Wolf blows Legislature a kiss
In the final Corbett v. Wolf debate, the Democratic challenger sides with the Legislature on it size.
Perhaps it's pragmatism. Or pure politics. Or a personally-held belief.
Whatever it is, Democrat Tom Wolf, in the final debate with Republican Gov. Corbett Wednesday night in Pittsburgh, sided with the Legislature -- or, as it's known in some progressive circles, Pennsylvania's root of all evil.
When asked whether the nation's largest full-time Legislature should be reduced in size, Democrat Wolf said no.
I'd note, as I have for years, Pennsylvania's 253-member body is one of just three full-time legislatures, along with California and New York, operating at high cost with a huge staff funded by taxpayers, in our case to the tune of nearly $300 million a-year.
I'd also note our Legislature has a well-earned reputation for corruption and ineptitude.
Now perhaps Mr. Wolf has no appetite for the fight that would require lawmakers to reduce their own head count by voting in two successive sessions to get the issue on a statewide ballot to change the constitution (no easy task, I'll grant).
Or maybe since Wolf leads Corbett by double-digits he's thinking if he becomes governor he needs to work with this crowd so why not get things off to a good start by signaling long-term job security. (Incumbents, as you know, almost never lose.)
What he said is a larger legislature is better for Democracy. Okay, maybe he believes that.
Corbett, on the other hand, had no qualms about going after the folks who did little for him (even though both House and Senate are run by his own party). He said he supports cutting the size AND making the body part-time, as is the case in many other states.
This could simply be a Democrat favoring larger government and a Republican favoring less government.
If so, we have an instance in which Wolf is not the unconventional politician that he claims to be.