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Pa. Gov. Tom Corbett addresses the Republicans gathered at the Harrisburg Hilton ballroom Tuesday night after President Obama was re-elected. At right is Rob Gleason, Chairman, Pa. state Republican Party.      //////&xC5;&xC5;&xC5;\              HARRISBURG       DONNA FISHER/THE MORNING CALL          Pic made TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 6, 2012
This isn't the big PA-Gov diary I have been talking about writing but I wanted to shed some light on this.  In case you don't remember, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett (R) & State Senate Leader Dominic Pileggi (R) proposed legislation back in 2011 that would've rigged the Presidential election in attempt to hand Pennsylvania over to Republican Nominee Mitt Romney (R. MA):

Gov. Tom Corbett and state Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi are proposing that the state divide up its Electoral College votes according to which candidates carried each Congressional district, plus two votes for the statewide winner. The system is used by Maine — which, despite the system, has never actually split its four electoral votes — and by Nebraska, which gave one of its five votes to Barack Obama in 2008. [...]

Had this proposed system been in place in 2008, when Obama won the state by a ten-point margin, he in fact would have only taken 11 out of the state’s 21 electoral votes at the time — due to a combination of past Republican-led redistricting efforts to maximize their district strength, and Obama’s votes being especially concentrated within urban areas. - 9/14/11

The plan was so unpopular that none of the PA congressional Republicans wanted to sign it.  But that didn't stop Pileggi from introducing new legislation that would still rig elections in PA:
Pileggi's new proposal is, at its core, similar to the one he and Gov. Corbett championed last fall, in that it would do away with Pennsylvania's winner-take-all system of awarding electoral votes.

This time, Pileggi wants to have electoral votes awarded "proportionately," based on the popular vote.

"The major goal remains the same - to more closely align our electoral vote with our popular vote," said Pileggi spokesman Erik Arneson, adding that the senator plans to formally introduce the bill early next year.

Pileggi's new plan would award two votes to the winner of the popular vote statewide and then divide the remaining 18 based on the percentage of the popular vote each presidential candidate received. - Philadelphia Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau, 12/4/12

It's bad enough PA Republicans have grossly gerrymander the state.  Democratic candidates for congress in Pennsylvania received more votes than their Republicans opponents yet Republicans still won.  Well State Democratic Party Chairman, Jim Burn, has had enough and needs our help to fight back against the Corbett/Pileggi agenda to steal the next election for the GOP:
FILE - In this May 13, 2010 file photo, Allegheny County Democratic Chairman Jim Burn is seen in Pittsburgh. Burn and Montgomery County Democratic party Marcel Groen are both contending to replace T.J. Rooney who told The Associated Press on Tuesday, June 8, 2010, he will step down as chairman of the state Democratic Party later this month. (AP Photo/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Pam Panchak, File) MAGS OUT; NO SALES; MONESSEN OUT; KITTANNING OUT; CONNELLSVILLE OUT; GREENSBURG OUT; TARENTUM OUT; NORTH HILLS NEWS RECORD OUT; BUTLER OUT
Friend -

They are at it again.

Harrisburg Republicans - led by Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi - are once again trying to rig the Electoral College to benefit Republicans by splitting Pennsylvania's electoral votes.

You might remember that Governor Corbett and Pileggi tried to do it in 2011 and now Pileggi is trying to change the law again.  

Pileggi said his proposal would "more accurately reflect the will of the voters in our state."  

Nothing could be farther from the truth.  

It is nothing more than a partisan power grab aimed at helping Republican candidates win the Presidency. If Pileggi had his way, Barack Obama would have only won 12 of the 20 electoral votes in Pennsylvania.

The new attempt is part of a national GOP push to change the way electoral votes are awarded in blue states.

Will you sign our petition calling on Republicans to stop this partisan attempt to change the rules just to help Republicans win elections?

Republicans are spending more time trying to help Republican politicians than the people of Pennsylvania.

We beat the proposal in 2011 and, together, we will again in 2013.

-Jim Burn

Please sign the petition, especially if you are a Pennsylvania resident:

It's bad enough the State GOP tried to disenfranchise voters with the voter ID laws but they won't stop until they can completely rig the electoral process in their favor.  Corbett knows that he is very vulnerable for 2014.  From cuts to education to privatizing the lottery to the Penn State scandal and gas drilling fees, there are a lot of reasons for people not to like Corbett.  Plus Corbett might be getting a legitimate challenger in Montgomery County Republican Bruce Castor.  So not only does Corbett need to make sure the 2014 race goes his, he needs to win back his base and how does he plan to do that?  By trying to make himself out to be the next Rick "Right To Work For Less" Snyder (R. MI):

A little more than a month after Michigan Republicans successfully passed landmark anti-union legislation in their state, members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly are attempting to follow in their footsteps. Six Republican state representatives are each bringing their own “right-to-work” style bill to the State House floor, as part of an effort collectively known as the Open Workforce Initiative.

One of the legislators involved, Rep. Darryl Metcalfe, has reportedly introduced right-to-work bills during every legislative session of the past 14 years. ”The framers of our Constitution did not intend for our government to become an enforcer for unions,” he explains on his website. “Working men and women should have the freedom to join a union if they choose and to leave that union when it is in their best interest to do so.”

Metcalfe’s success record so far might reassure union allies that Pennsylvania is unlikely to turn into another Michigan. In fact, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett, a Republican, said as much during the Michigan right-to-work battle, telling reporters, “There is not much of a movement to do it.”

However, Corbett has also said he would sign right-to-work legislation if it came across his desk. Furthermore, though the right-to-work bill which Metcalfe proposed in 2011 predictably failed, his persistence was rewarded with a House Labor and Industry Committee hearing in July of that year. - MSNBC, 1/22/13

Emphasis mine.

Pennsylvania has a very high AFL-CIO membership so it's hard for state Republicans to get "right to work" legislation passed.  But the fact that Corbett would sign it shows he doesn't care about the middle-class and would love to bust organized labor in the Keystone State.  Let this serve as a warning:

Kelly Rutherford, David Koch - March 14, 2011 - THE SCHOOL OF AMERICAN BALLET Winter Ball 2011 Sponsored by Van Cleef and Arpels held at David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center, NYC. Photo Credit: Patrick Mcmullan/ Press/balletsipapmc.017/1103152028 (Newscom TagID: sipaphotosthree094785) [Photo via Newscom]
While it seems unlikely that Pennsylvania could go entirely right-to-work any time soon, it’s worth noting that same thing was true of Michigan only a couple of months ago. And while Pennsylvania’s union density is above the national average, it is slightly weaker than in Michigan. Meanwhile, some of the same forces which helped pave the way for right-to-work in Lansing are now mobilizing in Philadelphia: The Pennsylvania chapter of the Koch outfit Americans for Prosperity announced on its Facebook page that it “stands in solidarity with our coalition partners to move Right to Work in PA.” - MSNBC, 1/22/13
Emphasis mine.

I don't know about you but I don't want Corbett doing the Koch Brothers bidding so it's very important that we give him the boot in 2014.  PA Democrats are eager to get rid of him but are looking for their best candidate to take on Corbett.  Corbett would be the first one term Governor since the late 1960s so it's understandable why the state Democratic Party is being careful about who they pick.  Many names have been mentioned as potential contenders like Admiral and Former Congressman Joe Sestak and party favorite, Treasurer Rob McCord.  My big diary on how bad Corbett is taking time because his shit list just goes on and on.  This will be out soon and I will have diaries out too about the pros and cons of having Sestak or McCord as the nominee.  I love Sestak and if he runs, he has my support.  But this article makes a pretty compelling argument for McCord:

More to come on this race.

Originally posted to pdc on Wed Jan 23, 2013 at 12:51 PM PST.

Also republished by DKos Pennsylvania, In Support of Labor and Unions, The Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party, and Pittsburgh Area Kossacks.

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