Donald Trump

Wolf Blames Trump, Congress For Spiking Health Coverage Cost

3 hours ago
Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf's administration is blaming President Donald Trump for a sharp increase in the cost of health insurance that'll take effect next year for residents who buy individual plans.

Wolf's administration released the approved 2018 rates Monday, saying the average increase will be just over 30 percent. Wolf's office said the increase would've been less than 8 percent if Trump hadn't halted cost-sharing reduction payments to insurers or created uncertainty around the fate of the individual mandate.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, Pennsylvania's leading hospital association and advocates for the poor all reacted strongly Friday to a move by the Trump administration to stop paying cost-sharing subsidies that have helped lower the price of health insurance policies sold through the Healthcare.gov marketplace.

Alex Brandon / AP

President Donald Trump took to the midstate Wednesday to pitch his tax plan to a cheering crowd of blue-collar workers and conservative Pennsylvania politicians.

He’s selling the proposal as one that would boost the middle class and small businesses—though many opponents say it would be a better deal for the rich. 

Jake Savitz / 90.5 WESA

Mayor Bill Peduto says the relationship between cities across the country and the presidential office has changed drastically since Donald Trump was inaugurated, citing infrequent check-ins compared to the Obama administration.

"The Obama administration, all the way down to each of the departments in the White House, reached out on a weekly basis and we worked with them very closely," Peduto said. "With this administration, they obviously have chosen to go a different route."

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

President Donald Trump plans to visit Harrisburg Wednesday to pitch his tax reform plan. 

Charles Dharapak / AP Photo

Gov. Tom Wolf is urging the Pennsylvania legislature to make birth control coverage a mandate in the state after the Trump administration pledged to roll back Obama-era requirements that most employers cover birth control for employees through their health insurance.

pens-at-wh
Susan Walsh / AP

The Penguins will visit the White House on Tuesday to commemorate last season's Stanley Cup Championship win, becoming the first professional sports team to attend a White House ceremony since President Donald Trump criticized NFL players last month.

Trump said first at a political rally in Alabama, and later via Twitter, that professional athletes who protest police violence by kneeling during the national anthem should be fired. 

Gene J. Puskar / AP

It's been more than two weeks since Hurricane Maria devastated the island of Puerto Rico—knocking out the power grid, leaving people homeless and hospitals with dwindling supplies. Despite President Donald Trump's comments contrasting the storm to a "real catastrophe like [Hurricane] Katrina," many in Pittsburgh are eager to respond to the island's needs.

Kiichiro Sato / AP

Pittsburgh sports teams are at the center of the debate over protests during the national anthem. Last Sunday, as football teams across the country kneeled or raised a fist in protest, the Steelers waited off field while the national anthem was played in Chicago.

Kathleen J. Davis / 90.5 WESA

U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta was in Pittsburgh Wednesday morning to speak at the Shale Insight Conference and tour the Carpenters' Union Training Center. 

Wagner Gets Bannon's Stamp Of Approval In Governor's Race

Sep 26, 2017
Marc Levy / AP

President Donald Trump hasn't endorsed a candidate in Pennsylvania's gubernatorial election next year, but Scott Wagner might have something close to it: Steve Bannon's stamp of approval.

Bannon, the divisive ex-Trump strategist, urged a conservative gathering at a St. Louis hotel on Sunday to support the Republican state senator from York County.

Pennsylvania Official: Hackers Maybe Sought Voter Records

Sep 26, 2017
Marc Levy / AP

Pennsylvania's top elections official said Monday that he thinks Russian hackers who tried unsuccessfully to penetrate the state's election systems had hoped to alter voter registration records to sow confusion and frustration right before last year's presidential election.

Secretary of State Pedro Cortes, however, said he otherwise has been given very little information by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security about the supposed attempts by Russian hackers, including how the hackers were connected to Russia, their method and the timing of their attempts.

Nam Y. Huh / AP

Jersey sales for Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva peaked Monday on at least two fan websites after he alone opted to stand on field during the national anthem in Chicago on Sunday.

AP

 

The sports world is reacting to President Donald Trump's remarks about pro football, including the Pittsburgh Steelers. 

The Steelers chose to stay in their locker room for the national anthem before their game against the Chicago Bears, coach Mike Tomlin told CBS.

Sen. Pat Toomey A Key Player In Trump Tax Overhaul Effort

Sep 18, 2017
Emma Lee / WHYY

As President Donald Trump and Congress undertake an overhaul of the U.S. tax code this fall, Pennsylvania U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey is likely to be a key player in the effort.

Toomey brings a passion for tax policy and years of experience as president of the conservative group, Club for Growth.

Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

Among Pittsburgh DREAMers who benefited from the Deferred Action for Children Arrivals program – also called DACA – the Trump administration's decision to end the program elicited reactions ranging from distress to resignation on Wednesday.

Some were at a loss, saying they have no way to ensure they can stay in the U.S. if DACA expires in six months without a replacement from Congress.

Jacquelyn Martin / AP

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced on Tuesday that the Trump Administration will rescind the Deferred Action for Children Arrivals program – also called DACA – and allow legal protections for the roughly 800,000 “DREAMers,” who arrived in the country illegally as children, to expire in six months.

Unless Congress acts, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto said on Tuesday, ending DACA will hurt the city’s universities and hospitals as well as tech and other corporate employers.

Evan Vucci / AP

A focus group of 12 Pittsburgh voters expressed bipartisan disappointment in Donald Trump's leadership skills as president. The group consisted of five Trump voters, six Hillary Clinton voters and one person who voted for Green Party candidate Jill Stein.

John Miller / 90.5 WESA

One of President Trump’s signature campaign speeches was at a scrap aluminum plant near Pittsburgh in January 2016.

“We are going to put American steel -- and aluminum – back into the backbone of our country,” he said at the speech in Monessen, Pa. “This alone will create massive numbers of jobs, high-paying jobs.”


Renewables In The Trump Era: Doomed Or Too Big To Fail?

Aug 24, 2017
John Stamets / Flickr

Donald Trump is a big fan of fossil fuels. Renewables not so much.

Gerry Broome / AP

Professors at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania have come out in support of a petition urging the school to revoke the honorary degree of President Donald Trump after he said both sides were to blame for the deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Kelly McCoy, a recent graduate of the private university in Bethlehem, started the change.org petition. Trump received his honorary degree after he served as commencement speaker in 1988.

NPR

President Trump is addressing the nation Monday at 9 p.m., on U.S. engagement and "the path forward" in Afghanistan and South Asia.

Senior U.S. officials tell NPR that the president is expected to order about 4,000 additional troops to Afghanistan. The decision follows months of deliberation within the Trump administration, involving top military commanders, political advisers and even enlisted veterans of the nearly 16-year war.

NPR journalists from across the newsroom are offering context and analysis about President Trump's remarks.

Kathleen J. Davis / 90.5 WESA

In the wake of the violent clash in Charlottesville, Va. last weekend, Governor Tom Wolf has urged Pennsylvania residents to unite against hatred and bigotry.

He also criticized President Donald Trump's remarks that there was "blame on both sides" during the event, which left one peaceful protestor dead and several injured.

Kathleen J. Davis / 90.5 WESA

United Steelworkers President Leo Gerard said Wednesday he supports a NAFTA rewrite but he's concerned President Donald Trump's closed-door meetings won't take workers' needs into consideration.

"During the re-negotiations, it's really important and urgent that workers' voices be heard so the labor movement in the United States, Canada and Mexico will work together to advance workers rights," Gerard said.

U.S. Factory Jobs Are High-Tech, But The Workers Are Not

Aug 16, 2017
John Minchillo / AP

Herbie Mays is 3M proud, and it shows — in the 3M shirt he wears; in the 3M ring he earned after three decades at the company's plant in suburban Cincinnati; in the way he shows off a card from a 3M supervisor, praising Mays as "a GREAT employee."

But it's all nostalgia.

Mays' last day at 3M was in March. Bent on cutting costs and refocusing its portfolio, the company decided to close the plant that made bandages, knee braces and other health care supplies and move work to its plant in Mexico.

Evan Vucci / AP

Over the last week, President Donald Trump has vacillated about how to handle the opioid epidemic that has wracked much of the U.S., including Pennsylvania.

Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh was one of many cities across the country where anti-racism rallies were held Sunday. A candlelight vigil drew a few hundred people to Schenley Plaza in Oakland.

Matt Rourke / AP

A commission created by President Donald Trump asked him to declare a state of emergency over the nation’s opioid epidemic. Earlier this week, he declined. On Thursday, according to a White House pool report, he changed his mind.

The declaration would free the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to grant additional funding for resources, address leadership shortfalls and make changes to Medicaid coverage.

Kristi Jan Hoover / 90.5 WESA

The Trump administration says a Pennsylvania-based coal company has won a contract to supply coal used for heating to Ukraine's state-owned power company.

The deal announced Monday calls for Xcoal Energy and Resources to ship 700,000 tons of thermal coal to the Ukraine to heat homes and businesses. Xcoal is based in Latrobe, Westmoreland County.

The first shipment is expected to leave the Port of Baltimore next month at a cost of $113 per metric ton.

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