Tuesday, July 12, 2016

How to Lie Spin like the House Democratic Caucus

Way back on May 17th of this year, which qualifies as ancient history in political terms, I wrote to the Pennsylvania House Democratic Caucus to ask them if they would vote for a bill that gives special treatment to the Democratic National convention above that of the citizens of the state; in other words, the proposal to allow bars in Philly hosting DNC events to bring booze in through non-PLCB channels. Their reply:

"I fully expect the caucus to be fully against any relaxation of PA liquor laws while the Democratic Convention is in Philly. You need to treat all visitors as you do the citizens."

Bill must be from Pennsylvania; who knew?
Well...someone must have forgotten to tell the members in the House Appropriations Committee, since every Democratic member voted for it.

Given a second chance, the bill was then voted on by the House Liquor Control Committee. No Democrat voted against it, but there were four who chose not to vote at all; a clear vote of conscience (or else they were at lunch).

And Vote Number Three, the House Rules Committee? Once again, all the Democrats voted for it.

The last chance to actually do what the Caucus "fully expected" that they would do was the full vote of the House. And again, EVERY Democrat voted for it. At least 41 Republicans voted against. Either the Democratic Caucus has no influence on the Democrats, or they didn't know what they were talking about or flat-out lied, or they thought they had an out.

Because while the DNC will get special treatment, it's okay, because now it is a "National Event License" (that the PLCB makes money off of), instead of just special treatment for the Democrats. Only guess who are the only groups that qualify: the Republican National Convention, or the Democratic National Convention! 
Section 408.17 page 6 line 25: National Event Permit.--(a) Upon  application of the chief executive of a national political party conducting its national convention in this Commonwealth..."  I guess the Libertarians or the Greens could apply, but I don't know if the PLCB would consider them national parties. Probably not.

In any case, instead of trying to slide a one time special use bill that places the political class temporarily above the citizens, they decided to say screw it, let's make it a law that officially places the political class above the citizens any time we want. Now the Republicans are at fault too, although they didn't vote like herd animals to make you second class citizens in your own state. So when election time comes around remember who officially thinks they are better than you are...and who thinks that they represent you.


Anonymous said...

Not on point but I see the LCB has issued RFPs to comply with the new law and has now created a COO position under the Executive Director. Two positions to do the same job. They will bankrupt the agency trying to do what most private businesses do every day!

Albert Brooks said...

Saw that COO position yesterday and am working on a story about it.

Anonymous said...

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”
― George Orwell, Animal Farm

Anonymous said...

You missed a strike. House rules voted yes twice! Once to send it to the floor and a second time after the floor sent it back to rules in order to have them remove attached amendments designed to make Act 39 detrimental to lcb future profits. They even repealed the privatization study called for in act 39. That is the real story. That and the fact Mike Turzai voted with the deme at every step.

Anonymous said...

It also appears that they have eliminated the CFO position and moved the function in to a lower level unit with procurement.

Albert Brooks said...

AFAIK there was no CFO position. It isn't listed in the 2012-13, 2013-14 reports or the 2014-15 ones either. August Hehemann was a Director and so was Oren Bachman.