Ray Landis

Ray Landis

A former spokesman for the Pennsylvania AARP, Ray E. Landis writes about the issues that matter to older Pennsylvanians. His work appears biweekly on the Capital-Star's Commentary Page. Readers may follow him on Twitter @RELandis.


Commentary: The politics of aging, 2024 edition

By: - October 26, 2023

Older voters may be set to reassert themselves in 2024 because, in a country which seems hopelessly divided along partisan lines, an issue not necessarily heading the list for squabbling politicians is top of mind of many seniors. That issue? The dramatic increase in the cost of food and other necessities and the resulting impact on those with relatively fixed incomes.

Pennsylvania Capitol Building. May 24, 2022. Harrisburg, Pa. (Photo by Amanda Berg, for the Capital-Star).

Bravo for expanding the property tax/rent rebate program. Now let’s find a better way to fund it.

By: - August 18, 2023

Gov. Josh Shapiro and members of the General Assembly are taking a victory lap around Pennsylvania touting the expansion of the commonwealth’s Property Tax and Rent Rebate program.  There’s a great deal more to this legislation than the expansion of a popular program for low-to-middle income seniors, however. It speaks to the use of lottery […]

A spiking thermometer against a bright sky and hot sun

Commentary: Pennsylvania should ban utility shutoffs in extreme summer heat

By: - August 2, 2023

Headlines around the globe this summer have featured the heat and extreme weather impacting the Northern Hemisphere. Fires, floods, and record setting temperatures have stretched from Europe to North America to China as governments and people try to adjust to what appears to be a new normal for our climate. A growing concern as temperatures […]


Pa.’s voucher debate isn’t over. It’s just on hold. We’ll see how it ends | Ray E. Landis

By: - July 17, 2023

Meanwhile, funding for scores of state programs and school districts remains in limbo.

Bhutanese costumer Basudha Rizal of Harrisburg buys groceries at BNN International Market on Derry Street in Harrisburg (Photo by Mark Pynes/PennLive).

While Congress fiddles on immigration reform, central Pa. embraced Bhutanese migrants | Ray Landis

By: - June 25, 2023

An immigration know-nothing in the White House would just make a bad situation worse.

happy senior couple

Shapiro’s master plan for older Pennsylvanian has good first steps | Ray E. Landis

By: - June 11, 2023

Taking words on a page and making them real will take work. But it can happen if we work together.


Here’s the risk to Pa. — and other states — from our national disunion | Ray E. Landis

By: - May 25, 2023

A national divorce would put the most vulnerable at risk. They must be protected.

Pa. House Speaker Joanna McClinton, D-Philadelphia (Photo by Amanda Mustard for the Pennsylvania Capital-Star).

Sure the budget jockeying is interesting. But don’t forget it impacts real people | Ray E. Landis

By: - May 8, 2023

The one-vote majority Democrats hold in the lower chamber could also be more a curse than a blessing in budget negotiations.


If you pay them, they will come | Ray E. Landis

By: - April 23, 2023

Waiving degree requirements was a good idea. But if you want to attract the best, pay a competitive wage.

Aerial view of the train derailment wreckage in East Palestine. (Screenshot from NTSB B-roll recorded Feb. 5, 2023)

A bank crashes. A train derails. And you wonder why we need government regulation? | Ray Landis

By: - April 9, 2023

Everyone says they don't need the government -- until they really need the government.

U.S. President Joe Biden and U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris arrive to a meeting with governors visiting from states around the country in the East Room of the White House on February 10, 2023 in Washington, DC. This weekend President Biden is hosting governors that are attending the annual National Governors Association Winter Meeting. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

What to do about the problem that is Medicare Advantage? | Ray E. Landis

By: - March 23, 2023

Medicare Advantage plans are offerings by private insurers which replace standard Medicare coverage.


PPL’s problem proves it, electricity shopping isn’t in consumers’ best interest | Ray E. Landis

By: - February 26, 2023

Pennsylvania’s electric deregulation law has again let down consumers. Here's how.