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Jack Wagner likely candidate for Pennsylvania governor

09.13.13

SEPTEMBER 2013, LEHIGH VALLEY Edition of The Union News

Jack Wagner likely candidate for Pennsylvania governor

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSABE@AOL.COM

REGION, August 22nd- Former Democratic Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner recently stated he is considering entering the 2014 Pennsylvania’s governor race. Mr. Wagner resides in Pittsburgh and said he will announce whether he is running in September and if he enters the race he would be the only western Pennsylvanian currently in the field.

Mr. Wagner served two four-year terms as Pennsylvania Auditor General and unsuccessfully attempted to gain the 2010 Democratic gubernatorial nomination. He received the support of the labor community while being a candidate for the auditor general. Former Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato won the Democratic nomination for Pennsylvania governor in 2010 and Republican candidate Tom Corbett defeated Mr. Onorato in the fall general election.

Meanwhile, the labor community will be active in the 2014 election season hoping to deny Mr. Corbett a second four-year term as Pennsylvania governor. Many believe Tom Corbett is the most anti-union Governor in the state’s history. The labor community has put a high priority on defeating Mr. Corbett in 2014.

Nearly all of his legislative initiatives involve union represented workers being eliminated. The Corbett agenda has hurt all three groups of the labor community, the building and construction trades, the public sector unions, and the industrial trade unions.

Mr. Corbett supports the privitization of Pennsylvania State Liquor Stores, which would put more than 5,000 family sustaining jobs at risk, supports charter schools, supports legislation that would make Pennsylvania a right-to-work state, supports the elimination or making changes to the state prevailing wage law, and awarded a contract to let a British company manage the Pennsylvania Lottery System, a nearly totally unionized system, that would have resulted in those jobs put in harms way. Pennsylvania Attorney Kathleen Kane rejected his plan in February and the system remains operated by the state.

Several statewide political pundits have calculated that at least six Democrats have put their names into the field of candidates vying for the chance to challenge Mr. Corbett.

However, the labor community will most likely split their support for several of those candidates during the primary election season including current Democratic Pennsylvania Treasurer Robert McCord and United States House of Representative (13th Legislative District) Allyson Schwartz and likely candidate Jack Wagner.

Most likely, the division will result in the Pennsylvania American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) not endorsing any candidate while attempting to unite the labor community to defeat Mr. Corbett in the November 2014 election.