Monday, February 8, 2016

Archive: June, 2012

POSTED: Friday, June 29, 2012, 8:44 AM

Gov. Corbett's brief comments Thursday on the Supreme Court upholding the controversial health-care law -- after which he declined to take questions -- wasn't the first time he was more political and less than specific on the issue.

Thursday, he read a statement from a podium outside his office. He said he was "disappointed,"offered a rendition of Republican talking points, said the law "may turn out to be one of the largest tax increases in the history of our nation," threw in a political plug -- "now more than ever we need change in Washington" -- and left.

Shortly thereafter, the Romney campaign issued a statement from Corbett that said, in part, "We need a leader who understands that real healthcare reform shouldn’t be a burden to taxpayers or come at the cost of American jobs. That leader is Mitt Romney.”

POSTED: Thursday, June 28, 2012, 8:39 AM

As someone old enough to have experienced nuns as a central part of my grade school and high school education, I can't get enough of the Nuns on the Bus tour.

It hits Harrisburg Thursday and Philadelphia Friday and Saturday.

Anyone who's been taught by nuns knows their combination of smarts, commitment, dedication to work and (sometimes) fierce enforcement of discipline suggests this is a tour you don't want to mess with.

POSTED: Wednesday, June 27, 2012, 8:44 AM

The last Pennsylvania Republican governor who was a former prosecutor named Tom used his first year in office to push law-and-order measures that led to more prisons, mandatory sentences and an explosion of prison populations and budgets.

That was Tom Ridge, who'd been an assistant DA in Erie before elected to Congress then the governorship, and that was 17 years ago.

Now, Tom Corbett, a former Allegheny County assistant DA, former U.S. Attorney and former attorney general, is set to sign legislation aimed at greatly reducing prison populatons and budgets.

POSTED: Tuesday, June 26, 2012, 9:05 AM

In case you missed it, House Republican Leader Mike Turzai seems to have confirmed Democratic assertions that the state's new Voter ID law is intended to help Republican candidates win elections rather than combat voter fraud.

During remarks to a Republican State Committee meeting Saturday, Turzai was ticking off GOP agenda items and said:

“Pro-Second Amendment? The Castle Doctrine, it’s done. First pro-life legislation – abortion facility regulations – in 22 years, done. Voter ID, which is gonna allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania, done.”

POSTED: Monday, June 25, 2012, 8:56 AM

Back in November 2009 I wrote a column questioning whether we've become a city, state and nation that no longer is governable.

The AP Monday reports on a new poll showing most Americans don't think the economy will much improve no matter who's elected president.

Reminded me of what I wrote in `09. And it's not a cheery thought.

POSTED: Friday, June 22, 2012, 9:02 AM

Finally, a presidential poll rating the candidates as Sugar Daddies.

Yep, the self-proclaimed world's largest Sugar Daddy dating website,, polled 30,000 of its female members, or, as they're known, "Sugar Babies," on the question of who'd they'd rather have as their SD, Obama or Romney.

The poll was conducted in 17 large states, including Pennsylvania. It found that despite the fact Romney is 20 times wealthier than Obama (and wealth is always a plus in any Sugar Daddy competition), the "babies" picked Obama by margins of 3-to-1.

POSTED: Thursday, June 21, 2012, 9:01 AM

After the 2010 elections when Pennsylvanians put Republican Tom Corbett in the governor's office and the GOP in control of the Legislature, I wrote more than once that elections have consequences.

Those consequences are playing out, depending on your ideology, for better or worse.

It appears the guv and legislative leaders are agreed on a new budget to take effect July 1 that includes breaks for business and cuts in welfare, which is, after all, the Republican way.

POSTED: Tuesday, June 19, 2012, 8:38 AM

I guess Penn State doesn't enough to deal with.

So now, in the Legislature's hectic rush to finalize a budget before July 1 and leave for a long summer recess, comes word from the Senate that PSU kids could face a tougher time trying to drown their sorrows or celebrate their youth by doing what they do so well.

Yep, two bills passed out of the Senate Monday to crack down on student drinking by upping fines for underage drinking and public drunkeness.

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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