If truth in advertising is even a small part of winning the battle, hands-down the winner is Tom Corbett. Thanks to Pittsburgh radio station WDUQ for fact-checking the most recent crop of campaign ads in the Pennsylvania Gubernatorial race.
To place things in a little more perspective, WDUQ’s contention about the energy tax having to do with natural gas extraction, not cap and trade – that is the “close to home” issue for Pennsylvanians, since there are many natural gas wells across the countryside. Beyond creating higher utility bills for residents in general, it has the potential to decrease the amount of money paid to property owners by natural gas providers for use of their land. Currently, land owners can end up with stipends not only for natural gas pockets beneath their property, but also for lines crossing through.
As for the Dan Onorato ad, WDUQ points out that none of the cuts that Onorato claims that Corbett will cause, or is “for” have ever been mentioned by Corbett in any context. While the Corbett ad is easy to find on his website, Onorato’s does not appear to be available on YouTube, and isn’t linked to on his website. It is understandable why. It is a blatant smear. At least his campaign was smart enough to preface the fallacy with a comment stating that these are cuts that “could” happen if Corbett becomes Governor. When a candidate has a “tax and spend” history, the only option when engaged in debate over budget and spending is to scare large blocs of voters with claims that anyone that suggest fiscal responsibility will cut programs for those voters first. The fact is that there is plenty of fat in the Commonwealth budget that could be trimmed before anyone would start talking about cutting programs benefiting seniors, especially considering the fact that our state lottery subsidizes many of those programs in the first place. That said, to any Pennsylvanians out there, by all means go out and buy some lottery tickets, show them to your senior citizen neighbors, and remind them that those sales help keep their programs alive – not Dan Onorato.