Finance - May 16, 2014

Lieutenant governor’s race remains tight

The race for the Democratic nomination for Lieutenant governor remains tight going into the last week before the primary.  In the latest Harper poll, released Tuesday, State Senator Mike Stack leads former U.S. Rep. Mark Critz 20%-18%.  Jockeying for third, Harrisburg City Councilman Brad Koplinski came in at 9%, Bradford County Commissioner Mark Smith at 6%, and State Rep. Brandon Neuman at 5% remain well behind the front runners. 

Importantly however, the poll also found that 42% of Democratic voters are not sure who they would vote for.  While the lieutenant governor’s race is traditionally less glamorous, the outcome determines the governor’s running mate and may carry implications for how well the democratic ticket will do in the more conservative pockets of the state.  Stack maintains support over Critz in the Philadelphia (23-10%) and Scranton (19-11%) regions while Critz holds a lead over Stack throughout the rest of the state, drawing his largest support from the Pittsburg/southwest region (32-19%).  The primary is set for Tuesday May 20th. 

Philadelphia anticipating visit from Pope

Vatican officials toured the city of Philadelphia in preparation for a major Roman Catholic gathering being planned for 2015 which many anticipate will include a visit from the pope.  Attending the World Meeting of Families in September 2015 would be the pope’s first visit to the US.  Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput has said he is personally convinced that the pope is coming, however, no announcement has been made just yet.  Philadelphia officials along with Governor Corbett recently visited Rome to meet with Vatican officials in preparing for the event.  According to a WITF story, local organizers have revealed that the theme of the World Meeting of Families will be:  "Love is our mission: The family fully alive.''