Worst of Harrisburg Wagner Confirms His Only Priority is His Own Political Ambition

PENNSYLVANIA – This evening, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported that Scott Wagner is resigning his Senate seat in order to pursue his own political ambition a week after he skipped critical floor votes designed to protect children from predators, domestic abusers, and deadly chemicals in order to attend a corporate policy summit hosted by the Republican Governors Association designed to benefit big business.

“Scott Wagner’s decision to resign one week after skipping crucial votes to protect children in order to attend a political corporate policy summit, and one month before the budget deadline, proves that he is the very worst of Harrisburg,” said Beth Melena, communications director for the Wolf campaign. “Scott Wagner is only interested in furthering his own political ambitions, but his resignation does not erase his long record of supporting education cuts for our children, rolling back health care for hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians, and throwing seniors out of their nursing homes.”

BACKGROUND

May 2018: Wagner Was Confirmed To Attend RGA Corporate Policy Summit. According to an event attendee memo, Wagner was listed as a confirmed nominee to attend the Republican Governors Association 2018 New York Corporate Policy Summit from Tuesday, May 22 to Wednesday, May 23, 2018. [RGA Memorandum, 5/17/18]

Wagner Did Not Vote To Keep 17,000 Sex Offenders On Pennsylvania’s Registry. In May 2018, Wagner did not vote on final passage of legislation to correct problems with sex offender reporting requirements identified by the Supreme Court to keep 17,000 sex offenders on Pennsylvania’s registry. The Meadville Tribune reported in December 2017, “The state House voted unanimously on changes to the state’s sexual offender registry intended to correct problems the state Supreme Court identified as unconstitutional. If left uncorrected, more than three-quarters of the more than 20,000 people now registering on the Megan’s Law list might need to be removed, according to data provided by the Pennsylvania State Police. The Supreme Court determined that some of the reporting requirements included in the 2012 update to the state’s Megan’s Law were punitive in nature, so they couldn’t be applied retroactively to cover sex offenders convicted earlier than that. ‘This legislation was expedited because it is such a critical issue. With the implementation of this legislation, up to 17,000 sexual offenders would not be removed from the state sexual offender registry,’ said state Rep. Ron Marsico … The changes in House Bill 1952 are intended to correct the problems identified by the Supreme Court by making the reporting requirements ‘less onerous,’ said Richard W. Long, executive director of the Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association, one of many legal and law enforcement groups included in the effort to update the law to pass judicial muster.” House Bill 1952 passed unanimously in the Senate with Wagner and one other senator not voting. [HB 1952, RCS# 500, 5/22/18]

Wagner Did Not Vote To Make An Act Of Domestic Violence In The Presence Of Children A Separate Crime. In May 2018, Wagner did not vote on final passage of legislation that would create an offense for an act of domestic violence in front of children. According to the bill’s sponsor Sen. Bob Mensch, “There is a devastating impact on children who witness domestic violence … The data is clear that when a perpetrator commits an act of violence in front of a child, there is more than one victim – the child suffers many of the same consequences as if he or she had been the direct victim. Our Crimes Code should recognize this painful reality by making it a separate crime.” Senate Bill 1092 passed the Senate unanimously with Wagner as the only senator not voting. [SB 1092, Co-sponsorship Memorandum, 3/19/18, RCS# 505, 5/23/18]

Wagner Did Not Vote To Require Carbon Monoxide Detectors In Child Care Facilities. In May 2018, Wagner did not vote on final passage of legislation to require carbon monoxide detectors in child care facilities including boarding homes for children, child care centers, and nursery schools that are licensed and regulated by the Commonwealth. According to the bill’s sponsor Sen. Wayne Fontana, “Carbon monoxide deaths are entirely preventable there is no reason why these facilities should not have this alert system to warn individuals and possibly avoid hundreds of unnecessary deaths.” Senate Bill 439 passed the Senate unanimously with Wagner as the only senator not voting. [SB 429, Co-Sponsorship Memorandum, 12/08/16, RCS# 503, 5/23/18]

CONTACT: Beth Melena, beth@wolfforpa.com

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