Smart Talk

Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment.  Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.

Listen to Smart Talk live online from 9-10 a.m. weekdays and at 7 p.m. (Repeat of 9 a.m. program)

Host: Scott LaMar

Smart Talk: Analysis of gubernatorial debate; PA hate crime law expansion?

Written by Scott LaMar, Smart Talk Host/Executive Producer | Sep 22, 2014 2:01 PM

Gov. Tom Corbett and Tom Wolf

What to look for on Smart Talk Tuesday, September 23, 2014:

The first face-to-face debate of the 2014 race for governor in Pennsylvania is taking place Monday night in Hershey.

With Republican incumbent Tom Corbett trailing his Democratic opponent Tom Wolf in the polls, Corbett probably needs an outstanding performance to mount a comeback.

Were there any surprises and on what issues did the candidates differ the most?

On Tuesday's Smart Talk, Muhlenburg College political science professor and pollster Dr. Christopher Borick and WITF's Capitol Bureau Chief Mary Wilson appear to provide analysis of the Corbett-Wolf meeting.

WITF's Election 2014 coverage is supported by the Harrisburg law firm of Saul Ewing LLP.

Also, an assault on two gay men in Philadelphia earlier this month that police believe was motivated by the victims' sexual orientation has prompted several Pennsylvania lawmakers to push for expansion of the state's hate crimes law.

Legislation is being considered in both the senate and house that would extend protection under the state's ethnic intimidation law to include ancestry, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, gender, or gender identity.

Democratic State Senator Larry Farnese appears on Tuesday's Smart Talk to discuss why he believes the law should be changed.

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  • Radio Smart Talk img 2014-09-23 08:50

    Teri in Chambersburg emails:

    Why is a bill needed to specify 'hate crimes'? Isn't the beating a crime? Regardless of the motive of the attacker? What happened was heinous and wrong. How would the prosecution differ if attack was done b/c victims were gay? I see it as 'wrong is wrong'...

  • John D. Laskowski img 2014-09-23 13:07

    Senator Farnese's assertion that Pennsylvania is currently 49th in job creation comes from data from a liberal leaning pro- union source that actually lists PA at 47th. ( Keyword PA 49th on job creation ). His suggestion that this is due to the Corbett administration is a political ploy which does not consider either the lag time of the affect of economic change nor the cause and effect of all mitigating factors. For instance, PA has lost over 3000 coal industry jobs due to Obama's EPA regulations. Many states have surpassed PA on job creation because of the negative aspects of gas prices, fertilizer prices for agriculture in a state with a high national agriculture jobs basis, and all the other conditions that Democrat's high taxes and government control of industry places on the individual. Obama's thwarting of a chance to have a prosperous oil and gas industry( the Democratic way ) to combat the Middle East OPEC strangulation on the US is crucial to an economic turnaround. By the time the meager profits of many businesses trickle down to the common individual it is hard to find a job in this PA economy. Many other states are blessed with a younger employable citizens,more technology and manufacturing industries due to climate, location and infrastructure surpassing ours.
    As a biologist I am fully aware of the concept of lag time. As in nature it holds true in economics. One must look at the cause and effect aspects of the economic picture.
    For Senator Farnese to place the blame on Corbett for the last three years of what Obama and Rendell did in their Democratic prior time in disingenuous to say the least. It is easy for Senator Farnese to sucker punch Corbett prior to the election. Are you ready for the massive tax increases that Wolf will surely want to support his union buddies ?