Monday, March 2, 2015

POSTED: Thursday, February 26, 2015, 8:58 AM
TV personality Donald Trump attends a "Celebrity Apprentice" red carpet event at Trump Tower on February 3, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker (Getty Images)

If one was to make a political horror story, recent suggestions that Donald Trump and Joe Biden are considering running for president would certainly provide a plot line.

The Associated Press reports Biden was in New Hampshire, the nation's first primary state, this week after visits to Iowa, the nation's first caucus state, and South Carolina, a critical southern primary state.

The Washington Post earlier this month, under a headline "Joe Biden really wants to run," quoted Biden saying there's "no obvious reason" why he shouldn't seek the White House.

POSTED: Tuesday, February 24, 2015, 8:37 AM

Here we go again.

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, while attending a governors' conference in Washington over the weekend, said Pennsylvania's big problem is "low self-esteem."

This, naturally, drew immediate fire from the other side. State Senate Republican Leader Jake Corman said Wolf is blaming the people of the state for its challenges, adding, "It is insulting to Pennsylvanians who get up every day and work hard for their families."

POSTED: Wednesday, February 18, 2015, 8:13 AM
What this whole case needs is a dose of Al Pacino in his 1979 role as a defense lawyer in the film "...And Justice for All."

Ok, look, if you're following the seemingly unending and ever-twisting case of Kathleen Kane and leaks, I have a suggestion: bring in Al Pacino.

The latest, as reported in the Inky, says the case that started with the leak of a sting case that Kane didn't pursue that then led to a leak in another case that Kane's alleged leaker didn't pursue that then led to leaks about Kane being under investigation for leaking that case has led to calls for possible discipline of one of Kane's lawyers/advisors, Lanny Davis, for leaking information that the Supreme Court leaked to reporters.

Got it?

POSTED: Monday, February 16, 2015, 8:40 AM
(Photo from store.nixonfoundation.org)

Here's a little Presidents' Day fun brought to you by the Dollar Shave Club which sells low-cost home-delivery razor blades and evidently has a sense of humor and history.

A recent shipment included a flier listing memorable moments from "The First Bathroom."

It notes our third president, Thomas Jefferson (1801-1809), practiced a daily bathroom routine of a cold foot bath which he attributed to a lifetime of good health. He allegedly frosted his feet every morning until his death at age 83. Brrr.

POSTED: Wednesday, February 11, 2015, 8:55 AM
The Bellevue, Broad and Walnut streets in Philadelphia. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports taxpayers foot the bill for an office for the Guv on the 11th floor of the iconic and expensive Bellevue to the tune of $13,136 per month ($157,632 a-year) under a lease that runs until 2019. (Photo from bellevuephiladelphia.com)

Just so you know there are some good ideas in Harrisburg, here's a few from a state Senator bent on reform.

Oh, and as a bonus, Ed Rendell weighs in on that fat lease for office space for the governor in Philly.

First, the ideas.

POSTED: Tuesday, February 10, 2015, 8:45 AM
The Bellevue, Broad and Walnut streets in Philadelphia. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports taxpayers foot the bill for an office for the Guv on the 11th floor of the iconic and expensive Bellevue to the tune of $13,136 per month ($157,632 a-year) under a lease that runs until 2019. (Photo from bellevuephiladelphia.com)

Well that didn't take long.

Just days after Gov. Wolf announced formation of his Office of Transformation, Innovation, Management and Efficiency to save money and improve government, comes a quick example of one way to do so.

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports taxpayers foot the bill for an office for the Guv on the 11th floor of the iconic and expensive Bellevue on Broad Street to the tune of $13,136 per month ($157,632 a-year) under a lease that runs until 2019.

POSTED: Tuesday, January 27, 2015, 8:32 AM
Senator Pat Toomey on December 19, 2011. ( Sharon Gekoski-Kimmel / Staff Photographer )

(A brief discussion twixt Baer & Baer's editor, a/k/a BE)

JB: Yo, boss, ya see that early poll of the 2016 Senate race?

BE: Come on, it's barely 2015. Already?

POSTED: Wednesday, January 21, 2015, 8:22 AM
Tom Wolf extends his arms to the crowd as he walks to the podium after being sworn in as Pennsylvania's 47th governor in a noontime ceremony on the east side of the State Capitol Building on Jan 20, 2015. CHARLES FOX / Staff Photographer

Regular readers of this blog or my column know of my constant complaining about the lack of political participation in Pennsylvania, the cradle of democracy.

They know I argue that without greater citizen interest in the process, government and elected officials can do or not do what they please.

And so, while I'm grateful Tom Wolf mentioned this lack of interest in his inaugural address on Tuesday, I feel the need to quibble.

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 baerj@phillynews.com.

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 baerj@phillynews.com.

John Baer Daily News Political Columnist
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