Dems Yudichak, Dinniman, and Ferlo Voted for Climate Denier Chris Abruzzo

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Good catch from Sean Kitchen:

Screen shot 2013-12-09 at 12.52.34 PM

State Senator Daylin Leach, candidate for the 13th Congressional District, was the only Democrat to vote against an Environmental Protection nominee who thinks the biggest environmental issue is NBD.

Senators like Rob Teplitz think that Tom Corbett should get unanimous votes on even controversial nominees, because something something tradition:

I spoke with State Senator Rob Teplitz. He says that he takes a generally deferential view on gubernatorial nominees. I told him I appreciate that, especially given the gridlock on nominees we currently see at the Federal level.

He clarified that it is tradition, since Acting Secretary Abruzzo is a constituent, and since Sen Teplitz sees no ethical issues with the Governor’s nominee, that he did present and introduce him.

Teplitz did say he intends to vote to seat Abruzzo, although he is not the ideal nominee he would pick. Teplitz said he feels Abruzzo meets “minimal standards” for that office. Teplitz said that, in context with the entire exchange, Abruzzo did not come across as a climate denier to Teplitz.

This is just bad politics. Democrats have a narrow minority in the Senate. They want voters to give them control of the Senate next November. And to do that, they need to create moments of contrast between the Democratic Party’s values and the Republican Party’s values.

If Democrats staged a party-line vote against Abruzzo, they wouldn’t actually stop Corbett from getting his nominee, but they would send a strong message to voters about what the Democratic Party stands for. The state party is already trying to turn Abruzzo into an issue and use the controversy to raise money, but as Sean points out, Senators like Teplitz are stepping all over the message. Until the party leadership is going to start taking some responsibility for keeping everyone on message, donors are better off giving directly to individual candidates like Daylin Leach than giving money to the state party.

This entry was posted in Miscellany.

11 Responses to Dems Yudichak, Dinniman, and Ferlo Voted for Climate Denier Chris Abruzzo

  1. stcif01 says:

    Teplitz attributes these kind of votes to a gentleman’s agreement. What is the real cause Dems vote this way? With Teplitiz I imagine a need for chips to cash at the gov’s office. Maybe PA legislature stuck in a committee era? Lack of strong state party?

    • Jon Geeting says:

      I don’t know if nominations have ever really been politicized in PA, but I’ve only been paying close attention for a few years now. Only that semen guy got drummed out.

      • Jon Geeting says:

        Also Avila, the health inspector dude who bought everybody the fancy uniforms and was a jerk to that waitress about his eggs not being cooked right.

    • Lack of strong state party?

      That’s certainly part of it. Especially in a party that includes Matt Cartwright and retrogrades like Mark Critz.

  2. The petition I started on Wednesday night now has over 6500 signatures and they keep coming! Today, hundreds of Pennsylvanians contacted their senators to say NO to Abruzzo. This issue has really struck a nerve. That the PA Dems are raising money when their own senators are supporting this nominee is unacceptable. http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/pa-senate-dont-put-a-1

  3. JT says:

    Interesting positions. Most advocate doing at the state level exactly what liberals object to and claim the Conservatives are doing at the Federal level. A bit of hypocrisy it seems.

    • Jon Geeting says:

      Not on this blog! I’ve only ever objected to the Senate’s 60-vote supermajority requirements for getting nominees through. There are no supermajority requirements in state government, just a simple majority. Dems don’t have majorities in either chamber, so it’s just a message vote.

  4. Matt Thomas says:

    Jon,
    Be advised that Democratic State Senator Andy Dinniman (19th District) voted against the Abruzzo nomination. One hopes that you will take care to correct the tally by now listing Dinniman as a “NO” vote as prominently as was the original misinformation. See link to Dinniman site:
    http://www.senatordinniman.com/enews/13_12_12_DEP.htm

  5. Pingback: Rob "Off Message" Teplitz Will Lead PA Senate Dems to Victory in 2014 - Keystone Politics

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