Will Kane run for governor? Fundraiser renews speculation
HARRISBURG — An upcoming fundraiser for Attorney General Kathleen Kane renews speculation about whether she intends to seek the Democratic nomination for governor next year.
Tickets for the Nov. 18 event at Stocks on 2nd, a restaurant a short walk from the state Capitol, range from $500 for an individual to $10,000 for a fundraising chair.
Kane did not respond to requests for comment.
Since taking office in January, Kane has downplayed suggestions that she will enter a crowded field from which the May Democratic primary winner will emerge to take on Republican Gov. Tom Corbett next November.
Corbett, who announced his candidacy this week, is the presumptive GOP nominee.
“She has the profile where she could be a late entrant into the race and immediately become a top-tier candidate,” said Larry Ceisler, a Philadelphia public relations consultant. “I just think (Kane's advisers) want to be ready” if the political landscape shifts.
Kane pledged during last year's campaign to serve a four-year term as the state's top law enforcement official. Political strategists suggest Corbett's perceived vulnerability, based on public opinion polls, might prompt her to re-evaluate running for governor.
The Democratic primary has attracted eight potential candidates, including U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz and state Treasurer Rob McCord, both of Montgomery County, and former Revenue Secretary Tom Wolf of York County.
“Kane is the most popular Democrat in Pennsylvania, with the greatest name recognition. She would be foolish not to be testing the waters,” said Wesley McDonald, a political science professor at Elizabethtown College. “Unless she stumbles badly politically, I believe she is the presumptive front-runner if she decides to run, and probably the next governor.”
Kane was the top vote-getter in 2012, with more than 3.1 million — more votes than were cast for President Obama. She became the first woman and first Democrat to win as attorney general since the position became an elective office in 1980.
“I doubt she will run,” said Moe Coleman, director emeritus of the University of Pittsburgh's Institute of Politics. Overcoming her pledge not to run would be a significant hurdle, he said.
By raising campaign money, Kane potentially could hurt other Democrats' efforts to finance campaigns, Coleman said.
Jumping in with less than a year in office might be viewed as “opportunistic,” said Christopher Borick, a political science professor at Muhlenberg College. It would give opponents an issue to use against her, he said.
Steve Peterson, a political science professor at Penn State University's Harrisburg campus, said Kane may be bolstering her campaign account so she can donate to candidates and gain cache with the party. “I take her at her word,” he said.
Kane challenged Corbett even before taking office, vowing to independently investigate how Corbett, as attorney general, handled the prosecution of serial child molester Jerry Sandusky, a former Penn State assistant football coach. She pledged to determine why it took almost three years to arrest Sandusky, convicted last year of abusing 10 boys.
Critics contend that Corbett delayed Sandusky's arrest until 11 months after the governor's race was decided in November 2010. Corbett denied he told anyone to slow the probe for political reasons.
Brad Bumsted is Trib Total Media's state Capitol reporter.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Rossi: Rutherford falling apart, too
- Missing Sewickley teen found safe
- Marathoner hit by vehicle in Murrysville recuperates
- Steelers veteran cornerback Ike Taylor announces retirement
- Butler County new home sales surge in 2014
- Mt. Pleasant Township home destroyed by fire
- 4 seek 3 nominations for Southwest Greensburg council
- LaBar: WWE bans finishing move of top star
- Sanchez odd man out with Pirates recalling Stewart
- Heroin overdoses kill two in Pittsburgh area; others revived with Narcan
- Mt. Lebanon police checking lead on Tenn. teen arrested in school threats