A Heavy Lift: In new ad, DePasquale uses CrossFit as a metaphor for politics | Tuesday Morning Coffee

August 25, 2020 7:12 am

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Good Tuesday Morning, Fellow Seekers.

So when he’s not auditing volunteer fire departments or holding one of many press conferences, Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale is something of a CrossFit and Spartan race training maniac.

If you didn’t know this, don’t feel too bad. Because this out-of-office sideline is something that, like his Star Wars fandom, the York County Democrat hardly ever talks about on social media.

In a new 30-second spot that we can exclusively share here this morning, DePasquale, the Democratic nominee for central Pennsylvania’s 10th Congressional District … forgive us … pumps up his cross-training regime, using it as a metaphor for how he’ll be a tireless defender of the district’s working-class voters on Capitol Hill.

“I’m Eugene DePasquale, and you know what? Folks here at home are getting screwed by people in Washington,” DePasquale intones in a voice-over, while he grimaces onscreen, picking up very heavy things and then putting them back down again.

These heavyweight interests (again, forgive us) arrayed against the common man, include “The rich. Political insiders. Big corporations,” DePasquale says in the ad. And if you send him to Washington, he vows, he’ll be “tough enough to stand tall,” against those same interests getting handouts and favors.

Though, we must confess, we are unsure how often DePasquale will be called up to roll enormous tires through the well of the House, or shake those really big ropes up and down in the pursuit of legislation. Unless, of course, they’ve changed the voting procedures down there since we covered Congress. It has been a while.

In an email, DePasquale’s campaign said the spot, the second the campaign has debuted in the last few weeks, will start running on broadcast and cable outlets, as well as digitally, across the district, which includes Cumberland, Dauphin, and York counties, on Tuesday.

Our community knows that politicians in Washington take every opportunity to look out for themselves and screw the rest of us – they’re sick of it and so is Eugene,” spokesman Kunal Atit said in an email. “That is why he is running to hold D.C. politicians and their lobbyist friends accountable. In Congress, Eugene will stand tall on behalf of south-central Pennsylvania, and won’t ever hesitate to punch back when he has to.”

DePasquale is looking to unseat fellow York Countian, GOP U.S. Rep. Scott Perry, a U.S. Army veteran, who has flown combat missions in the Middle East.

Asked if DePasquale was trying to out-tough Perry, who has talked about his own hardscrabble roots and military career on the stump, Atit cut to the chase.

“No,” he said. “If we were trying to draw a contrast, you’d know it.”

Perry’s spokesman, Matthew Beynon was happy to draw a contrast, telling the Capital-Star in an email that DePasquale “needs to spend less time doing pilates and taking selfies, and more time doing the job the people elected him to do.”

Perry is “the one candidate in this race who has fought for the hardworking people of south central Pennsylvania, holding Congress accountable, stopping congressional pay raises, and ending wasteful spending. Scott is a self-made man who rose from poverty to become a general in the Army and is now fighting every day for families in Congress,” Beynon said.

The Pennsylvania Capitol building. (Capital-Star photo by Sarah Anne Hughes)

Our Stuff.
A Pittsburgh Police sergeant has been placed on administrative leave for maintaining a Facebook page where the officer shared racist memes that insult Democratic vice presidential candidate Kamala D. Harris and Black Lives Matter protesters, our partners at Pittsburgh City Paper report.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro’s office arrested 35 people in drug raids in Philadelphia on Monday, our partners at the Philadelphia Tribune report.

U.S. House Democrats pummeled U.S. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy over sharp declines in on-time mail deliveryCapital-Star Washington Reporter Allison Stevens writes.

On our Commentary Page this morning, the 2020 election will pit Joe Biden against a ‘grave intelligence’ threat, opinion regular Dick Polman writes. And a small business advocate explains how digital services helped keep small businesses going during quarantine.

(Capital-Star photo by John L. Micek)

Republican leaders in the state Senate have introduced legislation banning the use of drop-boxes for mail-in ballots, the Inquirer reports. 
Jobless Pennsylvanians will have to wait weeks before they get $300 in enhanced payments from the federal government, the Tribune-Review reports.
has the details on what school districts will do if students test positive for COVID-19.
The Morning Call has five takeaways on how Pennsylvanians view issues ranging from the coronavirus response to voting logistics.
The Hanover Area schools in NEPA have delayed the start of fall sports practice, the Citizens-Voice reports. 

Here’s your #Harrisburg Instagram of the Day:


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Hello. Good morning. #goodmorning #sunrise #headingtowork #monday #harrisburg

A post shared by Shawn Ingram (@fripa76) on

Even with the virus persisting, Erie County schools are prepping for a return to class, the Times-News reports. 
Most New Jersey schools are delaying in-person instruction, WHYY-FM reports.
Penn State says it’s not considering disciplinary action for students who attended two large gatherings, WPSU-FM reports. 
Three former GOP Pa. congressmen: Charlie Dent, Jim Greenwood, and Bill Clinger are part of a ‘Republicans for Biden’ campaign, PoliticsPA reports.  
One rural American town’s population swelled because of immigrants — will they be counted in 2020? takes up the question.
Politico’s Tim Alberta has the top-line takeaways from night one of the Republican National Convention.

What Goes On.
10 a.m, 140 MC: House Environmental Resources & Energy Committee
11:30 a.m, Pike County Training Center, Lords Valley, Pa.: Senate Veterans Affairs & Emergency Preparedness Committee

Gov. Tom Wolf
 holds a 10 a.m. newser at a childcare center in Middletown, Dauphin County, to discuss his fall agenda.

What Goes On (Nakedly Political Edition).
Rep. Jim Struzzi, R-Indiana,
 holds an event of some kind at Indiana Country Club, time/admission revealed upon RSVP.
State Sen. Lisa Boscola, D-Northampton holds a golf outing at Northampton Country Club in scenic Easton, Pa. Admission runs $125 to $2,500.

You Say It’s Your Birthday Dept.
Belated best wishes go out this morning to Shira Goodman, of the ADL-Philly, and Geoff Morrow of House Democratic Communications, both of whom celebrated on Sunday. More belated wishes go out to reader Chris Ellis of Reading who celebrated on Monday. Wholehearted congratulations go out this morning to Capital-Star Correspondent Michala Butler, who celebrates today. Congratulations, all around.

Heavy Rotation.
Here’s a gem from Aztec Camera to get your morning rolling, it’s ‘Good Morning Britain.’

Tuesday’s Gratuitous Hockey Link.
The New York Islanders 
blanked Philadelphia 4-0 in Game One of their Eastern Conference semi-final.

And now you’re up to date.

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John L. Micek

A three-decade veteran of the news business, John L. Micek is the Pennsylvania Capital-Star's former Editor-in-Chief.