Friday, February 12, 2016

Corbett's boozie fundraising

Gov. Corbett's reelection campaign is looking to raise money off the liquor privatization issue. Here's to change, er, dollars.

Corbett's boozie fundraising

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett

Political fundraising often gets creative and plays off timely issues.

Take a current effort by the Tom Corbett for Governor committee (which, if you think about it, is oddly named since Tom Corbett IS governor).

As the guv and lawmakers hammer away at attempts yet again to privatize the state's liquor monopoly, a top Corbett fundraiser, Nan McLaughlin, is soliciting cash for the fight.

I'm not exactly sure how giving "$10, $25, $50 or whatever you can afford" to Corbett's reelection helps current efforts to get a booze bill passed by June 30.

But a mass email from McLaughlin says, "We need your help!...(to) continue the fight to get Pennsylvania out of the liquor business once and for all."

The email also quotes Corbett's point man on the issue, Lt. Gov. Cawley, as quoting Ronald Reagan, who once said, "A government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth."

It's a good line.

The email, titled "embracing change," also says, "You deserve the same rights and convenience as individuals in 48 other states! We are very close but special interest opponents are fighting to keep the status quo."

Okay. But, again, how does giving money to a political campaign for an election more than a year away help to get a liquor bill passed now?

It's almost as if the Corbett reelect effort thinks privatization isn't happening anytime soon and so what you need to do is help fund Corbett's path to a second term so that he can "continue the fight."

Or the Corbett campaign wants money now to give to the campaign funds of lawmakers not "embracing change."

Or political fundraisers just grab any hot issue they can in hopes of convincing donors that more money to their candidate is the way to change government policy.

You don't think that's the case, do you?

Daily News Political Columnist
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About this blog
John Baer has been covering politics and government for the Daily News since 1987. The National Journal in 2002 called Baer one of the country's top 10 political journalists outside Washington, saying Baer has, "the ability to take the skin off a politician without making it hurt too much." E-mail John at

John is the author of the book "On The Front Lines of Pennsylvania Politics: Twenty-Five Years of Keystone Reporting" (The History Press, 2012). Reach John at

John Baer Daily News Political Columnist
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