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Turzai to Resign June 15

Posted by Chad Baker on June 11, 2020 at 10:30 AM Comments comments (3)

House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny) announced on Wednesday that he will retire from the House on June 15. His decision marks the end of a legislative career that significantly impacted Pennsylvania politics over the past two decades.

 

In an hour long farewell, Turzai reflected upon his time in elected office and thanked a number of people who helped him along the way, while also detailing some of the issues that were most important to him. A conservative Republican, he specifically highlighted his support for school choice, job opportunities in the private sector, pro-life policies, and more.

To read the entire article from PoliticsPA.com click https://www.politicspa.com/turzai-to-resign-june-15/94760/" target="_blank">https://www.politicspa.com/turzai-to-resign-june-15/94760/.

BLM Peaceful Protest in Hanover, PA on June 6, 2020

Posted by Chad Baker on June 8, 2020 at 10:00 AM Comments comments (0)

BLM Peaceful Protest in Hanover, PA on June 6, 2020

 

On D-Day…On Omaha Beach…They fought for our flag so that we can breathe. They fought for our freedoms so that we can kneel to be heard. They fought for liberty and justice for all.

 

This is BLM’s Omaha Beach. And we all must fight so that we can breathe. We must fight until all people are heard. We must fight for liberty and justice for all.

 

We have been on this mountain before. And the fact is what we are SEEING are the VOICES of the UNHEARD. This is a reset button. This a reboot. This is not an end but rather a BEGINNING.

 

But we need more than just Police Reform. We need Systemic Change. It must begin in Washington, DC, and continue through to Harrisburg and our local governments. We need Restorative Justice.

 

It seems impossible as we stand here today, but it isn’t. We are all just one line in a notebook. But one line can change a whole page, the whole story.

 

Muhammad Ali, who not only fought in the ring but also fought for justice said this about the word IMPOSSIBLE. Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.

 

Rich Sterner,

Candidate, PA Senate District 33

Biden formally clinches Democratic presidential nomination

Posted by Chad Baker on June 8, 2020 at 8:00 AM Comments comments (0)

By STEPHEN OHLEMACHER and WILL WEISSERT
from https://bit.ly/2Unu7EG

WASHINGTON (AP) — Joe Biden formally clinched the Democratic presidential nomination Friday, setting him up for a bruising challenge to President Donald Trump that will play out against the unprecedented backdrop of a pandemic, economic collapse and civil unrest.

 

“It was an honor to compete alongside one of the most talented groups of candidates the Democratic party has ever fielded,” Biden said in a statement Friday night, ”and I am proud to say that we are going into this general election a united party.”

 

The former vice president has effectively been his party’s leader since his last challenger in the Democratic primary, Bernie Sanders, ended his campaign in April. But Biden pulled together the 1,991 delegates needed to become the nominee after seven states and the District of Columbia held presidential primaries Tuesday.

Biden reached the threshold three days after the primaries because several states, overwhelmed by huge increases in mail ballots, took days to tabulate results. A team of analysts at The Associated Press then parsed the votes into individual congressional districts. Democrats award most delegates to the party’s national convention based on results in individual congressional districts.

 

Biden now has 1,995 delegates, with contests still to come in eight states and three U.S. territories.

The moment was met with little of the traditional fanfare as the nation confronts overlapping crises. While Biden has started to venture out more this week, the coronavirus pandemic has largely confined him to his Wilmington, Delaware, home for much of the past three months.

 

The country faces the worst rate of unemployment since the Great Depression. And civil unrest that harkens back to the 1960s has erupted in dozens of cities following the death of George Floyd, a black man who died when a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck for several minutes even after he stopped moving and pleading for air.

 

It’s a confluence of events that no U.S. leader has faced in modern times, made all the more complicated by a president who has at times antagonized the protesters and is eager to take the fight to Biden.

 

“This is a difficult time in America’s history,” Biden said Friday night. “And Donald Trump’s angry, divisive politics is no answer. The country is crying out for leadership. Leadership that can unite us. Leadership that can bring us together.”

Biden spent 36 years in the Senate before becoming Barack Obama’s vice president. This is 77-year-old Biden’s third bid for the presidency and his success in capturing the Democratic nomination was driven by strong support from black voters.

 

He finished an embarrassing fourth place in the overwhelmingly white Iowa caucuses that kicked off the nomination process in February. Biden fared little better in the New Hampshire primary, where his standing was so low that he left the state before polls closed on election night to instead rally black voters in South Carolina.

 

His rebound began in the more diverse caucuses in Nevada but solidified in South Carolina, where Biden stomped Sanders, his nearest rival, by nearly 29 points. He followed that with a dominant showing three days later during the Super Tuesday contests, taking 10 of the 14 states.

 

Biden’s strong showing in states such as North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee and Texas reinforced his status as the preferred Democratic candidate of African American voters — but the relationship has not been without its strained moments. After a tense exchange with an influential black radio host, Biden took sharp criticism for suggesting that African American voters still deciding between him and Trump “ain’t black.”

 

That comment, and protests that have spread nationwide, have increased pressure on Biden to pick an African American running mate. He has already committed to picking a woman as a vice presidential candidate.

 

Black voters are unlikely to back Trump over Biden by a wide margin. A recent Fox News poll shows just 14% of African Americans who are registered to vote have a favorable opinion of the president compared with 75% who favorably view Biden.

 

But Biden must ensure that black voters are motivated to show up to the polls in November, especially in critical swing states that narrowly went for Trump in 2016.

 

At one point, the Democratic primary included dozens of candidates of different races, genders and generations and an openly gay man. The contest was dominated by debate over unapologetically progressive ideas, including fully government-funded health care under “Medicare for All” and a sweeping proposal to combat climate change known as the “Green New Deal.”

 

Biden prevailed by mostly offering more moderate approaches that he argued would make him more electable against Trump.

 

He refused to budge on his rejection of universal health care and some of the Green New Deal’s most ambitious provisions to combat climate change.

 

Since clinching the nomination, however, Biden has worked to build his appeal among progressives, forming joint task forces with Sanders’ campaign to find common ground on key issues like health care, the economy and the environment. Biden has also embraced a plan to forgive millions of Americans’ student debt, meaning that he clinches the nomination as easily the most liberal standard bearer the Democratic Party has ever had.

 

Biden’s embrace of his party’s left flank could help him consolidate a Democratic base that remained deeply divided after the 2016 primary and ultimately hurt Hillary Clinton in her defeat to Trump. But it could also undermine Biden’s attempts to rebuild the Obama coalition, which is often loosely defined as minorities and young people, as well as educated Americans and some working-class voters.

 

The former vice president has sought, since announcing his candidacy, to cast the election as a battle “for the soul of the nation,” and promised to restore order and dignity to the White House while rehabilitating the U.S. image on the world stage. Such an approach, though, necessarily focuses on being more of an alternative to Trump than offering radically new political ideas. And that further underscores Biden’s difficult task of trying to unite his party’s base while appealing to voters from far beyond it.

 

“I am going to spend every day between now and November 3rd fighting to earn the votes of Americans all across this great country,” Biden promised Friday, “so that, together, we can win the battle for the soul of this nation, and make sure that as we rebuild our economy, everyone comes along.”


Gov. Wolf says York and Adams counties can move into green phase. Here's what that means

Posted by Chad Baker on June 7, 2020 at 1:10 PM Comments comments (0)

from the https://www.ydr.com/story/news/2020/06/05/york-county-green-phase-gov-wolf-says-can-move-what-means-guidelines/3150138001/" target="_blank">York Daily Record:

York and Adams counties are going green.

And it doesn't have a thing to do with being eco-friendly.

 

After being under some kind of stay-at-home order and business closure since mid-March because of the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Tom Wolf announced Friday that York and Adams counties can reopen on June 12.

 

They are two of 12 counties that will go green next week. The others are Beaver, Carbon, Columbia, Cumberland, Juniata, Mifflin, Northumberland, Union, Wayne and Wyoming.

 

Seventeen counties were the first to go green last week. Sixteen more counties joined the phase Friday.

 

"I am very proud of our commonwealth in this point of our reopening," Wolf said Friday. "Keep in mind what we were trying to do in the red phase ... buy time. We needed to make sure we didn't overwhelm our healthcare system."

This means York and Adams residents will be able to get their hair cut, eat in restaurants, belly up to the bar, work out in large gyms and see movies in a cinema.



James Mattis Denounces President Trump, Describes Him as a Threat to the Constitution

Posted by Chad Baker on June 4, 2020 at 10:40 AM Comments comments (2)

from The Atlantic

Here is the text of the complete statement.

IN UNION THERE IS STRENGTH

I have watched this week’s unfolding events, angry and appalled. The words “Equal Justice Under Law” are carved in the pediment of the United States Supreme Court. This is precisely what protesters are rightly demanding. It is a wholesome and unifying demand—one that all of us should be able to get behind. We must not be distracted by a small number of lawbreakers. The protests are defined by tens of thousands of people of conscience who are insisting that we live up to our values—our values as people and our values as a nation.

When I joined the military, some 50 years ago, I swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution. Never did I dream that troops taking that same oath would be ordered under any circumstance to violate the Constitutional rights of their fellow citizens—much less to provide a bizarre photo op for the elected commander-in-chief, with military leadership standing alongside.

We must reject any thinking of our cities as a “battlespace” that our uniformed military is called upon to “dominate.” At home, we should use our military only when requested to do so, on very rare occasions, by state governors. Militarizing our response, as we witnessed in Washington, D.C., sets up a conflict—a false conflict—between the military and civilian society. It erodes the moral ground that ensures a trusted bond between men and women in uniform and the society they are sworn to protect, and of which they themselves are a part. Keeping public order rests with civilian state and local leaders who best understand their communities and are answerable to them.

James Madison wrote in Federalist 14 that “America united with a handful of troops, or without a single soldier, exhibits a more forbidding posture to foreign ambition than America disunited, with a hundred thousand veterans ready for combat.” We do not need to militarize our response to protests. We need to unite around a common purpose. And it starts by guaranteeing that all of us are equal before the law.

Instructions given by the military departments to our troops before the Normandy invasion reminded soldiers that “The Nazi slogan for destroying us…was ‘Divide and Conquer.’ Our American answer is ‘In Union there is Strength.’” We must summon that unity to surmount this crisis—confident that we are better than our politics. 

Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people—does not even pretend to try. Instead he tries to divide us. We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership. We can unite without him, drawing on the strengths inherent in our civil society. This will not be easy, as the past few days have shown, but we owe it to our fellow citizens; to past generations that bled to defend our promise; and to our children.

We can come through this trying time stronger, and with a renewed sense of purpose and respect for one another. The pandemic has shown us that it is not only our troops who are willing to offer the ultimate sacrifice for the safety of the community. Americans in hospitals, grocery stores, post offices, and elsewhere have put their lives on the line in order to serve their fellow citizens and their country. We know that we are better than the abuse of executive authority that we witnessed in Lafayette Square. We must reject and hold accountable those in office who would make a mockery of our Constitution. At the same time, we must remember Lincoln’s “better angels,” and listen to them, as we work to unite.

Only by adopting a new path—which means, in truth, returning to the original path of our founding ideals—will we again be a country admired and respected at home and abroad.

Elections run much smoother this time, York County voters say

Posted by Chad Baker on June 3, 2020 at 2:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Voting seemed to go more smoothly in Tuesday's primary at some of the polling places that had problems in the Nov. 5 municipal election, likely thanks to changes made by the York County Board of Commissioners and the county Board of Elections.

https://www.yorkdispatch.com/story/news/2020/06/02/elections-run-much-smoother-than-time-york-county-voters-say/3124559001/" target="_blank">Click to read the entire York Dispatch article


Furloughed York County workers help with 40K mail-in ballot requests

Posted by communications on May 27, 2020 at 11:35 AM Comments comments (0)

 

Eight of York County's 277 furloughed employees have returned full time to help the Department of Elections and Voter Registration process the deluge of mail-in ballot applications for the June 2 primary.

 

More than 14% of registered voters in York County had requested mail-in ballots as of Tuesday, the statewide deadline to apply, according to the Pennsylvania Department of State.

https://www.yorkdispatch.com/story/news/2020/05/26/furloughed-york-county-workers-help-40-k-mail-ballot-requests/5258482002/" target="_blank">To read the full York Dispatch story, click here.

In this Together - Rich Sterner for PA Senate

Posted by communications on May 27, 2020 at 11:30 AM Comments comments (0)

May 25, 2020

Editor, Gettysburg Times,

Why are we here today? Is it to sow the seeds of contention and division? Is it to name call and point fingers? What is our purpose?

Let me share what I think our purpose needs to be. We say, “We are in this together.” That is easy to say and it is certainly correct but it doesn’t solve the problems we face nor does it give us direction or resolve. We need to use reason over passion. We need to look at the furthest point down the road.

In a crisis, we must prioritize and triage the difficulties we face. Obviously, healthcare is of primary concern. It’s not about the water that has passed under the bridge, but rather about correcting issues; fixing what is broken, and providing adequate equipment and medical supplies. It’s not about shouting at each other and name-calling. In fact, we should be shouting towards Washington, at Republicans and Democrats alike, to get the necessary things needed to prevent the spread of this awful pandemic.

No matter when Pennsylvania or the counties of Pennsylvania open up ... and they will open up ... safety and security will still be on the minds of consumers, even if their hair is too long or the dog’s nails need clipping. We need to look into how the economy is going to be jigsawed back together.

Realize this, that the only governmental body that can operate at a deficit is the federal government. I am not advocating that deficit spending is a good thing, but in lieu of taxing us to death, which would further destabilize the economy, deficit spending at this point would be the lesser of evils. Just like the Cares Act recently enacted from Washington, more will be needed, which is what the House of Representatives just passed and has sent on to the Senate. But here is a clue! Don’t follow this legislation from a political point of view. Instead, follow the money!

In the meantime, we need to count on each other. We need to be able to say, “I got your back!” Take the necessary steps to do your part in protecting our communities. “You can count on me.” Let’s look at each other in the eye and say “You can count on me!”

Rich Sterner, Candidate for PA Senate District 33

OPINION York doc: Don't listen to Dr. Pandelidis, or even to me, listen to pandemic experts (opinion)

Posted by communications on May 22, 2020 at 2:35 PM Comments comments (0)

Reading Dr. Steven Pandelidis’ opinion piece on the pandemic makes me feel obliged to respond and show there are other physicians in York who do not agree with him. I am one.

 

Where to start? First, before I retired from family practice, Steve and I were colleagues in the York medical community. He cared skillfully and compassionately for a number of my patients. Much appreciated.

 

However, neither of us was trained in the specialties of Virology, Epidemiology or Infectious Diseases. In this brave new Covid world, it is unwise and even dangerous for us riverboat pilots to pretend to be substitutes for those specialty pilots who are the only experts trained to deal with pandemics and carry us through. Full stop.

https://www.ydr.com/story/opinion/2020/05/22/york-doc-dont-list-to-dr-pandelidis-or-even-to-me-listen-to-pandemic-experts-opinion/5242920002/" target="_blank">Click to continue to read


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