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Your guide to the race for state attorney general

Plus, Shapiro's energy plan headwinds.

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A daily newsletter by The logo of Spotlight PA, an independent, nonpartisan newsroom producing investigative journalism for Pennsylvania.
Your Postmaster: Colin Deppen

Tuesday, March 19, 2024
Today: AG guide, energy plan proselytizing, same-day registration, mass revocations, and Pittsburgh's descent into March Madness.
Five Democrats and two Republicans are running for their party’s nomination to be Pennsylvania's next attorney general, or top cop.

It's a position that represents the interests of the state and the public, and defends Pennsylvania laws in court. The office also defended the results of the 2020 presidential election here against attempts to void them.

While the state GOP endorsed one of the candidates, York County District Attorney Dave Sunday, the Democratic Party hasn't.

With the April 23 primary fast approaching, Spotlight PA has a guide to the names on the ballots and the stakes of this high-profile contest.  

Read the full report: Pa. election 2024: A complete guide to the primary candidates for state attorney general.

“Can’t call it a mistake. Because the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s judicial system had at least five separate times to correct this specific situation, and chose not to act in the interest of justice."

—C.J. Rice, who served 12 years in prison on attempted murder charges he was recently exonerated from; CNN's Jake Tapper wrote about his connection to the case and celebrated news of Rice's release
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Sunset in Elizabethtown, via John H. Send us your photos by email, use #PAGems on Instagram, or tag us @spotlightpennsylvania.
Bright sunset seen through evergreen trees.
Today's top news story in Pennsylvania.ROCKY START: Democratic Gov. Josh Shapiro's new climate change plan will require support from Republicans in the state Senate to become a reality. It's off to a rocky start. PennLive (paywall) reports the governor's carbon-pricing scheme is taking most of the heat, while last year's school voucher dustup looms over related dealmaking.

Today's second top news story in Pennsylvania.VOTING RULES: Pennsylvania House Speaker Joanna McClinton (D., Philadelphia) is pushing for same-day voter registration at the polls and two weeks of early, in-person voting. It's a narrower policy prescription than seen last session, and it doesn't include a sought-after pre-canvassing provision. But McClinton said compromise is key. 
Today's third top news story in Pennsylvania.VOTER PURGE: A group of Republican activists has filed more than 16,000 challenges against voter registrations in Allegheny County since the 2022 election, PublicSource and WESA report, and it has plans to file another 10,000 by year’s end. Some challenged registrations were still valid. Officials from both parties call the effort misguided.

Today's fourth top news story in Pennsylvania.PA-12 ENDORSEMENT: A Democratic committee in Pittsburgh's Squirrel Hill neighborhood has endorsed Bhavini Patel in her primary bid to unseat U.S. Rep. Summer Lee (D., Pa.). WESA calls it "a potential sign that Lee's criticisms of Israel may be costing her support in one of the state's highest-profile Jewish communities." 

Today's fifth top news story in Pennsylvania.SETTLEMENT REACHED: A Republican lawsuit against five proposed mail-ballot dropoff locations in Allegheny County has been dropped four days after it was filed. TribLIVE reports the proposal is now on the county's Board of Elections agenda, and both sides have agreed such plans require approval from the board going forward.
DINING RULES: More than 900 businesses statewide will have to close their outdoor dining and seating areas this year if lawmakers don't extend or make permanent an expiring pandemic-era policy, per LNP (paywall).

AGING PLAN: Tomorrow is the last day to submit your input on Pennsylvania's 10-year master aging plan, which will guide policy creation around the needs of a rapidly growing senior population, per WESA.

RARE COPY: A "rare and priceless copy" of the Declaration of Independence is going on display in Lebanon County. It's one of two known copies in existence, WHTM reports. The other lives in Philadelphia.

SHUTTING DOWN: A Christian ministry's $60 million museum in Philadelphia is shutting down less than three years after opening. The Inquirer (paywall) says the group was "besieged with challenges."

MAD CITY: Pittsburgh is again hosting portions of the NCAA March Madness men’s basketball tourney. TribLIVE explains how the city is preparing for the Big Dance, which features a hometown team this year.
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Yesterday's answer: Equivalence

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