WILKES-BARRE — As the campaigns heat up in Pennsylvania, here are a few things candidates and their supporters are saying about their positions on the issues and their opponents.
PSEA is critical of Mastriano
proposed educational plan
A new analysis by the Pennsylvania State Education Association (PSEA) shows that gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano’s education plan would cut public school funding by more than $12 billion annually — resulting in the loss of nearly 119,000 jobs and more than doubling the number of teachers and students in classes. throughout the state.
“More than $12 billion in funding cuts will completely devastate Pennsylvania’s public schools,” said PSEA President Rich Askey. “Doug Mastriano’s plan is completely irresponsible, a violation of the state constitution and an insult to the 1.7 million students who attend our public schools.”
In a March 2022 radio interview with WRTA in Altoona, Mastriano said Pennsylvania should cut per-pupil school funding from an average annual level of more than $19,000 today to just $9,000 or $10,000 per pupil. a student who had not been in Pennsylvania for more than two decades. .
The PSEA estimated the impact on public schools statewide if Mastriano funded each student with $9,000 in state funding annually while eliminating all local school property taxes, as he proposed. The estimate assumes that local property taxes and federal funding will remain intact.
The PSEA analysis revealed:
Funding for public school districts, charter schools, intermediate units and vocational centers will decrease by $12.75 billion, or 33%.
School districts alone will see $11 billion in cuts.
More than 118,700 jobs will be lost in public school districts, charter schools, intermediate units and career and technical centers – a 49% drop in employment.
The student-teacher ratio in public schools will more than double.
Details of the estimated impact on Pennsylvania school districts, charter schools, career and technical centers and intermediate units can be found at www.psea.org/mastrianocuts.
“Sen. Mastriano would have turned the clock back 20 years in public education in Pennsylvania,” Askey said. “Student programs will be cut, teachers will be fired, and class sizes will skyrocket.
“This proposal would accomplish one thing: School districts would no longer have to worry about staff shortages. They would be too busy laying off faculty and support staff, expanding class sizes, eliminating sports, and cutting other programs.”
PSEA conducted this analysis in the absence of a clear explanation from Mastriano on how his funding proposal would affect public education.
“Pennsylvanians deserve to have some idea of what a proposal like this would mean for the commonwealth’s public schools,” Askey said. “Parents deserve to know how many teachers their children’s public schools will lose. These are important details that Doug Mastriano chose not to reveal.
“It is hard to even imagine how devastating these consequences will be. What would our schools look like with a fraction of teachers, school counselors, school nurses, custodians, bus drivers, and aides? What would this mean for the education and well-being of Pennsylvania students?
“How we fund public schools in Pennsylvania is one of the most important functions of state government. Doug Mastriano’s contemptuous suggestion that we can cut public school funding by so much is just the latest evidence that he is unfit to govern and simply doesn’t care how his extreme ideas will affect real Pennsylvanians and real children.”
Askey is the president of PSEA. An affiliate of the National Education Association, PSEA represents approximately 178,000 active and retired educators and school employees, teachers, postsecondary staff and health care professionals in Pennsylvania.
Shapiro to two debates
Pennsylvania GOP gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano last week sent a letter to his Democratic opponent, Attorney General Josh Shapiro, challenging him to two 90-minute debates in October to be hosted by both campaigns.
In his letter, Mastriano explained that his debate assignment is designed to give both candidates a level playing field and mitigate the bias of the mainstream media, which traditionally moderates the debates.
“Typically, Republican state candidates are trapped in debates that are effectively a two-on-one matchup in which the mainstream media moderating the debates are unpaid supporters and ideological allies of the Democratic candidates,” Mastriano said. wrote in a letter.
“I challenge you to two 90-minute debates in October, one at a place of your choosing and one at a place of my choosing,” Mastriano added. “Each debate will have two moderators … who will be allowed an equal number of questions asked of each candidate. Topics for debate can be open without restrictions.”
To learn more about Mastriano as governor and his policy plan, visit – www.doug4gov.com/plan.
Dr. Oz suggests a discussion
Fetterman five times
Ten days ago, Republican US Senate candidate Dr. Oz said he had agreed to five debates in Pennsylvania, while his Democratic opponent, John Fetterman, had agreed to none.
The Dr. Oz for Senate campaign released the following statement:
“Dr. Oz agreed to five debates. John Fetterman agreed to recuse himself from the debate.
“If John is too ill to discuss and he is concerned about not being in front of the cameras for more than 10 minutes, then he should just say so.
“We are sure that the voters will understand, and so will we.
“Otherwise, he should choose some of the many debates Dr. Oz has agreed to or explain why he won’t agree to a debate on KDKA on September 6,” Oz said. /
Fetterman’s Op-Ed appears
in the Times Leader on Monday
Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman wrote an op-ed in Wilkes-Barre’s Times-Leader on Monday outlining his agenda for Pennsylvania if elected to the Senate.
Fetterman’s announcement comes a week after the company released new ads outlining Fetterman’s plan to fight inflation, cut costs for workers and stand up to the power elite. The ad is currently airing in markets across the country, including Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and on Fox News statewide.
And posting in Wilkes-Barre, a large market often overlooked by politicians, demonstrates how Fetterman is taking his program to every corner of Pennsylvania, offering real solutions to benefit people across the Commonwealth.
Fetterman notes in the article that “these are neither democratic nor republican decisions. These are patriotic, pro-American and pro-worker decisions — and they’re just common sense. And while my opponent, Dr. Oz, was trying to get to know his new state — and, apparently, grocery stores — I was putting in the work, talking to people across the commonwealth, and coming up with a plan that would improve the lives of working Pennsylvanians.”
Fetterman’s new set of policy proposals, which outline the substance of a published op-ed titled “John’s Plan to Hold Washington Accountable,” lays out his common-sense agenda in Washington, D.C., including:
Doing more things in America
Stopping immoral price gouging
Tax cuts for workers
Reducing out-of-pocket health care costs
Prohibition of Congress from trading stocks
Dr. Oz is running a campaign
event at Avenue Diner
Dr. Mehmet Oz told a crowd at the Avenue Diner in Wyoming Borough on Thursday that Pennsylvania and the country are not moving in the right direction, but after the November midterm elections, when he predicts the Republican Party will control Congress, “we will raise our nation”.
Oz, the GOP candidate for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Lehigh Valley, was in town for what his staff said was his 137th campaign stop since the May primary. So far, Oz has visited 30 of the state’s 67 counties, meeting with voters and community leaders to get his message across.
In the Nov. 8 general election, Oz faces Democrat John Fetterman, who was Pennsylvania’s lieutenant governor during the Wolf administration.
Oz said the campaign traveled more than 4,000 miles, making 164 stops in 30 counties and more than 90 media interviews. He said he has enjoyed meeting with constituents, community leaders and elected officials to hear their concerns as he gathers information to take toCapitol Hill.
“It’s very important to me to meet with as many people as possible to listen to their concerns and discuss those concerns with them,” Oz said. “You can’t just make a phone call because Pennsylvania has tremendous power to change the direction of the Senate. Our country is suffering from skyrocketing gas and grocery inflation, shocking increases in violent crime, and the fear of energy shortages unless we start standing up for our communities and our economy.”
Oz said that by appearing in Pennsylvania communities and talking about tough issues, he gets a real sense of what issues voters care about.
“They told me we have to improve our energy infrastructure, fight inflation, send our kids to quality schools and keep criminals off the streets,” Oz said. “But John Fetterman does the opposite — he hides from voters and doesn’t talk to the press. John Fetterman doesn’t know the price of real work. He lived off his father’s wealth and taxpayers alone, never appearing in Pennsylvania. He believes that releasing one-third of Pennsylvania’s prison population would not make anyone less safe. Fetterman wants Washington to impose a green new deal on us and increase spending that will push gas prices and inflation even higher – that’s just crazy talk.”
Oz called Fetterman a “radical left-wing candidate,” saying he is more left-wing than Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
“The only thing Joe Biden is better at rebuilding is the Republican Party,” Oz said. “We need real, smart solutions that come from the ground up. I am doing hard work and will fight for Pennsylvania USA. The Senate.”
Turns out to be Dr. Oz fans
Dr. Oz was joined at the event by U.S. Rep. Dan Meiser, D-Dallas; State Treasurer Stacey Garrity State Sen. Lisa Baker, R-Lehman Township; Rep. Aaron Kaufer, R-Kingston; and several Republican candidates for public office and members of the Luzerne County Council.
“Dr. Today, Mehmet Oz will be touring the new 9th Congressional District,” Meiser said. “We need to hear a big message about his plans to make America stronger by strengthening Pennsylvania.”
Baker said Dr. Oz visits the Commonwealth every day to share his positive message for Pennsylvania’s future.
“He’s committed to curbing inflation, including using our natural resources to help consumers and empowering individuals and families to live better lives,” Baker said. “Dr. Oz has proven that he is willing to do the hard work necessary to earn the support of the voters of Northeast Pennsylvania and that he will advocate for our region in the United States Senate.”
Contact Bill O’Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle.