2020 Election

Jake Savitz / 90.5 WESA

 

On today's program: The nearly century-old former home of the YMCA in the Hill District is getting a new purpose; a look at what it’ll take to get Pittsburgh ready for 5G; state Attorney General Josh Shapiro goes after medicaid fraudsters and JUUL; and some local progressives aren’t happy with the county Democratic committee’s endorsements. 

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

A challenger in what will likely be among the most closely-watched Democratic primaries in western Pennsylvania has amassed a considerable war chest in his bid to topple state Rep. Summer Lee. And building-trades unions are already playing a notable role in the Monongahela Valley-based terrain of state House District 34.   

Courtesy of Nick Pisciottano for State Representative

The phrases “Monongahela Valley” and “new political blood” are not often found in the same sentence. But if Nick Pisciottano has his way, Democrats will see a generational shift in leadership after the surprise retirement announcement of state Rep. Bill Kortz earlier this month.

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

Speaker of the state House Mike Turzai, a key figure in western Pennsylvania Republican politics for the past two decades, announced Thursday that he will not run for re-election this year and hopes to find work in the private sector. 

Jared Murphy / 90.5 WESA

The path to presidential victory runs directly through Pennsylvania. The state holds 20 electoral votes and Donald Trump’s 2016 win was decided by less than 50,000 votes, or less than one percentage point. 

Amy Sisk / 90.5 WESA

Pennsylvania's legislature has been controlled by Republicans for nearly a decade, but progressive organizers hope to shift the balance of power in this year’s election.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

Pennsylvania Congressman Conor Lamb joined two other Democratic officials with military backgrounds in endorsing Joe Biden Sunday afternoon, formalizing a commitment that has long been obvious.

Courtesey of Bill Brittain

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: a member of the politically notable Costa family has drawn a progressive challenger in a Democratic primary. But state Sen. Jay Costa is hoping the family resemblance ends there.

Jared Murphy and Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

The path to presidential victory runs directly through Pennsylvania. The state holds 20 electoral votes and Donald Trump’s 2016 win was decided by less than 50,000 votes, or less than one percentage point. Polls show it will be a close race again in 2020. Over the next year, WESA is following four voters at the center of this election about the big issues that will sway their decisions at the ballot box.

Jared Murphy / 90.5 WESA

The seven Democratic presidential candidates who spoke to union members and activists in Downtown Pittsburgh Saturday espoused similar goals: paying teachers more, ensuring more equitable resources for poorer schools, and unraveling an earlier generation of changes that include charter schools and standardized testing. 

Ariel Worthy / 90.5 WESA

On the morning that Democrats presented articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence hailed Trump's record on military and veterans' issues — while promising the fight would continue. 

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

Franklin Park is both rustic and upscale, graced with million-dollar homes, state game lands and even the occasional large flightless bird. And as Matt Ferriolo drives through the community touting its virtues — “People really, really care about keeping the forested nature of this place,” he says at one point — an ostrich trots down the driveway of a nearby farm.

Lamb Campaign

Pittsburgh City Controller Michael Lamb formally announced his long-anticipated bid to run for state auditor general Tuesday.

“Whether it’s through innovation or reform, or fighting corruption or protecting from waste: all those things we do, my entire career has led to a job like this,” Lamb said.

Friends of Devlin

Bridgeville businessman and veteran Devlin Robinson hopes to challenge state Senator Pam Iovino in the 37th state Senate District next year, a match-up that would represent a kind of alternate-universe version of the election fight many Republicans hoped to have this past spring.

Courtesy of Heidelbaugh for Attorney General

Pittsburgh-area attorney Heather Heidelbaugh announced Tuesday that she will run for Pennsylvania Attorney General next year. 

Pelosi Comes to Pennsylvania As Dems Try To Fix 2016 Errors

Nov 1, 2019
Kimberly Paynter / WHYY

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will speak at a first annual Pennsylvania Democratic Party dinner fundraiser, three years after Donald Trump's victory in the state stunned Democrats into trying to fix what went wrong in 2016's presidential election.

Friday's dinner is part of what state Democrats are doing to prepare for 2020 and beyond in the presidential battleground.

The party is employing perhaps its largest field staff ever in an off-year election to build relationships with local candidates and activists, including progressive groups that sprung up after Trump's victory.

Damian Dovarganes / AP

 

On today's program: What to expect one year from the 2020 elections; how tariffs are affecting some of PA’s steel workers; what PA can do to get ahead of a potential retirement crisis in manufacturing; and how Pittsburgh safety officials are preparing for the threat of bioterrorism.

Chris Potter / 90.5 WESA

Mark Sanford isn’t the first presidential candidate to visit Oakland in the run-up to 2020. Democratic hopefuls Bernie Sanders, Amy Klobuchar and Beto O’Rourke have made visits of their own. But none of them took the concept of retail politicking quite as far as Sanford, a South Carolina Republican who previously served as the state’s governor and representative in Congress.

Provided by Arielle Evans / Courtesy of HundrED

On today's program: Pittsburgh education takes an international honor; apple growers face an unknown threat that's killing trees; school districts are debating allowing teachers to carry guns in classrooms; and a chance to check-in on your 2020 Democratic hopeful bingo card.

Beto for America Campaign

When Beto O’Rourke visits Pittsburgh on Wednesday, his campaign says he’ll address pressing issues like gun violence and impeaching President Donald Trump. But he’ll do some listening too, both at a gathering with the SEIU, and during a campaign event being billed as a Town Hall in Oakland’s Schenley Plaza.

Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Presidential candidate and Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar will make her first campaign stop in Pittsburgh Wednesday. She will appear at Stack’d Burgers in Oakland at 6:30 p.m., according to the campaign’s calendar.  

For years, Democratic voters in Allegheny County have complained of a lack of choice: Incumbent state legislators with familiar names run all but unopposed, returning to Harrisburg year after year. But times may be changing.  In the 20th state House district alone, two 32-year-old female candidates are pledging to be a more visible presence than incumbent Adam Ravenstahl.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

On today's program: Propel charter schools are prioritizing early learning benchmarks; fires in the Amazon rainforest are diminishing migratory bird habitats; a lot of Pittsburghers think they live in the Midwest; and local universities want to register more student voters ahead of the 2020 elections. 

Bernie Sanders received an enthusiastic welcome – and his first endorsement by a national labor group – from the United Electrical workers union in Pittsburgh Monday.

Evan Vucci / AP

A major Democratic political action committee, Priorities USA, has already begun spending in Pennsylvania and other key states ahead of the 2020 presidential election.

Allegheny County Council

Allegheny County councilor Sam DeMarco, the top Republican elected official in Allegheny County, is the county party's new chair after a Saturday morning vote in a Greentree hotel. He beat his rival, committee treasurer Bronco Brnardic, 213 to 157.

AP

Democratic presidential hopeful U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand kicked off a string of campaign events in Pittsburgh Thursday, where she held a roundtable discussion on rising prescription drug prices with area health care employees. 

Keith Srakocic / AP

Pennsylvania Republicans are poised to select a new leader in Hershey this Saturday, and early indications are that the fight to replace Val DiGiorgio could be bruising.

Former Congressman Joe Sestak Announces 2020 Presidential Bid

Jun 23, 2019

Former Pennsylvania Congressman Joe Sestak entered the crowded 2020 presidential race on Sunday, making him the 24th Democrat to announce their bid.

 

Courtesy of the Republican Party of Pennsylvania

After the 2018 midterm election, the Pennsylvania Congressional delegation made a big shift from 13 Republicans and five Democrats to an even split of 9-9, but Pennsylvania Republican Party chair Val DiGiorgio says he’s not worried about the 2020 presidential race.

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