When Republicans Attack

Republicans in Harrisburg are pissed. For the first time in 12 years, Democrats control two major parts of state government. We have the governorship and a slim majority in the Pa. House of Representatives. The change has been dramatic.

Legislation that directly benefits Philadelphia actually has a fighting shot at being enacted. The best example is Rendell’s proposal to place tolls on I-80 to partially fund SEPTA. The new state budget is full of things, like increased funding for k-12 education or money to expand the convention center, which would have never seen the light of day when the GOP controlled the state house. This is driving Republicans and their conservative allies crazy.

This means that Republicans will do what they do best: attack Democrats. And we’ve got to be ready. Click “Read More” for the rest of “When Republicans Attack.”

We need to be prepared to defend the majority in the state house and hopefully expand it during the next election cycle. The Republicans will do everything in their power to keep this from happening. The right-wing has well-funded and well-organized network of activists, such as the Young Conservatives of PA, that will do everything they can to smear Democrats. We have to be prepared to fight back.

First, the electoral component. None of the seats in Philadelphia are in danger of being taken by the Republicans, so it’s important to funnel resources into elections that are going to be competitive. Many of these races are in suburban Philadelphia, so there should be lots of opportunities for Philadelphians to make a meaningful impact. We have a lot people and a few buses full of volunteers could make a big difference!

Second, we have to be prepared to defend Democrats from unfair attacks in the media. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review is wholly-owned subsidy of the right-wing of the Republican Party and we can sure they will run endless stories designed to weaken our majority. Unfortunately, conservatives have a serious right-wing noise machine (Grassroots Pa, for example) that amplifies their narrative and weakens ours. I plan to keep a close eye on the Inquirer, Daily News, and other media coverage. We’ve got to call out bias and push the media to give fair coverage.

These are just a few examples. Democrats in Harrisburg are delivering for Philadelphia. We’ve got to have their back. What else can we do?

First, Democrats have

First, Democrats have control of one branch of government--the executive. The legislature is split--the State Senate remains a part of the state legislature. Unless you control both, you have no real control over the whole branch.

Second, Ben is correct, the races outside of Philadelphia are vitally important to maintaining this majority.

But, the races in Philadelphia are important to ensuring that Philadelphians have decent representation in Harrisburg. As I am sure everyone is aware, I have spend the better part of a year working to re-site and/or mitigate the effects that two casinos will have on Philadelphia's neighborhoods. I'm not alone, there are many, many people doing the same. Some, like me, are members of the DRNA--a coalition of community organizations who are spearheading the effort on behalf of communities. I speak for myself alone when I say one of the biggest travesties to hit Philadelphia's thriving communities has been ACT 71 and the siting of these casinos.

In addition to casinos, many members of our delegation have been absent for quite some time. What good is a majority for Philadelphians, when your own legislators do not drive the agenda and haven't done so for years? Many of the problems of democracts in Delaware and Montgomery Counties are different than the problems of Philadelphians. It is a simple fact. Undoubtedly, Rep. Evans, Sen. Fumo, Rep. O'Brien (speaker) (I'm not endorsing anyone, just making a statement about clout) have clout and get things done for Philadelphia, but our delegation is much larger than that. It is time for Philadelphia legislators, en masse, to step up. Otherwise, I fear the majority in Harrisburg will have a much different legislative agenda than Philadelphians.

Ben is correct, in many seats here in Philadelphia, democrats will prevail. But, just because it is assured a "D" will be there, doesn't make it a good thing. So, when deciding what you want to do, I'd suggest looking to where you live first. "All politics are local."

I am working to elect Larry Farnese to the General Assembly. Unless otherwise expressly stated, this and every comment or blog I post on YPP and any action I take hereon is solely attributable to me and not Farnese or Friends of Farnese

Gaetano,

Gaetano,

You are right that Democrats only control on branch of the legislature. However, having Democrats in control of the Pa. House absolutely has a positive impact. Republicans in the Senate, many of whom are extremely right-wing, are forced to negotiate with Democrats because we control the Pa. House. Am I misreading you? Are you saying that having Democrats in control of the Pa. House is meaningless unless we control the Pa. Senate as well? If that's what you're saying than I disagree completely and am willing to argue the point a little bit more.

There are obviously problems with the Philadelphia delegation. I think the best example was William Rieger, who was thankfully replaced by Tony Payton, Jr. However, right now, I think it's much more important that Democrats maintain control over Pa. House than challenging members of the delegation. If there were unlimited resources, then I would say go for it. However, there aren't. We've got to be strategic. I am trying to argue that maintaining and expanding the Democratic majority in the Pa. House is one of the most important things for us to focus on in the upcoming cycle.

-Ben
---
Check out my blog!

What I'm saying is this--we

What I'm saying is this--we do not have control of two branches, but 1.5 branches of government. The House is not meaningless, but it alone is not a branch of government. We have a bicameral legislature. Nothing more, nothing less. You can't say we control the legislature. In fact, I'll agree the Republicans in the State Senate are very conservative.

I am working to elect Larry Farnese to the General Assembly. Unless otherwise expressly stated, this and every comment or blog I post on YPP and any action I take hereon is solely attributable to me and not Farnese or Friends of Farnese

Yes

You are right that we don't control the legislature and I will change that.

---
Check out my blog!

can we agree to disagree?

Disclaimer--I'm taking off my organizational hat for a minute here.

I think that the issue that Ben raises is an important one that lots of progressives struggle with--how do we apportion resources. We all struggle with this issue, whether the resources that we have to bring to bear are a couple of hours of volunteer work in a month, a couple of dollars to contribute to a candidate, quitting our jobs for a few months to work full-time on an election, or something bigger.

Most of us aren't willing to make sacrifices--of time, money or livelihood--unless it's for something in which we truly believe. And 'keeping the state house for the Democrats' may not be that, for some people.

But you know what? You don't have to make that decision right now. You could spend the next few months watching what the majority party does in Harrisburg that advances your vision of a more just society. You could also spend that time looking at what the right-wing of the minority party tries to do, and see how your vision squares up with that.

And I'm not just talking about things that are local to Philadelphia. I'm talking about things that are good for Pennsylvania workers, generally. Or things that are good for Pennsylvania women, generally. Or things that are good--or bad--for immigrants, the LGBT population, people of color, low-income folks.

If at the end of that observation, you decide that the only thing that motivates you enough to make the sacrifices you're willing to make is the chance to replace a Democrat with another Democrat, then so be it.

It's a little hard for me to imagine that someone could make that choice, but I'll try to respect it. I hope that the people here who are committed to local representation will be equally respectful of those of us who have more of a statewide perspective.

Absolutely. Nothing is

Absolutely. Nothing is wrong with either choice. And, we should also remember, the state democratic caucus will put all its might into the burbs for elections too. And, that is fine strategy for the party.

I don't, however, think it hard to imagine (someone would make that choice). I think it is perfectly reasonable. But, I'm a reasonable person and believe either choice is justifiable. There we will have to agree to disagree.

I wanted to present the opposite viewpoint, however. That some of the city races will be worthwhile. And, further, that without strong Philadelphia representation, Philly will lose out like it typically does.

I am working to elect Larry Farnese to the General Assembly. Unless otherwise expressly stated, this and every comment or blog I post on YPP and any action I take hereon is solely attributable to me and not Farnese or Friends of Farnese

What does Farnese stand for?

I have seen Farnese a couple of times. He strikes me as somewhat conservative or middle of the road. I'm not enamored with Josephs but, at least, she's an out & out liberal. What's Farnese's view on greater funding for social programs & raising Pa. taxes to pay for them? Does he believe that Pa. funding for the poor is adequate or do we need to increase it? How about more monies for education in our state?

Carter--

I am told that his website will unveil shortly. When that happens, I will post a link to it for you. It would be a much better summary than what I could write.

Plus, I do not want to be percieved as blogging on behalf of the campaign. As I say below, I blog for myself.

I am working to elect Larry Farnese to the General Assembly. Unless otherwise expressly stated, this and every comment or blog I post on YPP and any action I take hereon is solely attributable to me and not Farnese or Friends of Farnese

You can Check Out Larry's New Website Here:

http://www.larryfarnese.com/

In response to your inquiry.

I am working to elect Larry Farnese to the General Assembly. Unless otherwise expressly stated, this and every comment or blog I post on YPP and any action I take hereon is solely attributable to me and not Farnese or Friends of Farnese

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Syndicate content