Hanger wins straw poll in Dem governor's race

John Hanger, who has fashioned himself the true progressive in the race for the Democratic nomination for governor, won a straw poll of liberal activists attending the Pennsylvania Progressive Summit over the weekend.

After the progressives heard six of the candidates for governor debate Friday night, Hanger won with 31.5 percent of the vote, to 24 percent for state Treasurer Rob McCord and 22.8 percent for York businessman Tom Wolf.

Katie McGinty was fourth, winning 10.9 percent, followed closely by U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz with 9.4 percent. Lebanon County Commissioner Jo Ellen Litz and former state Auditor General Jack Wagner each received less than 1 percent of the 267 votes cast. (Wagner did not attend the debate.)

“This is a very important victory,” Hanger said, adding that conference attendees “represent the conscience of the Democratic party and the heart of its activist community.”

Hanger said his win “conclusively” that his message of “jobs, not jails” and legalized, tax marijuana is resonating with core primary voters.

Schwartz won the straw poll at last year’s conference.