Wednesday, November 17, 2010
The big news out of Pennsylvania House Democrats’ leadership vote wasn’t the selection of a new Minority Leader. Instead, it was the ouster of longtime Appropriations Committee Chair Dwight Evans.
Evans had been the top Democrat on the Appropriations Committee for twenty years.
In that role, the Philadelphia lawmaker decided which projects got funded, and which lost out on state money.
New minority chair Joe Markosek of Monroeville, Allegheny County says Democrats were “disgruntled,” partially by Evans’ lack of transparency.
"I think communications is really the biggest part of folks getting along with each other. In us governing, not only the issues here in the House, but the best thing we can do for the folks of Pennsylvania."
Evans didn’t have much to say after the vote.
"I think it’s just kind of a feeling about the wave, in terms of what happened in general. And I think that, you know, you look at it, you do your best, you make the most of it, and you hope you can move things forward."
Before the vote, Governor Rendell praised Evans.
"During my eight years as governor, no one has understood the budget better than Dwight Evans. No one has been a more positive factor in driving eventual compromise that allowed us to be one of the ten most fiscally stable states in the country, while at the same time advancing a very progressive agenda."
The elections continue an east-to-west power swing.
New Minority Leader Frank Dermody and the Democratic Caucus Chair Dan Frankel are also from Allegheny County (Oakmont and Pittsburgh respectively).
There aren’t any Philadelphia lawmakers in the Democrats’ new leadership team.