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Mark OKeefe

COMMENTARY

Were Wolf’s budget season trades worth the price of a deal? Democrats may find out in 2022 | Mark O’Keefe

By: - July 5, 2021

Was Gov. Tom Wolf trying to put a good face on the $40.8 billion state budget recently passed by the General Assembly, calling it a “good budget?” While Wolf was happy the Legislature passed the budget ahead of the June 30 deadline; it contained none of the significant proposals he made during his budget address […]

COMMENTARY

A Cambria County lawmaker has a plan to make Pa.’s liquor license system more competitive. Will it work? | Mark O’Keefe

By: - June 18, 2021

Ever wonder why you have to bring alcohol to your favorite restaurant? Ever wonder why your favorite bar closes and never reopens? Situations like the above happen primarily because of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board’s rules and regulations. In the first situation, a restaurant may not have a liquor license because few are available in […]

COMMENTARY

Does Pa.’s Primary Day rebuke of Wolf signal rough sailing for Dems in 2022? | Mark O’Keefe

By: - May 28, 2021

Wolf's appeal or lack of it could be a factor in the U.S. Senate race, especially if Lt. Gov. John Fetterman wins the Democratic nomination.

COMMENTARY

Pa.’s volunteer fire departments are in crisis. How Pa. lawmakers are moving to help | Mark O’Keefe

By: - May 6, 2021

In 1970, there were about 300,000 volunteer firefighters in Pennsylvania. That number has plummeted to 38,000 today.

COMMENTARY

Will Pa. lawmakers pass local police radar bill — or let it pass them by again? | Mark O’Keefe

By: - April 16, 2021

The Pennsylvania State Troopers Association, the union representing members of the Pennsylvania State Police, added its support this year for the first time.

COMMENTARY

My family’s experience explains why mental health reform has to be part of the solution to mass shootings | Mark O’Keefe

By: - April 7, 2021

While taking the guns out of the hands of the mentally ill who are dangerous would be a good start, actually helping those people deal with their problems would be the best course of action.

COMMENTARY

The Pa. Gaming Control Board is a patronage dumping ground. It’s time to fix it | Mark O’Keefe

By: - March 18, 2021

Despite a massive outcry over several recent questionable appointments to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, it appears as if the dust has settled with no changes in sight. The hirings included Democrat Frank Dermody, of Allegheny County, and Republican Frances Regan of York County. Dermody, the former Democratic floor leader in the state House, lost […]

COMMENTARY

Judicial remap amendment is on hold – for now. The risk remains | Mark O’Keefe

By: - February 26, 2021

Once again, the Pennsylvania Legislature is proving that it's an institution full of uncertainty and unpredictability.

COMMENTARY

The House and Senate fixed a pricey mistake by scheduling two special elections for primary day | Mark O’Keefe

By: - February 9, 2021

In 2020, lawmakers called special elections six weeks before the primary election. Taxpayers got nothing of value from the early timing, other than a bill.

COMMENTARY

Johnstown lawmaker scores big win in fight with Pa. liquor board. But the fight continues | Mark O’Keefe

By: - January 26, 2021

The real losers, noted Burns, were taxpayers who paid for the futile legal battle.

COMMENTARY

Fayette County was already struggling. Now the pandemic could break it | Mark O’Keefe

By: - January 15, 2021

Fayette County's residents were already struggling with a poor economy and high unemployment. Then the pandemic hit.

COMMENTARY

In elections, education, like demographics, is now political destiny | Mark O’Keefe

By: - December 31, 2020

It seems inevitable, for now anyway, that education levels will take their place among gender, race, and income levels in determining how elections are won and lost.