Politics

Pennsylvania House of Representatives / legis.state.pa.gov

Abuse allegations against Delaware County Representative Nick Miccarelli have put state Capitol law enforcement in a somewhat unprecedented situation.

Two weeks ago, the Philadelphia Inquirer and L&P’s The Caucus reported that two women who dated Miccarelli accused him repeated abuse.

Late last week, one of those women went public.

Keith Srakocic / AP

Drawing national attention and serving as what many consider an early indicator for the 2018 midterm election cycle, today all eyes are on Democrat Conor Lamb and Republican Rick Saccone, the candidates vying for a seat in the 18th Congressional District. 

#PA18 Live Blog: District 18 Special Election

Mar 13, 2018
Sarah Kovash/Keith Srakocic / 90.5 WESA/AP

Follow 90.5 WESA's live blog throughout the day for continuing coverage of the District 18 special election. 

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

Pennsylvania's governor wants to ban gifts to all elected state officials and to suspend pay for himself, lawmakers and their top aides when they have not fully enacted a budget by the annual deadline.

Gov. Tom Wolf, a first-term Democrat seeking re-election, will outline a government reform proposal on Monday that also includes better campaign finance disclosure and a requirement that lawmakers provide receipts when seeking reimbursement for expenses.

Pennsylvania Supreme Court

A fraught redistricting battle in Pennsylvania has taken a small step forward.

A panel of three federal judges heard arguments Friday in a case over whether the commonwealth’s Supreme Court violated the federal constitution when it redrew congressional maps last month.

Both the plaintiffs and defendants acknowledged, the case doesn’t have any direct precedent.

Lawyers for two Republican state Senate leaders and eight GOP congressmen contended that the state court usurped the legislature’s power.

Keith Srakocic / AP

Voters head to the polls Tuesday in the special election to fill the empty seat in Pennsylvania’s 18th Congressional District south of Pittsburgh.

Trump: Don't Fall For Democrat Lamb's Moderate Talk

Mar 10, 2018
Keith Srakocic / AP

President Donald Trump told western Pennsylvania voters Saturday night that his new tariffs were saving the steel industry and urged them to send a Republican to the House so he can keep delivering those kinds of results.

The president lent his weight to Republican Rick Saccone in the final days of a surprisingly competitive special election outside Pittsburgh that could reverberate nationally ahead of the November midterm elections.

Pennsylvania Democrats See Surge Of Legislative Candidates

Mar 9, 2018
Matt Rourke / AP

Democrats hoping to claw their way out of a deep minority in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives got some good news this week when their candidates filed petitions to get on the ballot in 180 of the chamber's 203 districts.

The flood-the-zone strategy, inspired in part by a surprising showing for their party in Virginia in November, is designed to put more of the chamber in play and ramp up pressure on Republicans to defend their 121-82 majority.

An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA


Just days away from the March 13 special congressional election between Republican Rick Saccone (Elizabeth) and Democrat Conor Lamb (Mt. Lebanon), volunteers are knocking doors, calling voters and distributing campaign literature in an effort to get out the vote in the 18th District south of Pittsburgh.

Matt Rourke / AP

Republican state lawmakers wrapped up three weeks of annual budget hearings by tearing into Governor Tom Wolf’s administration for several hours straight.

 

The crime, as they see it?

 

Making what the GOP alleges is an unconstitutional deal to close this fiscal year’s budget deficit.

 

White House Gears Up Campaigning For District 18 Special Election

Mar 8, 2018
Keith Srakocic / AP

Fighting to stave off another special election embarrassment, the White House is strengthening its final-days offensive in western Pennsylvania.

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

As more states begin creating work requirements for able-bodied Medicaid recipients, calls to do the same in Pennsylvania are building.

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

Pennsylvania lawmakers are trying to figure out a better way to pay for state police.

Alex Brandon / AP

State elections officials say Democrat Bob Casey and three Republicans filed petitions before Pennsylvania's deadline to get on the primary ballot for U.S. Senate.

The Republicans who filed by Tuesday night's deadline were U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta of Hazleton, state Rep. Jim Christiana of Beaver County and perennial candidate Joe Vodvarka of suburban Pittsburgh.

Tom Wolf / Flickr

Three weeks after the school shooting in Parkland, Fla. that left 17 dead, there seems to be some momentum for action on gun reform bills in Congress and in the legislatures of states, including Florida and Pennsylvania.

Emma Lee / WHYY

Pennsylvanians won't be lacking for choice when they select general election candidates for lieutenant governor.

Pennsylvania's state elections officials reported receiving paperwork from seven Democrats and five Republicans by Tuesday night's deadline.

Pennsylvania Supreme Court

The battle over how to handle Pennsylvania’s congressional maps has even political families divided.

 

Former governor Dick Thornburgh has filed a brief to the United States Supreme Court arguing a new congressional map drawn by the state Supreme Court should be invalidated.

 

But the governor’s son, David, has called that map an “improvement” on the old one.

 

Wolf Says New Map Should Be Used For Congressional Elections

Mar 6, 2018
Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania's governor told the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday it would cost millions of dollars and confuse voters if the justices stop current plans to hold congressional elections this year based on a new district map imposed last month by the state Supreme Court.

Heather Ainsworth / AP

In their final week of annual budget hearings, state lawmakers are trying to evaluate how last year’s sweeping gambling overhaul—designed to balance a shaky revenue plan—is affecting state finances.

 

The introduction of a new class of mini-casinos and remote video gaming terminals is the biggest expansion Pennsylvania’s gambling industry has seen since it was legalized well over a decade ago.

 

House Races Are In Full Swing, But Layered With Uncertainty

Mar 5, 2018
Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania's congressional races are in full swing, while Republicans are waging legal battles in federal courts in an effort to block a new map of 18 districts imposed by the state Supreme Court.

That has added a layer of uncertainly to fields of candidates that already went through upheaval when the state's high court redrew boundaries last month, putting the homes of some congressional hopefuls into different districts or forcing them to rethink their candidacy.

Keith Srakocic / AP

Democrat Conor Lamb (Mt. Lebanon Township) and Republican Rick Saccone (Elizabeth Township) doubled down on their respective messages, and launched sharp criticism at one another, ahead of the March 13 special election to fill the empty House seat in Pennsylvania’s 18th District.

Lamb Pounds Saccone In Fundraising In US House Race

Mar 2, 2018
An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA

Democrat Conor Lamb is pounding his Republican opponent Rick Saccone in fundraising ahead of the March 13 special election for a vacant U.S. House seat in a conservative southwestern Pennsylvania district, a contest viewed as a gauge of Republican strength ahead of 2018's midterm elections.

(Left) PA Supreme Court, (Right) Office of Lt. Gov. Mike Stack

Federal judges are letting voters who successfully challenged Pennsylvania's congressional district map fight a lawsuit by eight Republican congressmen seeking to overturn the decision.

The judges granted a request Thursday by the 18 voters to join the lawsuit as defendants, along with two senior state elections officials under Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf.

The decision came during a session to sort out issues ahead of a hearing next week.

Chris Knight / AP

Pennsylvania’s three candidates for the Republican nomination for governor are vying to distinguish themselves to voters as the May 15 primary election draws closer.

Patrick Semansky / AP

Former Vice President Joe Biden is heading to Pennsylvania to campaign for a Democratic congressional candidate trying for an upset in an upcoming special election.

Conor Lamb's campaign and Biden aides confirm that the two men will appear together twice Tuesday, one week before the March 13 election between Lamb and Republican Rick Saccone.

Lamb is trying to win in a Pittsburgh-area district that President Donald Trump won by almost 20 percentage points in 2016. Polls suggest a tight race for the seat that opened when Republican Rep. Tim Murphy resigned last year.

State Disputes Claim 100K Noncitizens Registered To Vote

Mar 1, 2018
Matt Rourke / AP

Pennsylvania election officials said Wednesday that there is no evidence to back up a claim that more than 100,000 noncitizen immigrants had been registered to vote in the state, responding to a conservative group's lawsuit in federal court.

The Department of State, in a statement to The Associated Press, said it is reviewing data and that the figure "is not confirmed by any substantive analysis by the Department. It is not a credible figure and there is no reason to believe it to be accurate."

State Lawmaker Accused Of Assaults, Including Forced Sex

Mar 1, 2018
Pennsylvania House of Representatives / legis.state.pa.gov

*Updated

A state representative was urged Thursday by House Republican leaders to resign amid allegations he forced a woman to have sex after they broke up and threatened to kill another while driving at a high speed and brandishing a gun.

Rich Copeland / WITF

Pennsylvania’s newly redrawn 10th Congressional District—which now encompasses both Harrisburg and York—is getting a new candidate.

 

Christina Hartman, who lost a high-profile congressional race to Republican Lloyd Smucker in 2016, is jumping into the 10th after leaving her Lancaster County district.

 

Hartman said the days since Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court redrew the congressional map have been tumultuous.

 

AP Photo

In the wake of the Florida school shooting that killed 17 people, Pennsylvania US Senator Pat Toomey was among a number of lawmakers who met with President Trump Wednesday to discuss new gun control measures.

The second-term Republican's main proposal is a measure that would expand background checks for firearm purchases to include sales online and at gun shows.

The bipartisan bill is cosponsored by West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin; a version was first introduced after 2012's Sandy Hook shooting, and narrowly defeated.

Keith Srakocic / AP


Congressional campaigns across Pennsylvania remain in flux since the state's high court issued a new congressional map last week. If the map survives a pending GOP lawsuit, it would take effect for the May primary.

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