October 14, 2022

It was not the best of weeks for former President Trump. After being pounded, punched and pommeled (figuratively, thank goodness) by the January 6 Committee, members voted unanimously to serve him with a subpoena.

Trump called the committee’s hearing a publicity stunt and criticized members for not asking sooner for his testimony. He did not indicate whether he would have testified.

Even as the committee deliberated, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected Trump’s request, without comment, to intervene in the legal fight over documents seized by the FBI. He was seeking the return of about 100 documents the FBI took during an Aug. 8 search of Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home.

There may not be many things on which Democrat Josh Shapiro and Republican Doug Mastriano agree. But the gubernatorial candidates both support the idea that money intended to be used for bridges and highways be used for that purpose instead of State Police operations. Doing that would free up a half-billion dollars for sorely needed bridge and highway improvements without increasing the gas tax.

Spotlight PA took a look at where Mastriano and Shapiro stand on college funding, transparency, and debt forgiveness. Not as much agreement to be found here.

Good news for teachers – the Pennsylvania School Employees Retirement System posted a return on investment of 2.28 percent for the 2021-22 fiscal year, one in which investment markets were roiled by war in Ukraine and surging fuel prices. PSERS ranked 7th out of returns posted by 83 major public employee pension funds studied by the trade journal Pensions & Investments.

PennLive columnist John Baer has a bit of advice for U.S. Senate candidates Mehmet Oz and John Fetterman: focus on what you bring to the table, rather than why people shouldn’t vote for the other guy.

For one hour on Oct. 25, Fetterman and Oz will go face-to-face in a televised debate in Harrisburg. Live from the WHTM abc27 studios in Harrisburg, the debate will start at 8 p.m. and be moderated by WHTM abc27 news anchor Dennis Owens and WPXI anchor Lisa Sylvester.

OK, so read the following very closely: the U.S. Supreme Court vacated a ruling by a lower court that allowed undated mail-in ballots to be counted. The lower court had said a requirement for a hand-written date on the outside of return envelopes was “immaterial.” Then, Acting Secretary of State Leigh Chapman issued a statement saying the high court decision did not affect a separate, previous ruling by state Commonwealth Court in favor of counting ballots without properly dated exterior envelopes. Got it? We’re glad to have unraveled that for you.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette workers who went on strike more than a week ago are calling on people to pull their print and online subscriptions to the newspaper to show support for the striking workers. Unions representing production, distribution and advertising workers struck after losing their health care coverage.

Attention leaf-peepers: a long stretch of the Turnpike’s Northeast Extension (aka I-476) will be closed in both directions this weekend in order to replace a bridge. The closure will be between the Lehigh Valley Interchange, Exit 56, and the Mahoning Valley Interchange, Exit 74. It will begin at 9 tonight, reopening at 4 a.m. Monday. For detour information and other details, follow this link.

Team Triad sends condolences to the friends and families of longtime state Rep. Anthony DeLuca, who died on Sunday at home following a brief battle with lymphoma, and former Rep. Rick Cessar, who served in the House for 24 years.

The Biden administration soon will roll out the most far-reaching federal student loan relief plan in American history, and borrowers must heed dates to benefit. Here’s what you need to know.

When former Pennsylvania Gov. Dick Thornburgh died in December 2020 at the age of 88, COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns prevented a public memorial service. Nearly two years later, Mr. Thornburgh’s friends and constituents will get a chance to show their respects at a public tribute set for 3 p.m. Oct. 16 at Shadyside Presbyterian Church on Westminster Place in Shadyside.

Following the death last week of PA Supreme Court Chief Justice Max Baer, the question is whether Gov. Tom Wolf will nominate someone during his last few months in office, or will he wait and allow the next administration to make the selection? The Trib dissects the question.

And in our We Can’t Make This Up segment… just in time for Halloween, our friends at HuffPost have compiled a long list of costumes, from the outrageous to the asinine. Click here to see depictions of a smart-ass, a birth-control contraceptive pack and – our favorite – an empty roll of toilet paper. Warning: some costumes may be considered more than a little tasteless.

And that’s what passes for news this week, as we blast through the halfway mark of the 10th month! Have a great weekend, and we’ll meet you back here next week!