Tuesday, March 3, 2015

POSTED: Wednesday, December 3, 2014, 9:13 AM
Pa. Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane. (MICHAEL S. WIRTZ / File Photograph)

State Attorney General Kathleen Kane hasn't had the best couple months.

There was that accident that gave her a concussion. And that grand jury appearance on her alleged leak of sealed legal info, at which she showed up with personally-paid-for, high-powered New York and D.C. lawyers.

There were misstatements that had to be clarified. And there are overall questions about her fitness for high office, including a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette editorial last Sunday calling her "Calamity Kane" and asking if she's "in over her head."

POSTED: Tuesday, December 2, 2014, 8:54 AM
(istock photo)

And so on #Giving Tuesday, a global effort encouraging charity, we get a new study on giving in all 50 states.

And Pennsylvania, birthplace of American democracy, cradle of the nation? As in oh so many things, we rank in the bottom third.

Wallet Hub, an Internet personal finance service, ranked states on the basis of volunteerism, median contributions to charity and more.

POSTED: Monday, December 1, 2014, 8:51 AM

The first Monday after Thanksgiving is something of an official state holiday in Pennsylvania.

It's the first day of hunting season.

That means lots of schools across the state are closed and lots of residents take to the woods in hopes of bagging a deer.

POSTED: Wednesday, November 26, 2014, 8:49 AM
Pennsylvania Governor-elect Tom Wolf. (Tom Gralish / Staff Photographer)

(A brief discussion twixt Baer and Baer's editor, a.k.a. BE)

JB: Yo, boss, recall that "Baer Growls" blog post last week about the Capitol Preservation Committee looking to remodel the ornate Office of the Governor?

BE: Yeah, sure, cuz it's the only place in the 600-plus room domed building that hasn't had a redo during an ongoing 17-year process.

POSTED: Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 8:47 AM

Come on, you just knew it was going to happen.

You just knew when that porn-at-work thing in the Office of Attorney General broke in September there were other state employees taking deep breaths (and not from excitement) while trying to scrub their email in-boxes and sent items.

So now, of course, we've got another state agency where workers have been reprimanded and in some cases suspended for trading porn at work on government computers.

POSTED: Thursday, November 20, 2014, 9:02 AM

Don't go to church? Ever? You're likely voting Democratic.

Woman voter angry at the GOP's "war on women?" You're numbers are anemic.

Those conclusions come from a trove of national exit polling data from this year's mid-term elections.

POSTED: Wednesday, November 19, 2014, 8:53 AM

And now comes news that in Tom Wolf's lean and leaner plans for serving in office it could be a long time before he gets, well, an office.

You likely already know that the incoming Democratic governor is foregoing his state salary and benefits, choosing not to the live in the Governor's Mansion in Harrisburg and planning to drive his Jeep to and from work in the Capitol from his York County home 22 miles away.

Well, the Harrisburg Patriot-News now is reporting there's a possibility a long-planned renovation of the Governor's Office, actually a suite of offices on the third floor, south-end of the Capitol, could displace Wolf for up to a year.

POSTED: Thursday, November 13, 2014, 8:56 AM

A little-noted result of the 2014 elections puts Pennsylvania in an interesting, maybe even unique position with regard to political power in a state that often seems electorally schizophrenic.

Think about it. We routinely vote Democratic in presidential elections and lately (and increasingly) Republican in legislative elections. And overall we currently split the difference in terms of public clout.

All three statewide row offices are held by Democrats: Attorney General Kathleen Kane; Auditor General Gene DePasquale; Treasurer Rob McCord (remember him?).

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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