Turn PA Blue


09

Mar 2018

STUDENTS HAVE “NO FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT TO EQUALITY IN EDUCATION”

Yes, you read this title correctly. Patrick M. Northen, a lawyer for Mike Turzai, the Republican Speaker of the Pennsylvania House, made that pronouncement this past Wednesday, March 7, at a hearing to determine whether a lawsuit by an interesting coalition of the NAACP and the Pennsylvania Association of Rural and Small Schools should proceed...

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19

Feb 2018

TURN PA BLUE – WHAT HAS OUR LEGISLATURE DONE ABOUT GUN CONTROL

Whenever a tragedy, like the one in Florida last week, hits, many of us look to the Federal government for relief. Unfortunately, that did not materialize after Sandy Hook. But Connecticut has made positive legislative changes since the massacre there in 2012, and despite what the detractors say, these laws are working.     Pennsylvania...

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06

Feb 2018

TURN PA BLUE – FIGHTING THE RED MENACE IN PENNSYLVANIA

None of us are under the delusion that our canvassing, phone banking, fund-raising, etc., have made a bigger impact upon changing the political landscape in Pennsylvania over the past year than the events that have occurred at the national level. Yet the outrage that many of us have felt against the Federal Government pales against...

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22

Jan 2018

WHY RED TAPE IS “RED”

How do you trim an extensive bureaucracy? Republicans in the State legislature have a rather interesting solution: Increase the size of that bureaucracy. Two recent bills in the Pennsylvania legislature this year disclose the convoluted Republican thought processes that go into creating bad legislation in the name of good government. Consider, first, House Bill 1659,...

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05

Jan 2018

A BROKEN NEW YEARS RESOLUTION

Two-thousand eighteen has barely begun, and Republicans are already finding it difficult to keep a New Years resolution that they had made in the previous legislative session. House Bill 153, introduced by Representative Jerry Knowles (R, Berks, Carbon, and Schuylkill counties), with co-sponsorship from the Republican leadership, passed both the House and Senate in the...

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22

Dec 2017

HOLIDAY NEWSLETTER

The holiday season is always a good time to reflect upon the past year, especially when national events overshadow what is happening in our own back yard.  This email highlights some of the reasons why we are trying to turn PA Blue, and summarizes upon the results of our efforts (particularly the May and November...

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27

Nov 2017

TURNING LEMONS INTO SOUR GRAPES

The Pennsylvania Republicans have been offering us some sneak previews of their strategy for winning the 2018 State elections. A summary of this strategy appeared in an Inquirer op-ed by Laura Ellsworth, a Pittsburgh lawyer who hopes to be the Republican candidate for Governor. She writes, “And the so-called budget that just resulted from [Governor...

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19

Nov 2017

WISE WORDS FROM SRC MEMBER BILL GREEN?

November is generally a gloomy month. Not this year – at least in Philadelphia. We’ve elected a progressive DA into office, while the Delaware Valley continues to look bluer and bluer. This week we were handed another piece of good news when Philadelphia’s reviled School Reform Commission (SRC) voted itself out of existence. Of course,...

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03

Nov 2017

PA BUDGET FOR 2017-2018

Yes, Lincoln Steffens found corruption in all of the cities that he had researched for his 1904 masterpiece, The Shame of the Cities.  But only in Philadelphia did he find that the politicians were corrupt, and the citizens contented.   Incarnations of corruption in the City can still be seen today in the embodiment of the...

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31

Oct 2017

THE STATE CONSTITUTION: TO RECREATE OR ENFORCE

There is something disingenuous about Rep. Stephen Bloom’s (R., Cumberland) effort to “fix…our broken state government.” He, along with Sen. John Eichelberger (R., Blair) have expressed the desire to create a constitutional convention to improve governance in Pennsylvania.  I certainly believe that our principal governing document needs improvement, but what assurance do we have that...

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