February 16, 2024

On Wednesday, a member of Congress who apparently has only a vague idea of what “national security” actually means, rang the alarm bells about a potential security threat, that being from our good pal Vlad Putin. Vladdy Daddy wants to put some nuclear-powered satellites into space, which really should alarm us all, given how adept the Russians are at safely harnessing nuclear energy.

Meanwhile, the FBI informant who was the widely celebrated and endlessly cited source of Biden family corruption has been charged after the DOJ found that he basically made the whole thing up. Did we all really believe a guy named Vladmir Smirnov was a trustworthy source? Sounds like he should be chasing a squirrel and a moose with Boris and Natasha.

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas was impeached this week, after last week’s effort failed by a single vote. It is now up to impeachment manager Marjorie Taylor Greene to convince the Senate to convict him. Grab the popcorn, babies.

Meanwhile, the U.S. House left town without considering a foreign aid package that passed the Senate overwhelmingly. They are currently scheduled to reconvene 24 hours before the government shuts down. But hey, they had lots of really important things going on at home, we’ve been told, which is the same excuse we always use when we wanna leave a bad party early.

Bucks County Democrat Jim Prokopiak has secured the victory in a special election that restores the chamber’s Democrat majority. Congratulations to him and his family! Now get to work, Jim.

Meanwhile, House Speaker Joanna McClinton has scheduled the next special election (to fill the Pike County seat of retired Joe Adams) to be held concurrently with the primaries in April. This means independent voters in that district can vote for his replacement, but not in the primary election that will be on the exact same ballot the exact same day. Because, you know, reasons.

If you’d like a list of all the other primary elections that will exclude independent voters (which is to say, all of them), here ya go.

Gov. Josh Shapiro expanded the family leave policy for state employees, while he waits for the General Assembly to take up the issue for the rest of Pennsylvania’s workers. It occurs to us that being a state worker right now is a rather good gig. You no longer need a college degree, you make more than $15/hour and now have better paid leave than most other jobs. Cushy on the tushy, one might say.

A lot of eyes will be on the debate around the regulation and taxation of skill games this year, now that the governor has decided to wade into that morass. During the debate on table games in 2009, a wise man once remarked that “you can’t tax or gamble your way to prosperity.” Guess we are about to find out.

Repairs to the House chamber have been completed and, conspiracy theories aside, the session will resume on March 18, right after St. Patrick’s Day. We know this by the sheer volume of “join me for my St. Patrick’s Day-themed fundraiser” e-mails we have received in the last month. These things multiply like fruit flies in a clogged sink.

Pennsylvania’s airports are slated to receive a billion clams in federal funds this year, according to our federal elected officials. First to be funded are approximately 70,000 new Starbucks shops in these terminals so that the wait for coffee comes in under three hours. And maybe some decent sushi, if possible.

Allegheny County developers may be in line for serious tax relief under the Innamorato administration’s plans to jump-start construction of new affordable housing and commercial corridor redevelopment. Tax cuts, huh? But we were told the new county executive was a socialist? This math doesn’t work.

Teachers are leaving Pennsylvania, and fewer teachers are being certified, a perfect storm of crap for districts across the state. Is it now not cool to be underpaid, overworked, scared of violence in the hallways and a pariah among every Nebby Debbie and Cranky Carl at school board meetings? What do these teachers want from us after all?

Although it has little to do with politics, we felt the need to inform you that researchers at Harrisburg University have discovered a new dinosaur that walked the earth with T. rexes. And they say Harrisburg never produces anything cool. A NEW DINOSAUR IS COOL!

Over on the Triad socials, give a shout to our own Yvonne Roberts, who was named to Philly Metro Paper’s Black Power Players 2024. If you don’t know, you better ask somebody!

In our We Can’t Make This Up segment, we take you to Olney, England, where they once again held the annual pancake race to honor the start of lent. So, to recap, in England you have a few hundred women holding stacks of pancakes on skillets, racing through the streets. While in New Orleans, you have Mardi Gras and enough booze to sink an aircraft carrier. Sorry, England, ya lost again.

That’s what passes for news around here, as we prepare for yet another winter storm that the varmint in Punxsutawney did NOT predict. Nice work, Phil. Get a real job. From all your friends at Team Triad, have a great weekend!