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Monday, April 14, 2014

Gertrude Stein Political Club announces Primary endorsements

Posted By on Mon, Apr 14, 2014 at 9:07 AM

Although happy with the LGBT and women’s rights positions of the four Democratic candidates running for governor, the Gertrude Stein Political Club chose two clear favorites in local state house races when they announced their Primary election endorsements Sunday.

In a release, in fact, the club told voters, “If you want to make a difference. The one race that most clearly pits the good versus the cruddy aspects of the PA Democratic Party is playing out in PA House District 36.” That race features two incumbents fighting for reelection in a district that was a victim of redistricting. Progressive Erin Molchany is the club’s choice in a race they label as “the ultimate grudge match” against long-time incumbent Harry Readshaw.

“Tell your friends, help phonebank, support her in whatever way you can — she's excellent,” according to the press release. “Her opponent Readshaw's positions are consistently hateful, and he's a pill.”

The organization also endorsed Thomas Michalow over incumbent Adam Ravenstahl. According to the release, “While not quite as stark a contrast, the Democratic primary for PA House District 20 showcases thoughtful endorsed candidate Thomas Michalow (against the lackluster "other Ravenstahl"). Please put the word out.”

In the race for the Democratic Nominee for governor, the club says any choice between Rob McCord, Katie McGinty, Allyson Schwartz, and Tom Wolfe has the blessing of the organization. According to the release, “Enjoy voting for any of these fine people in the primary, and know that you can feel good supporting any one of them in the fall!”

The full release, which also includes endorsements for Lt. Governor and state committee, can be found after the jump.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 13, 2014

PITTSBURGH, Pa. At its regularly scheduled April meeting, the Gertrude Stein Political Club of Greater Pittsburgh (GSPCGP) endorsed a slate of candidates for the Primary Election to be held on May 20, 2014. A multi-partisan organization interested in candidates supporting and furthering LGBT and women’s rights, freedoms, and liberties, the GSPCGP generally solicits input from all candidates scheduled to appear on the ballot in the greater Pittsburgh area.

The members emphasize the importance of citizens seeking and learning information about elections, about each candidate, and about getting out and voting in the coming election.

Primary Election Endorsements

Governor: An Unprecedented Crop. For the first time ever, we give all four Democratic candidates a joint endorsement for the primary. All are highly intelligent, principled, skilled, and completely solid on our issues. We have endorsed Rob McCord throughout his career — and he has never failed to fight for us. As Treasurer, he has skewered the cost of Corbett's folly in fighting against marriage equality, and has weighed in on the economic benefit of passing an anti-discrimination bill. Allyson Schwartz is one of the true heroes in the rocky history of PA reproductive rights. As State Senator she was an early and vocal opponent of DOMA, and she carries a 100% legislative rating from the HRC for her U.S. Congressional legislative record. What Allyson has been to women's issues, Katie McGinty has been to the environment, with posts at the White House during the Clinton years, and as Secretary of the PA DEP under Ed Rendell. She expresses her opposition to discrimination in passionate terms. She and Schwartz share the greatest national-level experience. Tom Wolf is a job creator par-excellence, with an exemplary record of making his flourishing, well-paying company an LGBT-friendly workplace. He has a strong and vocal anti-discrimination platform — and a strong "war chest." Enjoy voting for any of these fine people in the primary, and know that you can feel good supporting any one of them in the fall!

Lieutenant Governor. Two candidates are brilliant on our issues. One of them, Mike Stack, receives our endorsement. He has a strong organization, strong ties to our community, and has been instrumental to moving bits of progressive legislation through a government largely controlled by people who demonize our community. The other, Harrisburg councilman Brad Koplinski (honorable mention), is fiercely bright, a fighter for the underdog, and has been making up in shoe leather what he lacks in funding. We like him a lot, but feel it is important to get the entire community behind the strongest LGBT-supportive candidate, under the circumstances.

If you want to make a difference. The one race that most clearly pits the good versus the cruddy aspects of the PA Democratic Party is playing out in PA House District 36. Two districts have been gerrymandered into one. Two very different incumbents face off in the ultimate grudge match. Our candidate: Erin Molchany. Tell your friends, help phonebank, support her in whatever way you can — she's excellent. Her opponent Readshaw's positions are consistently hateful, and he's a pill.

While not quite as stark a contrast, the Democratic primary for PA House District 20 showcases thoughtful endorsed candidate Thomas Michalow (against the lackluster "other Ravenstahl"). Please put the word out.

A shout out: Democratic State Committee is an unpaid, thankless task. The following endorsees are dedicated, and strong on our issues. Robert Vincent Frank (42nd), Barbara Ernsberger, Barbara Daly Danko, Marvin Liebowitz, Jessel Costa, Jessica McCurdy (43rd).

Note: Please do not assume that we oppose a candidate if their race is not mentioned. Incumbent past endorsees Dan Frankel (D) PA House District 23, Dan Miller (D) PA House District 42, and Edward Gainey (D) PA House District 24 did not return questionnaires, but have continued to be solid on our issues. Also, third party candidates are not on the ballot until November.

As a multipartisan group, we invite candidates of all parties to respond.

The Gertrude Stein Political Club of Greater Pittsburgh interviews candidates and raises funds to produce two brochures and run two elections ads a year. We have a multi-decade history of educating candidates on our issues. Anyone interested in joining or helping the GSPCGP should please send an email to gspcgp@gmail.com.

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