A government reform advocate says a grand jury report on legislative corruption in Harrisburg is on target. Democracy Rising PA Founder Tim Potts says he agrees with the finding that the leaders have too much power and they use it to discourage reform.
“When you get a legislator that’s too reform-minded they will say, ‘Well, you know we can find somebody to run against you in the primary.’ They threaten their political existence.”
He says the report recommended making the legislature part-time, and that’s what it was for 200 years.
“The 1970’s was when we morphed into this full-time legislature, and most other states manage to get by with a part-time legislature. I’m not advocating for or against it right now. What I’m saying is we need to debate this thoroughly at a constitution convention and let ordinary citizens make their own recommendation about what we should do with this.”
Potts says it’s been three years since the Bonusgate scandal and five years since lawmakers voted themselves a pay raise, and no real reform has taken place. He says they changed a few rules to make the process more open, but those rules can be suspended at any time. He appeared Wednesday on the WNPV talk program Comment Please by Univest.