Politics

Essential Pittsburgh
5:19 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

With Tom Wolf Leading in Polls, Competitors Point to His Political Shortcomings

Tom Wolf is one of four remaining candidates in Pennsylvania's DEmocratic primary race for governor.
Credit Tom Wolf Campaign

In one week, Democratic Party members from across the state will choose their candidate to face Governor Tom Corbett in November’s gubernatorial election.

Last night, the remaining Democratic candidates for governor; state treasurer Rob McCord, Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz, Katie McGinty and front-runner Tom Wolf faced each other for a final debate at Drexel University in Philadelphia.

Capitol correspondent Mary Wilson covered the debate.

Read more
Chautauqua Institution Lectures
2:57 pm
Mon March 17, 2014

Trevor Potter Connects Politics and Market Forces

Former FEC chairman Trevor Potter, founding president of the Campaign Legal Center and general counsel to John McCain's 2000 and 2008 presidential campaigns, speaks on how market forces affect the political process, specifically with regard to campaign financing and Super PACs.

Essential Pittsburgh
5:06 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Millennials Rejecting Polarized Politics & Changing Nonprofit Giving

City Council Member Dan Gilman
Katie Blackley 90.5 WESA

Nonprofits in the region must redefine their community relevance for the Millennial generation as these young adults enter society with a completely different approach to giving.

According to Linda Jones, Vice President of Workplace Campaign for the United Way of Allegheny County, Millennials prefer to give consistently in small amounts as well as volunteer at the organizations they support. They also approach politics differently, rejecting polarized politics and increasingly registering as independents.

Read more
Essential Pittsburgh
3:37 pm
Mon October 28, 2013

How Will History Look at Mayor Luke Ravenstahl?

Credit Deanna Garcia

As Pittsburghers gear up to elect a new mayor, a week from now, Luke Ravenstahl seems to be ramping up his public appearance schedule in an effort to clean up his image.

“It’s like he’s almost trying to spin the last seven years into something that reads better on his epitaph,” says Bob Oltmanns, President of OPR Group, LLC, an independent public relations consultancy.

Read more
Essential Pittsburgh
2:30 pm
Fri October 18, 2013

Madame Presidenta: Why Not Us?

Dilma Rousseff, the first female president of Brazil.
Credit wikipedia

As the granddaughter of a woman who fought for women’s rights in the suffragist movement during the early 20th century, the work that Heather Arnet, CEO of the Women and Girls Foundation, has done is enough to make any grandmother proud.

Her newest project, a documentary titled Madame Presidentá: Why Not Us?, examines the global power of women and specifically, the work of the first female president of Brazil Dilma Rousseff.

The goal for the film, she says, was not to point out how America has not succeeded in putting a woman in the White House. Her aim, as her grandmother so pointedly says in the film, was to figure out “How the hell did they do that?” and look at the eighteen countries worldwide who do have women in power. 

Read more
Essential Pittsburgh
4:52 pm
Tue September 10, 2013

The Crisis in Syria, from a Pittsburgh Perspective

A hospital in Syria after being targeted by a government air strike.
Credit Syrian American Medical Society / Facebook

Dr. Basel Termanini, Syrian American Medical Society Pittsburgh Chapter President, was born and grew up in Aleppo, Syria. Dr. Termanini has lived in Pittsburgh for 16 years and has visited his home country almost every summer with his family.

During his most recent visits, he says security and government corruption have been worse than ever before. Dr. Termanini feels much more comfortable in areas that are not controlled by the Syrian government. One of the biggest problems Syrian citizens face is government issued air strikes at medical facilities.

Read more
Government & Politics
3:30 am
Mon July 22, 2013

New State Supreme Court Justice to Be Sworn In

The newest member of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court is scheduled to be sworn in July 30th.

Gov. Tom Corbett’s nominee, Correale Stevens, was confirmed by the Senate on a 50-0 vote on June 30, returning the court to a four-to-three Republican majority and filling the vacant seat left by the resignation of Justice Joan Orie Melvin.

The 66-year-old judge from Luzerne County will serve through 2016 — the end of Melvin’s term.

Read more
Essential Pittsburgh
6:01 pm
Fri June 7, 2013

Political Commentary on Essential Pittsburgh

A former Pittsburgh police detective who served on Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's security detail has been approached by the FBI about using debit cards tied to an unauthorized account at the Greater Pittsburgh Police Federal Credit Union. Will his testimony open Mayor Ravenstahl to federal investigation?

Pittsburgh City Council President Darlene Harris changed her party affiliation from democratic to independent in April. Many wonder if she's planning to make a play for mayor

And State Representative Jesse White is under investigation for using a fake online identity to bash his political opponents.

Guests: Eric Heyl of the Tribune-Review and Bram Reichbaum of the Pittsburgh Comet discuss these political topics and more.

Essential Pittsburgh
7:34 pm
Fri May 31, 2013

Political Commentary on Essential Pittsburgh

Law professor and political analyst Joe Sabino Mistick and Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist Tony Norman discuss presumptive mayor elect Bill Peduto and his plans for Pittsburgh. Also, with summer recess coming up, it's crunch time for the state legislature. What's the outlook on medicaid expansion?

Essential Pittsburgh
9:00 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

The Hubris of Power

Since his 2008 political scandal, Eliot Spitzer has had a strong media career. What conditions make political corruption so common? And how easily can powerful people rebound from their mistakes?
Credit Wikipedia

  Why do we continue to see people in powerful positions behaving badly? Does absolute power corrupt absolutely? We'll post this question to  Bob Oltmanns, President of OPR Group, LLC, an independent public relations consultancy and Joseph Sabino Mistick an associate professor at Duquesne University School of Law.

Economy & Business
12:40 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

PA Unemployment Numbers Tell Only Half the Story

Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate in January rose to 8.2 percent and is now at its highest point since October 2010 and Democrats in the state are hoping to use the numbers as political fodder.

The numbers were released Friday afternoon. By Monday morning, Senate Democrats were pointing to the report as all the proof they need to show the Corbett administration’s policies have failed to spur investment and, in turn, job creation.

Read more
Essential Pittsburgh
9:30 pm
Thu February 28, 2013

Managing the Media

Bob Oltmanns, President of OPR Group, LLC, an independent public relations consultancy talks about the PR protocol for political figures in crisis situations. What's the best way to overcome an adversarial relationship with the press? And Duquesne University Law Professor Joseph Sabino Mistick, talks about his experiences as a former deputy mayor.

Essential Pittsburgh
10:54 am
Thu February 28, 2013

Gavin Newsom on Citizenville

Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom explores the many ways technology can transform democracy, such as opening government data and letting people create apps to use it wisely.
Credit Gavin Newsom / Facebook

WESA 90.5 reporter Kevin Gavin interviews California Lieutenant Governor and former Mayor of San Francisco Gavin Newsom about his book Citizenville: How to Take the Town Square Digital and Reinvent Government. Newsom discusses how ordinary citizens can use new digital tools to dissolve political gridlock and transform American democracy.