Pennsylvania

PA-Sen: Casey Hammers Senate Republicans, Calls Iran Letter “Reckless”

Posted: March 12, 2015 on PoliticsPA.com

Democratic Senator Bob Casey made a strong statement against Senate Republicans who sent a controversial letter to Iranian leaders on Wednesday regarding its nuclear weapons program.

“This is a misguided and reckless attempt to circumvent a sitting U.S. President by going directly to the leader of the Iranian regime – a longtime adversary of the United States,” Sen. Casey said.

“It is clear that many Americans find it offensive.”

The letter was the brainchild of Arkansas freshman Senator Tom Cotton.

In a USA Today article by Cotton, he said the letter was written to “inform [Iran] of the role Congress plays in approving their agreement. Our goal is simple: to stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.”

Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey was one of those other 46 Republicans who also signed the letter.

“No one has been tougher on this issue than I,” Casey wrote. “We should be focusing on bipartisan policy, not engaging in partisan theatrics.”

The letter could discourage Tehran from reaching a deal with President Obama because it stated that any nuclear agreement could be voided by a future administration or Congress itself.

Cotton claims that the Senators who signed the letter were “simply speaking for the American people” with the hope to prevent a bad deal which could lead to Iran developing a nuclear weapon.

Many Democrats and some Republicans have joined the outcry against the letter, asserting that it was an unprecedented attempt to undermine President Obama.

Republicans Angry with Wolf Over Reports of Sales Tax Hike

Posted: February 26, 2015 on PoliticsPA.com

Republicans are accusing Gov. Tom Wolf of breaking a campaign promise.

In the last few days, the Governor has revealed some of the details of his upcoming budget address.

As KDKA’s Jon Delano reported, this will involve a mix of tax hikes and tax cuts.

One of the increases is reported to be bumping the state sales tax up from 6% to 6.6% and expanding said tax to cover clothing and professional services.

This has the Republican Party of Pennsylvania up in arms alleging that Wolf is flip-flopping from his stance during his 2014 gubernatorial campaign.

“Governor Wolf is breaking his promise to voters not to raise the sales tax after less than two months in office,” Republican Party of PA Communications Director Megan Sweeney said.

“Throughout the course of his campaign, Governor Wolf gave very few specifics about his plans for Pennsylvania but clearly portrayed himself as an opponent of raising the sales tax, only to break his promise to the voters with this first major act.”

Citing a July 2014 report from the Associated Press, state Republicans point out that Wolf said he did not support an increase in sales tax because he felt like the burden fell on low-income consumers.

“Does Governor Tom Wolf still believe that raising the sales tax would disproportionately hurt lower-income Pennsylvania like he said in July?” Sweeney said.

“When did Governor Wolf decide to admit his support for drastically raising the sales tax?”

Wolf will officially propose his first budget as Governor next Tuesday in front of the State Legislature. Of course, whatever he proposes will require legislative support from Republicans who hold the majority in both the State House and Senate.

Poll: Hillary Clinton Early Favorite in PA for President in 2016

Posted: January 19, 2015 on PoliticsPA.com

A recent Mercyhurst University survey has yielded a window into tomorrow, specifically the 2016 presidential election. The poll showed that registered voters in Pennsylvania have favorable opinions on potential Democratic nominees like Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden. On the other side, the Republican hopefuls were seen as less favorable.

Clinton led all potential candidates with 57% of respondents giving a favorable opinion.

In the breakdown of these opinions towards Clinton, the survey showed that 32% of voters felt “somewhat favorable” whereas 25 percent said they felt “strongly favorable” towards the former Secretary of State.

Clinton was far and away the most well-received potential nominee in this category. Fellow Democrat Joe Biden, for instance, finished second collecting only a 16 percent “strongly favorable” opinion.

Overall, Biden was just shy of Clinton with 55% of the respondents giving a favorable opinion.

Not a single Republican broke the 50 percent threshold.

Leading the field of potential Republican nominees, Jeb Bush took home a 42 percent favorable opinion with only eight percent saying Bush is “strongly favorable.”

Chris Christie and PA native Rick Santorum finished close behind with both receiving a 40% favorable opinion.

Only 30 percent of the respondents identified as Republicans while 39 percent claimed affiliation with the Democrats. Compare that to the breakdown on ideology which showed 27 percent identified as conservative, 23 percent as liberal and 31 percent as moderate.

The poll was conducted on 434 registered Pennsylvania voters between January 7 and January 16, 2015. The margin of error is plus or minus 4.75%.

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