Monday, June 13, 2005

Some shorter news bits

A number of smaller news items worthy of note this morning:
  • For those who've been trying to forget, the next SEPTA talk deadline is Wednesday. The two sides have had months now to look over proposals on the deadlocked health coverage issue, but so far "congenial meetings" aren't reporting substantive progress. Let's hope they agree on another extension, at least.

  • A Sunday Inquirer article points out a surprising split among Jewish Democrats, with many supporting Santorum because of his visible stance on Israel. This seems to be the only thing that right-wing evangelicals and any Jewish liberals have in common, but it can be a definining issue for some, and Casey appears to be courting their vote as well with planned trips to the Holy Land.

  • John Baer does a spoof of Deep Throat, using it to raise the most cynical possible motives for recent actions by Ed Rendell (among others). Both amusing and dispiriting.


Blogger Dumplingeater said...

Just a semantic point. I know you didn't mean to imply differently, but it is important to note that there are at least some local Jewish "liberals" for whom Santorum's stance on Israeli poltics is not a point of agreement. While there is actually more dissent among Israeli Jews than American Jews towards the policies of the Israeli government, there's still a significant group of American Jews who don't simply vote for the politicians who ally themseveles with Sharon's administration.

2:33 PM  
Blogger ACM said...

Good catch -- I added the word "any" above, to perhaps prevent that misread. Heck, I'm not surprised that it's not unanimous -- I'm surprised that any otherwise liberals would consider fundraising for Santorum just because of this. They even quoted a guy who said he finds some/most of Rick's other stances "distasteful" but still "considers him a loyal friend" on this. Sorry, but I can't get past broad substantive distaste in service of a single issue, foreign or domestic.

2:38 PM  
Blogger Dumplingeater said...

Agreed. As a Jew, I'm similarly...well not surprised, it's more like disgusted and incredulous. I don't know how much you've been privy to debates among American Jews on this issue, but as you can imagine, it can get very contentious.

3:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Baer piece was right on point. You heard it from him first. Santorum is being courted by the national Repubs to switch and run against Rendell. Wait and see.

12:00 PM  
Blogger Rep. Mark B. Cohen said...

John Baer's cynicism is often amusing,but it rarely leads to accurate conclusions.

On the two substantive issues he raises, he was wrong on both.

First, the Supreme Court Justices gave the Rendell Administration a mixed decision on the legalization of gambling, and then got exactly what they wanted in terms of a pay raise. It sure doesn't look like a deal was struck here.

Second, Rendell's 2002 position against raising the minimum was based on the premise that no state near Pennsylvania would raise the minimum wage first. He talked about how bad it would be for business if Pennsylvania "stood all alone" in raising the minimum wage.

With higher minimum wage increases enacted already in New York, New Jersey, and Delaware, and with the Maryland Legislature likely from the viewpoints of all sides to overrride their governor's veto in January, 2006, it is absolutely clear that Pennsylvania has plenty of company in surrounding states in believing that the current minimum wage is far too low.

Rendell's switch on this issue proves he realized that the context of Pennsylvania's decisionmaking had greatly changed from 2002, not that he is unprincipled or untrustworthy.

7:54 AM  

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