Acting Sec. of State Skirts Senate Hearing: The ongoing conflict between the Senate GOP’s Committee on Election Integrity and Reform and the Wolf administration continued last week when Acting Sec. of State Veronica Degraffenreid failed to appear at a hearing where she was scheduled to testify on a proposed election bill. Last Tuesday’s hearing was intended to focus on Senate Bill 878, which would implement changes related to mail-in voting and the DOS’s authority to issue election guidance to counties. A spokeswoman for the Department of State told the Associated Press that the office provided written comments and offered to respond to any written questions from the committee. This incident follows Gov. Tom Wolf’s decision last month to withdraw Degraffenreid’s nomination. Sen. David Argall, R-Schuylkill, the chairman of the Senate State Government Committee, said Tuesday he couldn’t “understand the unwillingness” of Degraffenreid to testify before his committee.
Barletta Out in Front City & State PA shared the results of a new poll last week showing former Cong. Lou Barletta with an early lead among the crowded field of Republican candidates for governor. However, the key word is “early,” as most Republican voters surveyed by Susquehanna Polling & Research admitted they remain undecided about who they’ll vote for in the primary election next May.