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How White House Visits Became The Political Football Of Summer 2018

Kiichiro Sato
The Pittsburgh Steelers side of the field is nearly empty during the playing of the national anthem before an NFL football game between the Steelers and the Chicago Bears, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017.

President Donald Trump rescinded his invitation to the Philadelphia Eagles this week after reports suggested only about 10 players of the 90-member, Super Bowl-winning squad were planning to attend. The President tied the decision to past criticism of players who protested police brutality and harsh treatment of African Americans by kneeling during the "National Anthem."

Trump's move comes on the heels of a contentious vote by NFL ownership requiring players to stand during the anthem if they're on the field. Steelers owner Art Rooney II celebrated the move, but some players weren't as supportive.

Do White House invitations really matter? How are Philadelphia fans taking the news? Steve Esack of The Morning Call and Sean Gentille of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette explain.

Next in the program...

Thousands are expected in Downtown Pittsburgh this weekend to celebrate the LGBT community. The weekend culminates with a pair of disparate equality marches. One is an official part of PrideFest, organized by the Delta Foundation. The other is a product of SisTers PGH, a nonprofit transgender and non-binary centered shelter transitioning program for at-risk transgender or non-binary Pittsburghers. 

Pittsburgh City Paper's Ryan Deto talks about the rift that spawned new events.

Coming up...

Matt McKinney of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reviewed more than 2,000 attendance records for Allegheny County school boards between January 2016 and May. He highlights who showed up for work and who has been missing meeting for years.

Later on...

Local natural gas output exploded in the last decade, catapulting the commonwealth second only to Texas in gas production. But as Mike Wereschagin reports for LNP Media and The Caucus, the Keystone State's net export potential is attracting foreign influence not unlike what Eastern European nations have been dealing with for years.
And finally...

WESA's Harrisburg bureau chief Katie Meyer explains the latest in an already contentious 2018 gubernatorial contest between Republican Scott Wagner and incumbent Democrat Tom Wolf.

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s weekly news program. Each week, reporters, editors and storytellers join veteran journalist and host Kevin Gavin to take an in-depth look at stories important to the Pittsburgh region. Find more episodes of The Confluence here.

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