Senator Jake Corman is the President Pro Tempore of the Pennsylvania State Senate. He is now presenting himself as a proponent of a full “investigation” of the 2020 election in Pennsylvania and seeking to cast himself as the champion of those who think Biden stole the election in the state. Political pundits across the nation describe Corman as having bowed to the pressure of the MAGA movement and abandoned his prior opposition to any review of the election. We are assured the people have won, and that Harrisburg is listening now.
That’s all very comforting. It would be even more comforting if it were true.
It is not.
Corman has not changed anything about the way he operates. He has not changed his views on anything. His “investigation” into the 2020 election is going nowhere. It is theater, which will accomplish nothing but allow him to claim that he is fighting on behalf of his constituents and taking on the “establishment”.
A look at the history of the election fraud debate in Pennsylvania tells you everything you need to know. Mail-in voting and the wholesale abuse of the electoral process it brought with it were the product of a specific piece of legislation. The bill in question, Act 77, was passed by both houses of a Republican-controlled legislature. It was pushed through that legislature aggressively by the Republican leadership.
Republican leadership pushed Act 77 as part of a political deal with Democrats in the legislature. In exchange for mail-in voting, which Democrats wanted, Republicans got Democratic agreement to end straight-party voting in the state. This meant that voters would no longer be able to simply vote for all Republicans or all Democrats. They would have to decide office by office for whom to vote.
Republican leaders wanted an end to straight-party voting, because they were convinced that Donald Trump would be a drag on down-ballot races. State GOP leaders, Corman among them, wanted to cut away the sitting Republican President. They wanted to jettison Trump. They wanted it so bad they gave the Democrats mail-in voting and destroyed the system of in-person voting that had been in place since the birth of the republic.
In Pennsylvania, the base of the Republican Party is fighting mad and fully on board with the MAGA agenda. They are fed up with a system in which a handful of wealthy individuals and the politicians they own run the show while the people, the ones who fight the wars and do the work, are expected to sit quietly and speak when spoken to.
Jake Corman and his ilk are on the other side of this fight. They don’t want a change. They like things just the way they are. Donald Trump threatened the status quo. The continuation of his movement means the possibility of real change and real reform. They don’t want that. They want to roll back the odometer and return to pre-2016 politics, backroom deals, and business as usual.
Corman’s actions since taking the lead on the alleged investigation of the 2020 election have shown clearly that nothing has changed. Senator Doug Mastriano, who has been aggressively calling for an audit of the 2020 election for many months was judged unlikely to “play the game” and stay in line. He was pushed aside. His staff members were taken away from him. He was rendered incapable of continuing to even attempt to issue subpoenas.
Then Corman took the reins, allowing him to claim to be the people’s man while simultaneously being able to control how far things would go and guarantee nothing meaningful would happen. When Mastriano refused to bow out completely and take the hint, he was informed he would no longer be allowed to attend GOP caucus meetings. He would be cut out entirely. Leadership would continue to be able to meet and conspire behind closed doors without fear of anyone telling the people the truth.
Next, Corman’s lapdog Senator Chris Dush had his committee issue subpoenas for a bunch of information to which he already had access. This did not include the actual ballots from the election without which no true audit can be conducted. Nothing new will be learned as a result of the issuance of these subpoenas.
The next scene in this ridiculous theatrical production will involve Dush, Corman and the usual suspects claiming to have studied the information provided and reached a number of very sage conclusions. Meaningless legislation will follow. Nothing of consequence will result, but everyone will assure you they have done something profound, and that “reforms” have been made. You will be expected to accept this puffery, proclaim yourself satisfied and go back to watching the game on television.
Nothing has changed in Harrisburg. As it stands now nothing is going to change. The only way to fix that is to challenge the GOP leadership in the primary election and send this cast of characters into early retirement.
You want a different result? Elect different people.