#PA13: Margolies Violates FEC Guidelines – Leach Campaign Files Legal Complaint

Keystone Politics - Wed, 2014-04-23 18:32
Leach campaign staffers have confirmed to Keystone Politics that they have filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission against Marjorie Margolies, for using over $71,427 in General...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

#PAGov: Obamacare Frenemy Allyson Schwartz Takes a Page From Karl Rove’s Playbook

Keystone Politics - Wed, 2014-04-23 16:10
Nobody from the Allyson Schwartz campaign wanted to give us a password for their Obamacare call with reporters today, obviously, probably because they don’t want to answer our questions about...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

CHART: Marjorie Margolies’ Burn Rate From Hell

Keystone Politics - Wed, 2014-04-23 15:31
Colleen’s got you covered on the details, but the visual is pretty striking.
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

#PA13: Will fundraising woes be Margolies’ downfall?

Keystone Politics - Wed, 2014-04-23 14:37
From the very beginning, Marjorie Margolies’ political comeback has been what most political pundits and writers have referred to as “non-traditional”. In fact, most would not have...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

The Daily Salvo for April 22, 2014 - "David and Goliath"

The Daily Salvo - Wed, 2014-04-23 11:01
The Daily Salvo for April 22, 2014 - "David and Goliath"
Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidate Bob Guzzardi's recent court victory over the GOP establishment reminds us of the movie "Hoosiers." From: The Daily Salvo Views: 0 0 ratings Time: 01:01 More in News & Politics

The Daily Salvo for April 21, 2014 - "The Becket Fund"

The Daily Salvo - Wed, 2014-04-23 10:44
The Daily Salvo for April 21, 2014 - "The Becket Fund"
The Becket Fund is dedicated to helping others by advancing and protecting religious freedom, but right now they need your help. From: The Daily Salvo Views: 0 0 ratings Time: 01:01 More in News & Politics

Common Core Rick Santorum versus Tom Corbett

The Liberty Blog - Wed, 2014-04-23 09:55

Tom Corbett’s Department of Education is implementing Common Core, a very expensive program nationalizing education.

While I am no fan of the opportunistic, self-absorbed Rick Santorum, I can’t say he is stupid. When he is right, I have to say he is right. Here Rick Santorum articulates, cogently and clearly, what is wrong with Common Core. READ MORE Townhall 21 April 2014 

  Statist education is inconsistent with education for a free people. Nationalizing education eliminates diversity of ideas and perspectives. E Pluribus Unum.



Categories: Pennsylvania

#NN14: Do you want Keystone Politics at Netroots Nation? VOTE NOW.

Keystone Politics - Wed, 2014-04-23 09:46
Click HERE to send me, Colleen Kennedy, to Detroit, Michigan in July! We’ll be sure to live blog as many events, seminars, and keynote speakers as possible, so that it will be like you’re...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

#HD164: Are you there, Margo? It’s me, Colleen. (Part II)

Keystone Politics - Wed, 2014-04-23 09:03
Are you there, Margo? It’s me, Colleen. I’ve noticed pay equity has become part of your teachings, at campaign stops, on canvassing expeditions through neighborhoods, and at Democratic...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

The Daily Numbers for Wednsday, April 23

Heron's Nest - Wed, 2014-04-23 08:57
The Daily Numbers: 4-1 loss by the Flyers in a poor showing at the Wells Fargo Center against the Rangers.

2-1 series lead now for the New Yorkers. If they want to advance, the Flyers now face the task of having to win another game in New York.

1,000 dollars, value of a rifle scope what apparently was missing from the evidence room of the Chester Police Department, and subject of search warrants issued yesterday.

37, age of Conroy Williams, who has been charged with running down man in Collingdale. He’s still at large.

18, age of teen bicyclist who was struck and critically injured in Ridley Park. Police are seeking the driver of a pickup truck.

80,000 barrels of crude oil that is set to start arriving in Eddystone, and the focus of safety sessions in the borough.

250 people who showed up at a meeting in West Goshen last night to ask questions and complain about a pumping station that Sunoco Logistics needs to get Marcellus Shale materials to the former Sunoco refinery in Marcus Hook. They don’t much care for the idea.

100,000 dollars in scholarships doled out to Delco high schoolers by the Taylor Foundation.

0 liquor licenses in Swarthmore. That could change under a plan by Swarthmore College, which is being opposed by some in the borough.

40 room inn and bar at center of legal dispute pitting the school against some residents.

15 applications that have been received by the state from taverns for small games of chance. State officials initially thought they’d get 2,000.

3 people shot during funeral for shooting victim in Trenton yesterday.

700 homes at the Jersey shore that will be targeted for post-Sandy buyouts.

15 cities still in the running to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention, including Philly.

65 point spike in stock market yesterday.

30 percent boost in profits for Comcast.

3 straight wins for the Phillies.

6 consecutive saves for Jonathan Papelbon, preserving 3-2 win for the Phils

22 errors committed by the Dodgers in 21 games. An dropped ball in the outfield led to the Phils’ winning run in the 10th inning.

Call me a Phanatic: A look at the ups and downs of being a Philadelphia sports fan.

So much for home-ice advantage. Flyers now must win another game in NYC to win this series.

I Don’t Get It: Gunshots broke out yesterday at a funeral in Trenton. The funeral was for a teen who was shot and killed last week.

Today’s Upper: Kudos to those who plan to take a stand against violence in Chester at a rally tonight.

Quote Box: “The Haverford School obviously does not tolerate such activities and is cooperating with authorities.”

- Headmaster John Nagl, in wake of drug probe centering on two graduates.
Categories: Pennsylvania

#HD164: Are you there, Margo? It’s me, Colleen (Part I)

Keystone Politics - Wed, 2014-04-23 08:46
Hi. Over here. In the 164th District. I’ve been here this whole entire time. I’m so lost and confused! Can you hear me? As our thousands of readers know, the highly contested race in the...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

Chester is back in the headlines again

Heron's Nest - Wed, 2014-04-23 07:46
It's going to be a big news day in Chester again today.

First, there will be the fallout from yesterday's raid on the Chester Police Department. Officers from the Special Prosecution Unit of the county CID showed up at police HQ on Seventh Street armed with search warrants.

According to our Rose Quinn, the probe centers on a missing scope from a rifle that was part of a federal ATF investigation. CID officers were seen carrying items out of police headquarters.

It's not the first time there have been issues in the evidence room. We've written about it before.Chester Mayor John Linder is expected to speak about the issue at tonight's city council meeting.

The investigation by the D.A.'s office is believed to have been sparked by a complaint from an officer. One of the issues the department is dealing with is divided loyalties. Commissioner Joe Bail was brought in under Linder. He was out of town yesterday and unavailable to comment.

Linder and D.A. Jack Whelan both confirmed the probe and search warrants, but declined to divulge any other information. But the missing scope and how it came to be missing - and quickly returned - is not the only issue in the city. Tonight a group of ministers is planning a rally before the City Council meeting to protest the continuing violence in the city, as well as an unsolved murder.

They are inviting the city to come together to show their resolve and take a stand against violence at 7 p.m. at the City Council Room in City Hall.

I wrote last week about the growing exasperation of many city residents about what they now say is becoming a daily part of life in Chester - routine random gunfire.

Yesterday I had a call from a person very active in the city who said he believes both Mayor Linder and Commissioner Bail have been reluctant to bring in outside help, something that county officials said they would consider. We'll see if that comes up tonight.

For his part, when he was a guest with me two weeks ago on our 'Live From the Newsroom'show, Linder did not hesitage when I asked him flat-out, "Is Chester safe?"

"Yes," he quickly responded.

He might have a more difficult time selling that to city residents.
Categories: Pennsylvania

About that front page

Heron's Nest - Wed, 2014-04-23 07:25
I hope all those who insist that this newspaper never misses an opportunity to portray certain people from certain areas of the county in a negative light noticed yesterday's front page.

It featured a major drug bust.

Not in Chester. Or Collingdale. Or Darby. Or Marcus Hook.

This one happened on the Main Line.

And it involved young people from some of the best schools in the region. The two ringleaders were graduates of the prestigious Haverford School, where they starred on the lacrosse team.

Some of their "employees," according to police, were pushing pot and other stuff in Radnor, Conestoga, Lower Merion and Harriton high schools.

They also had folks in local colleges, including Lafayette, Haverford and Gettysburg.

As we often do when we have an arrest that features a large group of people, we displayed their faces on our front page. Usually this is met with complaints that we are picking on minorities and disadvantaged people.

Inevitably someone will call me and complain that we always portray minorities in this fashion, but when it involves a non-minority, it goes not get the same treatment.

They say we routinely try to 'hide' those stories inside the paper.

I offer yesterday's front page as Exhibit A in my argument against that accusation.

Funny, I didn't receive one call about it yesterday.
Categories: Pennsylvania

'Live From the Newsroom' talks student financial literacy

Heron's Nest - Wed, 2014-04-23 07:10
We're taking our live-stream Internet broadcast, 'Live From the Newsroom,' back on the road tonight when we tackle the issue of financial literacy among young people with the good folks at the Franklin Mint Federal Credit Union.

Financial literacy among young people is becoming a big issue.

The Franklin Mint Federal Credit Union has been pushing this issue for years, starting with the opening of several branches inside high schools, and staffed by students.

They also use the famous Berenstain Bears to spread the message of financial literacy among young people.

Tonight I will be joined by Rick Durante and Mike Magnavita, from the credit union, to talk about their work, and I'll also have two very special guests.

Lexi Galantino carries the No. 1 ranking in her class at Springfield High School. She also just happens to be an intern at the Franklin Mint Federal Credit Union's branch inside Springfield High as well as co-chairing the Franklin Mint Federal Credit Union's Youth Advisory Board. Lexi is this year's scholarship winner. She's headed to Tufts Univesity next year.

Also with is will be Marple Newtown School District Superintendent Dr. Merle Horowitz. She's been named the credit union's 2014 Financial Literacy Advocate, given to a leader in education each year who demonstrates strong support for financial literacy.

We'll also use the show to preview next week's big Partners in Learning Celebration dinner, featuring the awards for the All-Delco Hi-Q team as well as the Delaware County Excellence in Teaching Awards.

Each year we are honored to feature the All-Delco Hi-Q team. Much as we do for each high school sport, each year we name an All-Delco team tied to the nation's oldest academic quiz competition. One team member is selected from each competing school.

Make sure you look for complete write-ups on the All-Delco Hi-Q team this Sunday in the Daily Times. On Monday we will do likewise with this year's winners of the Excellence in Teaching Awards.

Make sure you tune in to tonight at 7 for a very special 'Live From the Newsroom' on financial literacy among young people.
Categories: Pennsylvania

Flyers throw away home-ice advantage

Heron's Nest - Wed, 2014-04-23 06:32
So much for home-ice advantage.

It did not take the Flyers long to relinquish what they had worked so hard to achieve. After wresting the advantage away from the New York Rangers Sunday in the Big Apple, the orange and black failed to show up last night at the Wells Fargo Center, falling 4-1 in a troubling, listless effort.

Ray Emery was not sharp. He had lots of company. The Flyers fell behind quickly 2-0 in the first period and never recovered.

Steve Mason, still suffering from the ever-mysterious "upper body injury" apparently was healthy enough to be on the bench as Emery's backup. He actually saw some mop-up duty late in the third period after the Rangers went up 4-1.

All of that is the bad news. The worse news is that Flyers fans will have an extra day to wallow in the bad vibe. No doubt thanks to the vagaries of TV, Game 3 is not being played in South Philly until Friday night.

No word yet on who will be in goal. Look for Mason to get that start.

Regardless, the Flyers now will have to win another game in New York. Before winning on Sunday, they had dropped eight straight there.

Rob Parent has the details on the Flyers' shaky effort.

And columnist Jack McCaffery notes coach Craig Berube is in a familiar pickle for a Flyers coach, a goaltending dilemma.

On the bright side, how 'bout dem Phillies. They won their 3rd straight last night to even their record at 10-10. And tonight they get Cole Hamels back as he takes the hill in a battle with Dodgers ace Zack Greinke.
Categories: Pennsylvania

We Still Need Diversity in Higher Education—Not Because It’s Right, But Because the Economy Demands It

Keystone Politics - Tue, 2014-04-22 18:02
Today, the Supreme Court upheld an amendment to Michigan’s constitution that bans affirmative action in admissions to public universities. Now that states can decide for themselves whether to ban the...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

#PAGov: Obamacare Frenemy Allyson Schwartz Running on Obamacare Now

Keystone Politics - Tue, 2014-04-22 16:15
(Cross-posted from Primary Colors) We like that Allyson Schwartz isn’t backing down from Obamacare just because of the rock roll-out like some other Democrats are, but many of the national and...
Categories: Pennsylvania, Politics

pileated woodpecker…

Chester County Ramblings - Tue, 2014-04-22 11:05

Here is the pileated woodpecker that has taken up residence in the woods.  I know this is blurry, but he goes way high up in the trees!


Categories: Pennsylvania

main line problems

Chester County Ramblings - Tue, 2014-04-22 10:42

Sometimes it is just so nice to be like a bird flying above the trees and fields.  You can watch and observe, and stay above the fray.

I called the Main Line home for most of my life.  It was a fun place to grow up, and well the Main Line of the past is certainly not the Main Line of today.  Ironically, a lot of people I grew up with and enjoyed as people now call Chester County home.

But yesterday was like fun x 2 = Main Line Problems.

And it makes me ever so grateful to not be there any longer.

First up let’s visit Radnor Township.  Radnor almost became a true victim of back room Delco politics until former Township Manager Dave Bashore got his and Radnor’s dirty laundry aired in public.  A lot of this public airing was because of a few brave individuals including a woman I respect a great deal named Christina Perrone.

When Bashore got fired as Radnor’s Township Manager a lot of things swirled into motion. Commissioners who were problematic ran away, Radnor’s solicitor at the time evaporated (and eventually resurfaced as innkeeper/owner of a bed and breakfast in the New York finger lakes district), a few supervisory and managerial types from the Bashore regime ended up as employees in some Chester County municipalities, and a few even ended up at other Chester County businesses.  It was like a political bubble burst and they scattered like raindrops. (Or ants leaving the picnic, whichever you prefer.)

However, not all of the politicians of this era disappeared.  There is one, who has been entrenched for easily 30 years.  He is like a cat with nine lives and then some.  His name is Bill Spingler, and he is the subject of the first ethics hearing in years on the Main Line this week in Radnor.

One would think Spingler would just retire. But people in Radnor say he is waiting for pet projects to go through.  You might think his ethics hearing had to do with is 2013 campaign shenanigans  ( see what got him into hot water here, here, here – all copied by Radnor employees on the taxpayer clock.)

Or maybe it would be the eternal question of where this guy really lives? After all the deeds don’t lie and this guy has purchased a new pad in Tredyffrin at Paoli Pointe, right? So that is a neat trick if he can be a Radnor commissioner by day and commute home whenever to Chester County, right?

But no, apparently it is his “work” at Villanova basketball games and something about pay to play at little league games.  And once again, it is brave Christina Perrone who has stepped forward to do the right thing. Truly, you can’t make this stuff up:

Ethics complaint against Radnor Commissioner Spingler amended again; Hearing set for Thursday

By Linda Stein Main Line Media News Published: Monday, April 21, 2014

An ethics complaint filed against Radnor Township Commissioner John Spingler over his work at Villanova’s home basketball games has been amended again prior to a hearing set for April 24.

In the previously amended complaint Radnor resident Christina Perrone alleged that Spingler’s ushering work at the games for Event One constitutes a violation of the township’s code of ethics. In several interviews with Main Line Suburban Life, Spingler contended that since he’s donated his earnings to the Radnor-Wayne Little League, his work over several decades at the games is not a conflict of interest.

This issue arises in the context of Spingler casting one of the deciding votes on March 31 to approve the Comprehensive Integrated College Development (CICD) zoning, which will permit Villanova University to build ….That ordinance also affects Cabrini College and Eastern University.

Perrone obtained copies of a spreadsheet from the little league that shows that Spingler received various payments from that organization. When asked about those checks, Spingler said that he was required to bring 13 volunteers to the games and when he could not find that many who would work for free, he was forced to pay people to usher…..

“These admissions by Commissioner Spingler cannot be construed as anything other than business transactions,” Perrone wrote in her amended complaint. These “statements demonstrate that Commissioner Spingler is even more conflicted on Villanova University issues, including the CICD, than previously believed, due to the applicability of Radnor Code Section 39-5[A].”

That section states: “No elected or appointed official of the township…shall solicit or accept directly or indirectly any gift, favor, service, commission or other consideration that might reasonably tend to influence that official or employee in the discharge of the duties of office.”…



Of course where this gets even more interesting is now people have learned that the current township solicitor, John Rice, will be representing this politician? How is it the township solicitor is working for other than the good of the residents of Radnor? Does the solicitor in fact not work for the people, but just for the politicians? Doesn’t Commissioner Spingler know any more lawyers? (Asking a quasi- redundant question.)

And oh yes, this open meeting scheduled for April 24th at 6 pm (this Thursday) is now possibly going to be held as a secret, non-public meeting?  I know the lawyer representing Christina Perrone.  His name is Dan Sherry and he is very bright.

If this old politician had any style left he would simply resign and retire. but then again if the ethics charges stick, it could keep him from then retiring and moving onto Chester County politics, right? But the thing is this: is the whole system in Radnor rigged in a nice Main Line way?

And now for the news that really makes me glad I am off the Main Line: two graduates of The Haverford School for boys have been arrested for masterminding a drug ring that can only be described as “Breaking Bad” meets “Weeds”.  One guy was living on Barrett Avenue in Haverford. That is a lovely street with lots of children.  He is like 25 or 26.  The other ringleader is just 18 years old and lives with his parents in Villanova.  How do you put your family at risk like that?

These guys had a network and had minions working for them at Haverford School, Haverford College, Harriton High School, Lower Merion High School, Conestoga High School, Radnor High School, Lafayette College and I think even Gettysburg.

It even made the national network news and Wall Street Journal this morning:

Wall Street Journal: US News: Eleven Charged in Drug Ring on Philadelphia’s Main Line

April 21, 2014 7:29 p.m. ET

Prosecutors said Monday they had broken up a marijuana and cocaine trafficking ring allegedly run by two graduates of a suburban Philadelphia prep school and centered on the affluent area known as the Main Line.

Authorities announced charges against nine adults and two juveniles as part of an investigation that resulted in the seizure of drugs and three guns.

The two alleged leaders referred to the distribution ring as the “Main Line take over project,” according to court records, which quoted text messages in which they discussed plans to dominate marijuana sales at schools in the Philadelphia suburbs.

“They tried to infiltrate our schools, not for educational purposes, but to make money and to drag others into the downward spiral that their lives had become,” Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Ferman said in a statement. The seizure of guns and a variety of drugs showed that the operation posed a “significant danger” to the community, she said.

The two alleged leaders—25-year-old Neil Scott of Haverford, Pa., and 18-year-old Timothy Brooks of Villanova—are graduates of the private Haverford School, where both played lacrosse, according to an affidavit of probable cause. This year’s upper school tuition is $34,800.

“We’re appalled and shocked and horrified,” said Haverford School Headmaster John Nagl, adding that the all-boys school was “determined to learn from this and build a better school and a better community that understands the risks to boys and helps them make better choices.”



I have to feel sorry for the headmaster quoted above.  John Nagl is the new headmaster and these guys arrested came up through this elite private school under the former headmaster Joseph Cox.

To be honest, I have not much positive to say about the Haverford School of today.  I lived for years in one of the neighborhoods that had the misfortune to call this school a neighbor.  They treated their neighbors poorly and it was a top down approach starting with the now former headmaster.  I found him to be a huge jerk.

Throughout the years I have had many friends who graduated from Haverford School.  As did their fathers and uncles and brothers.  They weren’t this kind of graduate.  I also know people who have kids in lower school, middle school, upper school, and those who have graduated. A lot of these people basically indenture themselves so their boys can have the advantages of going to a school like that.  It’s just crazy.

These dealers are young.  They have tanked their lives, and to what end? A misplaced sense of entitlement and easy cash?  And the effect their selfish actions will have on all of their families is another sad thing to comprehend.  After all, it’s the Main Line so people might stop talking to your face about what your kid did, but the whispers will never go away.

I keep thinking how bright these young men must be and how different their lives could have been if they just worked for things legitimately. It is a sad commentary on the culture of the Main Line today.  The whole culture of misplaced sense of entitlement.

I sound like an old fart, and I don’t mean to.  This just is blowing the mind of everyone I know who not only grew up on the Main Line but who went to one of these schools. Not that drugs and the Main Line have never been uttered in the same sentence.  As one friend of mine said : “Both public and private schools are involved in this. And it’s not like this situation is new, it’s been happening in these schools for decades. Choose your decade, choose your drug of choice.”

This however, is pretty big.  And it is scary. We can educate our children and try to steer them to make the right choices, yet things can go wrong, majorly wrong.

Makes me glad I am not on the Main Line any longer. These problems are everywhere, don’t misunderstand me, its just that this is the situation which will destroy lives and families.  And for what? Being able to keep up with the Main Line Jones more easily? Sad.

Main Line Media News/Pottstown Mercury: Prep school drug ring busted; 11 arrested (photos)

By Richard Ilgenfritz,
POSTED: 04/21/14, 12:45 PM EDT | UPDATED: 10 HRS AGO

Prosecutors say two former Main Line students at the Haverford School set up an elaborate drug ring in an attempt to take over the Main Line drug trade at several area schools and colleges. The schools included some of the most privileged public and private schools in the region.

Authorities announced Monday the arrests of Neil K. Scott, 25, of Barrett Avenue in Haverford and Timothy Brooks, 18, of Cedar Lane in Villanova as the main suppliers.

Daniel McGrath, 18, of Glenolden; John Rosemann, 20, of Weston, Conn.; Christian Euler, 23, of Villanova; Garrett Johnson, 18, of New York; Reid Cohen, 18, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey; Willow Lynn Ore, 22, of Philadelphia; Domenic Curcio, 29 of Philadelphia and the two juveniles have been identified as the sub-dealers.

The ring was dubbed the “Main Line take over project,” because, authorities say, the group was trying to take over the drug trade at several area schools.

Schools including Lower Merion High School, The Haverford School, Harriton High School, Conestoga High School, Radnor Township High School, Gettysburg College, Lafayette College and Haverford College have all been identified as the target schools.

So far eight adults have been taken into custody while another adult is being sought for arrest. Two juveniles, one a student at Lower Merion and the other a student at Radnor, have also been charged….Information from the Main Line Times,


Note to the Main Line of today: you reap what you so and how sad is that?  You see it’s not all grand houses, fancy cars, and designer clothes.  With affluence (or an affluent society) there should come a sense of greater good and doing the right thing.  But unfortunately, that was the Main Line of years ago, wasn’t it?



Categories: Pennsylvania