolosik, who heads Allegheny County's elections department, is expecting light turnout for today's primary. 

"We're predicting about 20 percent on both sides -- 20 percent Democratic and 20 percent Republican registered voters," he says.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Call it a tale of two Costas.

In campaign-season mailers being sent to Democratic voters in the 21st state House district, state Rep. Dom Costa boasts of his success at “Moving Pittsburgh Forward.” 

Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh City Council is rewriting a proposal to reform the troubled Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority.

An Allegheny County Democrat is once again seeking to become the face of the state Democratic Party: Nancy Patton Mills, who chairs the county’s committee, is officially declaring her candidacy for party chair when state officials gather in Harrisburg in mid-June.

“I think it’s time for the PA Democratic Committee to come into this century,” Mills says. “[We] are the party of the people now,” with a more diverse make-up.

Courtesy Guy Reschenthaler official Facebook page; Keith Srakocic/AP

State Representative Rick Saccone is trading harsh words with former Congressman Tim Murphy, who Saccone sought to replace earlier this year. And the dispute stems from Murphy's support of a rival, state Senator Guy Reschenthaler, in a Congressional primary next week.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA


More than one in five Pittsburgh police officers reside beyond the Pittsburgh city limits, just a year after gaining the right to live outside the city.

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

The close-knit homes of Pittsburgh’s Morningside neighborhood could almost be the backdrop for the opening credits to 1970s sitcom "All In the Family." But when Sara Innamorato is out knocking doors, the first-time Democratic candidate can see at least one way she’s changing the landscape.

“It’s just a bizarre, bizarre thing to see your name on a sign,” she said.

Keith Srakocic / AP

People trickled into the Spirit of Pittsburgh ballroom at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center Wednesday night for the opening of the city’s annual meeting on P4, a decision-making framework that prioritizes people, place, planet and performance to ensure development is equitable and sustainable.

Pennsylvania Supreme Court

Val DiGiorgio, the chair of the state Republican Party, said Republicans–including those running in the newly drawn 14th Congressional District–should refrain from attacking each other. But his party hasn't given up the fight against a new Congressional district map, even as voters prepare to cast ballots in those races next month.

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

Pundits say the 75 Democrats who gathered in this Washington, Pa. library basement last weekend have a tough road ahead in the newly drawn 14th District. 

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

Republican Rick Saccone drew upon national Republican support during his special election campaign against Democrat Conor Lamb last month. He lost that race anyway, and federal campaign-finance reports show he may not be able to count on that edge when facing a new Republican challenger, state Sen. Guy Reschenthaler, in the May 15 primary.

An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA

Amazon, one of the world’s most successful businesses, started out as an online bookseller. But an effort to lure its second corporate headquarters--and 50,000 jobs--to Pittsburgh has not exactly been an open book.

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr


In January, Gov. Tom Wolf addressed the blight of opioid addiction by issuing a statewide disaster declaration. But those declarations, which are more commonly used for natural catastrophes, expire after 90 days. On Tuesday, Wolf said he intends to renew it.

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