HARRISBURG – Rep. Mark Keller (R-Perry/Cumberland) today joined a growing number of his House colleagues in criticizing Gov. Tom Wolf’s decision to borrow funds without legislative approval to assist county governments with the purchase of new voting systems.
The governor announced his plan on Tuesday, days after vetoing Senate Bill 48, a bipartisan proposal from the General Assembly that provided the same amount of county funding and made some election reforms, including the ending of straight-party ticket voting.
Keller issued the following statement regarding Wolf’s actions:
“We believe the governor does not have the legal authority to bypass the General Assembly and unilaterally borrow $90 million to help counties pay for mandated voting system upgrades. By coming up with this questionable borrowing plan, he appears to be bowing to political pressure to preserve the straight-party voting option.
“When he vetoed our proposal, the governor said eliminating straight-party voting would increase waiting times at the polls and discourage voter participation. But his reasoning rings hollow. In reality, the governor has put politics ahead of the citizens’ right to vote based on their conscience.
“Gov. Wolf can’t have his cake and eat it too. Senate Bill 48
was a bipartisan piece of legislation that would have provided the necessary county funding and made changes to improve our elections.
“The executive decision makes it clear. The governor has chosen to serve his party rather than the people of Pennsylvania who elected him.”
Representative Mark Keller
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Andy Briggs