Trump takes credit for ‘cracker’ plant

  • Emily Previti

Keystone Crossroads just started rolling out the third season of its “Schooled” podcast. Episode one focuses on a former drug dealer who’s trying to earn his diploma years after dropping out of high school. Upcoming installments follow other public school students struggling with poverty in Philadelphia. Subscribe here.
–Emily Previti, Newsletter Producer/Reporter

‘The greatest treasure on the planet: American energy’

Reid R. Frazier / StateImpact Pennsylvania

President Donald Trump speaking to workers at Shell’s Beaver County ethane cracker August 13, 2019.

  • President Trump visited Beaver County for an official White House event at the Shell Petrochemicals plant under construction in Monaca yesterday. But, as WESA’s Chris Potter reports, the appearance had the feeling of a 2020 campaign rally: “He repeatedly suggested that the fate of the workers before him depended on the outcome of next year’s election – and that they might not have had jobs at all were it not for the last one,” Chris writes. Protestors were out there, too.

  • Trump took credit for bringing the “ethane cracker” plant to the area — even though Shell decided to build it during the 2016 presidential campaign, before he took office, according to Reid Frazier’s live fact-checking on TwitterThe Morning Call’s Laura Olson later posted this wider-ranging fact-check of Trump’s remarks, too.

  • Trump spent some time “reminiscing” about the 2016 campaign, Laura notes. He won Beaver County — handily, by 18 points — last time around. But, his chances for winning Pennsylvania next year all boil down to how good a job he does winning over voters — particularly women — in the Philadelphia suburbs. The Financial Times took a closer look at the importance of Pa.’s “battleground counties” — Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery. (Be sure to click for the cool map embedded in the story.)

Best of the rest

Ed Mahon / PA Post

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf speaks at a news conference on June 28, 2019, in the state Capitol, with preschool children sitting behind him.

  • Gov. Tom Wolf wants to hold charter schools to the same standards as public schools, and is using his executive power to do it. Wolf also has ideas for sanctions for charters that can’t hack it under the forthcoming rules. Avi has more details in this Keystone Crossroads story.

  • State workers paid more than $1 million in fees to a union they didn’t join — and they want their money back. PennLive’s Jan Murphy has the story on the class action lawsuit filed on behalf of more than 2,000 employees in the state Department of Human Services. The case is an outcome of the 2018 U.S. Supreme Court ruling (Janus v. AFSCME) that concluded mandatory union dues for public employees are unconstitutional. Conservative legal groups have been filing similar cases across the country; the PA plaintiffs are represented by the Liberty Justice Center and the National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation.

  • Correction from yesterday’s edition: Keira McGuire is a Transforming Health host and producer, and Alan Yu wrote this story about behavior and mental health treatment for children in military families. 


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