The 2022 Pa. Farm Show Butter Sculpture (Commonwealth Media Services photo).
Happy weekend, all.
State agriculture officials gathered in York County on Friday to announce the theme for the 2023 Farm Show.
Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding said the theme for the 107th Pennsylvania Farm Show, which will be held at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg from Jan. 7-14, will be “Rooted in Progress.”
This year’s theme “honors our roots and vision for the future,” Redding said, adding that the theme is a “nod to the progress made for agriculture in the commonwealth during the Wolf Administration.”
“We were ‘Harvesting More’ in 2022 following a virtual year in 2021 during the pandemic – and now, we’re celebrating accomplishments in agriculture, while recognizing the agricultural drive and vision to innovate and inspire,” Redding said. “In 2023, we will be ‘Rooted in Progress.’”
In a statement, the department said the theme was chosen to “honor the deep roots of agriculture in Pennsylvania’s heritage, as well as the significant updates and pivots farmers and their families have made, and continue to make, to grow and adapt as markets, consumers, climate, and resources change.”
As always, the top five stories from this week are below.
Pennsylvania will increase the income threshold for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) applicants next month, making the program accessible to more Pennsylvanians, Wolf administration officials said on Thursday.
Beginning on Oct. 1, Pennsylvania will increase the income threshold for SNAP applicants to 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Income Guidelines (FPIG), the Department of Human Services said, adding that “more than 420,000 additional Pennsylvanians in more than 174,000 households will be newly eligible for SNAP” as a result of the change.
Democrats are aware that the search of former President Donald Trump’s home by the FBI hurt the Party politically. This Aug. 17 headline from The New York Times, referencing the Inflation Reduction Act, says it all: President Takes a Bow, but Spotlight Stays on His Predecessor.
Yet, even with this knowledge, 88 percent of Democrats want Trump charged for fomenting the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol. Slightly over half of Democrats think he will be.
Undoubtedly, Democrats are also hoping that state criminal investigations into financial improprieties and election interference will lead to prosecutions.
And now there is concrete evidence from the search of his home that Trump broke the law by possessing “top secret” documents. Since no one is above the law, surely now there must be a criminal case.
There are surprises in just about every political poll, but some numbers from the recent Franklin and Marshall College poll showed particularly astounding results.
In the poll conducted by Franklin & Marshall College’s Center for Opinion Research, John Fetterman, the state’s lieutenant governor, leads GOP candidate Dr. Mehmet Oz 43 percent to 30 percent in the Senate race with 20 percent undecided, while Josh Shapiro leads GOP state Sen. Doug Mastriano 44 percent to 33 percent in the race for governor with 19 percent undecided.
Nothing was surprising in those numbers. Both Fetterman and Shapiro jumped out to early leads and have continued to enjoy comfortable leads in both races.
Not so long ago, Democrats faced long odds of retaining their majorities in Congress after the November midterm elections.
Now, Democrats are the favorites to keep control of the U.S. Senate. Furthermore, Democratic success in recent special elections, including a surprise victory in Alaska, has party leaders believing they can upset predictions of a Republican takeover of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Democrats have good reasons for their optimism. After the U.S Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision in June that ended abortion rights, voter registrations by women surged around the country. Kansas voters rejected an effort to restrict abortion protections.
So, this isn’t a “John Fetterman” column. And you know what we’re talking about here.
After more than two years on the statewide political stage, there’s already a well-established journalistic shorthand for Pennsylvania’s new lieutenant governor.
It’s the lather, rinse, repeat formula of “black clothes, bald head, tattoos, gosh he’s tall but skinnier, cheerleader for the struggling steel town of Braddock, Pa.” that’s launched a thousand profiles — including a recent one by NYMag.com.
And while all that’s true about Fetterman, it often feels like the media branding of Gov. Tom Wolf’s second-in-command overshadows the actual human behind it.
And that’s the week. We’ll see you back here next week.
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