Difference between revisions of "Tom Corbett"

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:: ''See also: [[Pennsylvania gubernatorial election, 2010]]''
:: ''See also: [[Pennsylvania gubernatorial election, 2010]]''
Corbett announced his candidacy for the [[Republican]] party nomination for [[Governor of Pennsylvania|Governor of Pennsylvania]] on September 15, 2009.<ref>[http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09258/998105-178.stm ''Pittsburgh Post-Gazette'' "Corbett announces he will run for governor in 2010" 15 Sept. 2009]</ref>  A '''Quinnipiac''' poll taken in December 2009 indicated that he led United States Representative [[Jim Gerlach]] for the [[Republican]] nomination with 38 percent favoring his candidacy. Furthermore, the polling data at that time suggested that he held an edge over the three top-polling Democrats in hypothetical head-to-head match-ups.<ref>[http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/harrisburg_politics/Poll_finds_Attorney_General_Tom_Corbett_holds_wide_lead_in_governors_race.html ''Philly.com'' "Poll finds Attorney General Tom Corbett holds wide lead in governor's race" 17 Dec. 2009]</ref>
Corbett announced his candidacy for the [[Republican]] party nomination for [[Governor of Pennsylvania|Governor of Pennsylvania]] on September 15, 2009.<ref>[http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09258/998105-178.stm ''Pittsburgh Post-Gazette'' "Corbett announces he will run for governor in 2010" 15 Sept. 2009]</ref>  A '''Quinnipiac''' poll taken in December 2009 indicated that he led United States Representative [[Jim Gerlach]] for the [[Republican]] nomination with 38 percent favoring his candidacy. Furthermore, the polling data at that time suggested that he held an edge over the three top-polling Democrats in hypothetical head-to-head match-ups.<ref>[http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/harrisburg_politics/Poll_finds_Attorney_General_Tom_Corbett_holds_wide_lead_in_governors_race.html ''Philly.com'', "Poll finds Attorney General Tom Corbett holds wide lead in governor's race" 17 Dec. 2009]</ref>
*'''2010 General Election'''
*'''2010 General Election'''

Revision as of 07:56, 2 May 2014

Tom Corbett
Tom Corbett 2013.jpg
Governor of Pennsylvania
In office
2011 - Present
Term ends
Years in position 4
PredecessorEd Rendell (D)
Base salary$187,256
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 2, 2010
First electedNovember 2, 2010
Next general November 4, 2014
Campaign $$41,719,301
Term limits2 consecutive terms
Prior offices
Pennsylvania Attorney General
1995-1997, 2004-2010
U.S. Attorney, Western District of Pennsylvania
Bachelor'sLebanon Valley College
J.D.St. Mary's University School (1975)
Military service
Service/branchCaptain, Pennsylvania Army National Guard
Years of service1971-1984
Date of birthJune 17, 1949
Place of birthPhiladelphia, Pennsylvania
ReligionRoman Catholic
Office website
Personal website
Campaign website
Tom Corbett (born 1949) is the 46th and current Governor of Pennsylvania. A Republican, he was elected on November 2, 2010, easily defeating Democrat Dan Onorato.[1]

At the time of his election, Corbett was serving as Attorney General of Pennsylvania. He vacated the position, which he held since 2004, upon assuming the governorship in January 2011. Corbett previously served as attorney general from 1995-1997. He was appointed interim attorney general by then-Governor Tom Ridge to finish the unexpired term of Ernie Preate, who resigned after being convicted of mail fraud.[1]

Corbett lists his priorities as governor as "A Job for Every Pennsylvanian that Wants One," "A Stable Financial Future for Pennsylvania," "Investing in Education," "A Trained and Educated Workforce," and "The Budget."[2]

An analysis of Republican governors by Nate Silver of the New York Times in April 2013 ranked Corbett as the 19th most conservative governor in the country.[3]

Corbett is running for re-election in 2014.[4][5] Based on approval ratings, The New York Times rated Corbett as the 5th most vulnerable governor in 2014.[6]


Corbett has a bachelor's degree from Lebanon Valley College, and a law degree from St. Mary's University School in San Antonio, Texas. He served in the Pennsylvania Army National Guard 28th Infantry Division from 1971 to 1984. During that time, he was able to achieve the rank of captain. Shortly after graduating from law school in 1975, he worked as an assistant district attorney in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. Corbett was chosen in 1980 to act as an assistant to the United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, a role he maintained for three years.[1]

After returning to Pennsylvania and private practice, he entered the state's political stage for the first time, winning the election for township commissioner in Shaler Township, Pennsylvania. His skills and experience within the legal profession were recognized nationally when President George H. W. Bush appointed him United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania in 1988; he remained there until midway through Bill Clinton's first year in office.

Following his resignation, he again returned to private practice in Pennsylvania, while simultaneously serving as an advisor to Tom Ridge's successful 1994 gubernatorial campaign. In the wake of Ridge's victory, Corbett worked on a number of state commissions, including the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Deliquency where he served as chairman. When he was appointed by Ridge to fill the vacancy of state Attorney General left behind by the scandal-plagued Ernest Preate in 1995, he was required by the State Senate Democrats to sign a pledge that said he would not run for re-election the next year, a common practice in the state of Pennsylvania for appointments to elected offices.[1]

Leaving office in 1997, he returned to the private sector by starting his own practice, Thomas Corbett and Associates, one he kept in operation until 2004. That same year he served as the general counsel for Waste Management.[1]. Corbett's professional background also includes teaching civics and history in Pine Grove Area High School in Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania.[1]


  • Bachelor's degree, Lebanon Valley College
  • Juris Doctorate degree, St. Mary's University Law School (1975)

Political career

Governor of Pennsylvania (2011-present)

Corbett was elected the 46th governor of Pennsylvania in the November 2, 2010 general election. He was sworn into office on January 18th, 2011.[1]

Approval ratings

Several polls were conducted in the months leading up to the 2012 general election to gauge the people of Pennsylvania's opinion of their governor. The thousands of likely Pennsylvania voters who were surveyed between mid to late September reported an average 32% approval rating, while approximately 45% of respondents disapproved of the job he was doing.[7] His job performance ratings continued to decline through early 2013. An April survey from Quinnipiac University Polling Institute showed Corbett's approval rating hovering at 47 percent approval to 38 percent disapproval, with a negative 29 to 43 percent favorability rating-- marking the fourth consecutive month of negative scores for the first term governor.[8] The poll, released over a year before the governor goes up for re-election, also showed him losing by at least nine percentage points in hypothetical match-ups against three Democratic opponents. Most notably, the poll indicates that Corbett will find a formidable challenger in U.S. Rep Allyson Schwartz, who already declared her candidacy at the time the survey was conducted; she looked especially threatening vis a vis Corbett's dismal popularity among female respondents, 54-27 percent of whom expressed opposition to Corbett’s re-election, a margin of 2 to 1.[9]

Job Approval Rating of Governor Tom Corbett
Poll Approve DisapproveDon't Know or NAMargin of ErrorSample Size
Muhlenberg College PA Poll
(September 10-16, 2012)
Quinnipiac University Poll
(September 18-24, 2012)
Franklin and Marshall Poll
(September 18-23, 2012)
Quinnipiac University
(April 19-24, 2013)
AVERAGES 33.5% 45.5% 21.25% +/-3.4 921.75
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

Job creation ranking

In a June 2013 analysis by The Business Journals, which ranked 45 of the country's 50 governors by their job creation records, Corbett was ranked number 41. The five governors omitted from the analysis all assumed office in 2013. The ranking was based on a comparison of the annual private sector growth rate in all 50 states using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.[10][11]

Liquor privatization

In November of 2010, Corbett voiced his support for the privatization of the 61 state liquor stores before he assumed his position as Governor of Pennsylvania. He joined State House Republicans, including the new Majority Leader, Mike Turzai.[12]

On January 30, 2013, Corbett introduced a proposal to privatize the state-owned liquor stores and use the revenue to increasing funding for education. The governor argued that "the selling of alcohol is not a core responsibility of government, but education is." The governor's plan would see the state's liquor and wine stores auctioned off, while big box stores, supermarkets, and convenience stores would be able to sell limited quantities of beer and, in the case of big box stores and supermarkets, wine. Restaurants, already able to sell beer, would be able to sell customers up to six bottles of wine, while retail beer distributors could obtain licenses to sell beer, wine, and liquor, instead of only beer. The auctions and licensing fees would generate an estimated $1 billion over four years. Under Corbett's plan, these funds would be distributed to school districts using a formula based on their student enrollment and income level. The block grants would fund "school safety; early learning; science, technology, engineering and mathematics course programming; and 'individual learning.'"[13] On March 5, 2013, House Majority Leader Turzai introduced Corbett's plan as House Bill 790, and the bill was referred to the Liquor Control Committee.[14][15] After HB 790 was reported to the House by the Liquor Control Committee on March 18 and then by the Appropriations Committee on March 21, the House passed the bill 105-90 on March 21.[15] This amended version of the bill would privatize the wholesaling of wine and spirits within one year, require the government liquor stores in any given county to shut down within six months after the number of private stores double those of the government, and provide education credits and civil service hiring preferences to employees of the government stores.[16]

Two leading Republicans, Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi, supported increasing consumer choice but remained unconvinced that the government stores needed to be auctioned off. State Representative John Taylor (R) proposed an alternative plan which would introduce more competition into the liquor market but allow a reduced number of the state stores to continue to operate. The United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1776, which represents workers at the government liquor stores, also opposed privatization, while supporters of increased education funding remained divided by the plan.[17][14] The Commonwealth Foundation, a pro-market think tank, commended Corbett for his privatization proposal. The Foundation noted in a January 30, 2013, press release that Pennsylvania loses tax revenue when residents go to other states to buy alcohol and that the government had spent $10 million to establish its own wine brand to compete against privately owned wineries. Polls showed most Pennsylvanians favored privatization.[18]

Following its House passage, HB 790 was sent to the Senate. Pileggi reasserted his emphasis on "looking for ways to increase convenience, and selection at a competitive price" rather than privatization. He indicated that bill would be changed before passage in the Senate. Corbett refused to publicly comment on how he would approach negotiations with the Senate but reaffirmed his support for privatization.[19]

2013-14 Budget

Corbett delivered his 2013-14 budget to the Pennsylvania Legislature in early February 2013. Nathan Benefield of the pro-market Commonwealth Foundation commended Corbett for his "fiscal restraint" and asserted that Corbett's leadership had helped revive Pennsylvania's economy, which created jobs at a rate 17 times higher than that of the other 49 states. Benefield also supported Corbett's proposal to eliminate the state's corporate tax.[20] Additional analysis by the Commonwealth Foundation showed that his proposed $67.6 billion in total spending would be the highest level ever for Pennsylvania without adjusting for inflation and the second-highest, behind only 2010-11, after taking inflation into account.[21]

Presidential preference


See also: Endorsements by state officials of presidential candidates in the 2012 election

Tom Corbett endorsed Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential election. [22]

Sandusky scandal

When Corbett left the attorney general's office in 2011, he appointed Linda Kelly (R) to serve as his replacement for the remainder of his term, ending in January 2013. When Kelly was sworn in on May 24, 2011, she assumed leadership of the state's high profile investigation into former Penn State football coach and eventual convicted sex-offender Jerry Sandusky, who was charged with 45 counts of sexual abuse committed between 1994 and 2009.

Originating during Corbett's rein as attorney general in late 2009, the case's disturbing revelations about Sandusky reverberated far beyond the boundaries of Penn State's campus, inciting an onslaught of emotional pleas to the state to deliver swift justice, so to begin the healing process. Despite the mounting pressure from the public and press to advance the investigation to trial as quickly as possible, the Pennsylvania attorney general's office, which oversaw the case, proceeded with caution instead of urgency. The case spent two years in controversial gestation under Corbett - and then Kelly - before charges were brought against Sandusky in November, 2011.[23] After a fraught stage of suspended grief, Sandusky's victims and betrayed fans got the pace they wanted, with the case going from grand jury presentment to trial in a short seven months.[24]

On June 22, 2012, a jury convicted Sandusky of 45 out of the 48 counts of sex abuse for which he was indicted, including 25 felonies and 20 misdemeanors. After the verdict was delivered, Kelly said she was confident Sandusky received a fair trial, notwithstanding the hurried pace of the proceedings, and the defense's request for a mistrial following the prosecution's exposure of an erroneously incriminating interview Sandusky did with Bob Costas - "The commonwealth expects to prevail on any appeal, and as far as the timing, the judge made it clear from the beginning to all the parties that he intended to move this case along quickly," Kelly said on CNN.[25] Defense Attorney Joe Amendola tried to withdraw from the case on account of the trial's unusually expeditious time-frame. Echoing Kelly's defense of the trial's sprint to conclusion, and the dismissed mistrial, Corbett said that he expected these issues to manifest in future appeals, but ultimately, the jury's decision was tipped by the "compelling testimony of these now young men who were young boys who suffered at the hands of this pedophile.”[26] Despite Corbett's repeated assurances that the attorney general's office did everything properly in handling the case, suspicions remained about his performance overseeing the case as attorney general, and his continued involvement as governor. Whether or not the handing of the case should be reviewed further was a dominant issue in the 2012 attorney general race. Both major party candidates, David Freed (R) and Kathleen Kane (D), said they would review the office's, and Corbett's, performance leading the Sandusky investigation if elected.

Do you think the way the Sandusky case was investigated by Governor Tom Corbett when he was Attorney General should be reviewed further, or not?
Poll Yes NoDo not knowMargin of ErrorSample Size
Franklin and Marshall Poll
(September 18-23, 2012)
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

How would you rate the way Governor Corbett handled the Sandusky case when he was Attorney General?
Poll Good to excellent job Fair jobPoor jobDo not knowMargin of ErrorSample Size
Franklin and Marshall Poll
(September 18-23, 2012)
Note: The polls above may not reflect all polls that have been conducted in this race. Those displayed are a random sampling chosen by Ballotpedia staff. If you would like to nominate another poll for inclusion in the table, send an email to editor@ballotpedia.org.

Forced pooling

On the day Corbett took the oath of office as governor, critics gathered on the front steps. They were opposing the threat of forced natural gas pooling laws, which they claimed would be on the agenda in the upcoming legislative session. Gene Stilp, a local political activist who organized the protest, said the legalization of forced pooling would be a violation of constitutionally guaranteed property rights.

"Sure, they'll give you something for it, some kind of monetary compensation, but the idea here is that it is a diminution of our constitutional rights to property," said Stilp. "It lays open the property rights of all Pennsylvanians." Stilp equated forced pooling to "subterranean eminent domain." Range Resources is one of the largest gas companies operating in Pennsylvania and one of the companies people like Stilp are protesting. Matt Pitzarella, spokesperson for Range Resources, said the pooling can benefit property owners by allowing for more efficient extraction of gas.

"The reason why we want it is for the sake of consistency, so we can maximize the amount of gas that we can drain, which means more money for the people who own the property and leased it to us," said Pitzarella. "We can plan farther in advance with the wells we will need to drill and the pipelines we will need to lay."

House Republicans spokesperson Steve Miskin said the forced pooling bill was only one of many issues relating to natural gas drilling which lawmakers would address in the coming months.[27]

Unemployment compensation

In November 2013, the Pennsylvania state House and state Senate voted unanimously on a bill, which was signed by Corbett, to change the state’s unemployment compensation law. The bill closed a loophole that allowed a state employee to retire from his job and begin collecting benefits, only to be hired back as a part-time employee while also collecting unemployment compensation after leaving a previous job. While the law closed a triple-dipping loophole, the changes do not prevent double-dipping, in which a state employee retires, begins collecting pension benefits, and returns to work a part-time position.[28]

Minimum wage

In December 2013, Corbett announced he did not support raising Pennsylvania’s minimum wage given its negative impact on the state’s economic recovery. “The economy’s starting to come back,” Corbett said during an interview with the Wilkes-Barre Times Leader. "I always worry about changing the dynamic when we’re starting to come out of (the recession.)"[29] The minimum wage in Pennsylvania was last raised in 2006 to $7.15 an hour, but the state minimum wage now stands at $7.50 after the national minimum wage increased in 2007. Most Democratic candidates challenging Corbett for Governor have endorsed an increase in the state’s minimum wage.[29]

Pension costs

For the 2014-2015 fiscal year, Pennsylvania is expected to devote $2 billion to state public pensions, including the State Employees Retirement System (SERS) and the Public School Employees Retirement System (PSERS), an increase of nearly $600 million from the 2013-2014 budget and roughly $1 out of every $15 Pennsylvania plans to spend. The increase in pension costs generated several responses from Pennsylvania leaders. The Corbett administration expressed interest in creating a hybrid pension system to potentially cut nearly $7 billion off the state's total pension bill.[30]

Welfare savings

In February 2014, it was reported that Pennsylvania saved nearly $2 billion from preventing welfare waste, fraud, and abuse under the Corbett administration, according to Beverly Mackereth, the head of the state's Department of Public Welfare.[31] Mackereth said in an interview, “What we find is that most people are doing the right thing. They are not trying to commit waste, fraud and abuse. However, because those few take advantage of the system, we have to have some protections in place so that the truly vulnerable who are entitled to benefits get it, and those that aren’t, don’t get it.” According to the department, the savings included $338 million from avoiding high-risk applications and recovering over-payments, $476 million from audit recoveries and improper use of EBT cards, and $1.1 billion from stopping fraud before it began.[31]

Attorney General of Pennsylvania (2005-2011)


Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare")
See also: State Attorneys General Against the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010

In December of 2012, Corbett decided against establishing a Pennsylvania-specific health care exchange under the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. He explained that the Obama administration had not satisfactorily addressed various operational questions and concerns Pennsylvania officials had posed with respect to the state-based option. Along with Republican governors such as Chris Christie (NJ), Bob McDonnell (VA), and Bill Haslam (TN), Corbett's primary concern was about the potential cost of independent implementation, and whether the federal government would respect the autonomy states ostensibly earn as an extension of that financial independence[32]. Although he has not officially ceded all other provisional options for states unwilling to participate in the federal health care exchange, which is an online marketplace for citizens to purchase health insurance, Corbett and state lawmakers were unable to agree on an alternative by the December 14, 2012 deadline. Thus, Pennsylvania will enter the federal program by default. Pennsylvania is one of thirty-two states to opt out of a state-based program.[33]

In the wake of the historic passage of President Barack Obama's health care reform legislation on Christmas Eve in 2009, Corbett was one of ten Republican Attorneys General questioning not only the constitutionality of a specific controversial provision within the Senate version of the bill, but also exploring potential legal challenges to the measure as well. The stipulation in question was the back room deal Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid struck with Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson to recruit him as the 60th vote needed to pass the measure, an arrangement "dubbed the "Nebraska Compromise" or the "Cornhusker Kickback" by GOP critics." The agreement gives Nebraska exemption from its share of the Medicaid expansion, "a carve out that is expected to cost the federal government $100 million over 10 years." Corbett tweeted that he was "analyzing [the] constitutionality of [the] "Nebraska Compromise" in health care bill."[34]

On the same morning President Barack Obama signed into law his controversial health care reform bill, the one that narrowly passed the United States House of Representatives just two days before, Corbett and twelve other Attorneys General, all but one being Republican, filed suit against "the federal government to stop the massive health care overhaul, claiming it's unconstitutional."[35] His office, however, "did not detail the specific legal grounds he might cite in arguing against the legislation."[36]

Illegal immigration

Nearly two weeks after the United States Justice Department filed suit against the state of Arizona over its anti-illegal immigration law, Senate Bill 1070 - The Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act (SB 1070), contending that it "interferes with federal immigration responsibilities," Corbett joined eight other Republican state attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in support of the measure.[37] The Pennsylvania Attorney General argued that the "the lawsuit filed by the federal government in this case undermines the constitutional authority of all our states."[38] This opinion, however, was at odds with the current governor, who contended it was the sole authority of the federal government to handle responsibility for the issue.


Civil rights complaint

In August 2008, Thomas D. Kimmet, a former deputy in the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office and a ten year veteran of the Department of Revenue, filed a federal civil rights complaint in United States Middle District Court alleging that the state's top law enforcer, Tom Corbett, had violated his constitutional rights. Furthermore, Kimmet accused Corbett and his lieutenants of preventing him from "correcting inefficiencies in the Office of Attorney General's (OAG) Financial Enforcement Section (FES)," the state's last resort in collect debts and back taxes, that may be costing taxpayers millions of dollars per year.[39][40]

Corbett denied having any memory of there being significant problems related to the FES and acknowledged that in signing Mr. Kimmet's walking papers in November 2008, he did not see if he had asked for a review of his dismissal.[39]

Kimmet charged that the FES was making "fraudulent payouts for services that were unearned or earned improperly by private collection agencies" and that "many debts collected by state agencies were improperly credited to private vendors."[41][42] However, when he made attempts to correct these issues, he encountered harsh resistance from his superiors and even members of his immediate staff. He said that Corbett refused to follow up on his investigation into the alteration of FES records in order "to avoid public disclosure of possible criminal misconduct and fraud."[41] The OAG vigorously denied all of these charges. As to the former deputy attorney general's dismissal, the OAG alleged that Mr. Kimmet was a poor manager who routinely acted aggressively toward staff, rejected proposed compromises, and, most importantly, "failed to discharge his responsibilities on a costly and critical technology project."[41]



See also: Pennsylvania gubernatorial election, 2014

Corbett is running for re-election as governor in 2014. In Nov. 2012, he said that he "has no plans to break" the tradition of Pennsylvania governors serving two terms.[43] The general election took place November 4, 2014.

Race background

There were 36 states holding regularly scheduled gubernatorial elections in 2014, with up to 10 seats considered most likely to face partisan switch including Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett. He was moved into to the top slot on the Washington Post's "endangered" list in March 2013, after having been in third place during the prior rating cycle.[44][45][46] Corbett's upgraded vulnerability status followed his failure to enact any of his three tent-pole policy initiatives during the recently concluded spring legislative session. The timing also corresponded to a further swell of Democratic candidates entering the 2014 governor's race.

By the summer of 2013, The New York Times, The Washington Post and Governing all rated Republican incumbent Tom Corbett as one of the most vulnerable governors facing re-election in 2014.[47] Their reports reflected the Republican governor's increasingly weak position heading into the 2014 election season, when his abysmal job approval ratings were put to the test by state Democrats, fired-up for an ousting after years under a Republican trifecta.[48]

Early polling and candidates

A July 2013 survey taken by Harper Polling showed that just under a quarter of state residents thought Corbett deserved to be elected again in 2014.[49] Those results backed up earlier polling figures released by Quinnipiac University, which had him at 38 percent job approval and substantially behind Democratic gubernatorial candidate U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz in a hypothetical general election match-up.[50] The Quinnipiac poll showed Schwartz beating Corbett by a whopping 10 points. These were even better numbers than had been revealed in a similar survey conducted previously by Public Opinion Strategies, a Republican-aligned firm.[51]

Back in April 2013, Schwartz was already looking especially threatening due to Corbett's dismal popularity among female respondents, 54 percent of whom expressed opposition to Corbett’s re-election compared to 27 percent who supported another term for the governor.[52]

Several Democratic hopefuls - Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Secretary John Hanger, Hanger's predecessor Kate McGinty, Cumberland County minister Max Myers, Lebanon County Commissioner Jo Ellen Litz, York businessman Tom Wolf and State Treasurer Rob McCord - formally launched 2014 campaigns for governor. Three other potential Democratic candidates were mentioned in connection with the race: State rep. H. Scott Conklin, former state auditor and state senator Jack Wagner and county commission chairman Josh Shapiro.[53][54]Cite error: Closing </ref> missing for <ref> tag

Republican primary

Two Republicans were also mentioned as potential primary opponents for Governor Corbett: former radio announcer Tom Lineaweaver and conservative activist Bob Guzzardi.[55][56] Guzzardi filed for the Republican primary and initially survived a challenge to his campaign's signatures after the Republican Party of Pennsylvania tried to get him disqualified.[57] However, on appeal to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, Guzzardi was ordered stricken from the ballot on a technicality. The majority on the court found that Guzzardi had failed to "meet a deadline for filing a statement of financial interests" with the State Ethics Commission and his campaign filing therefore "possessed a 'fatal defect.'"[58] Two justices dissented, citing the lower court's finding that Guzzardi had filed the proper forms with the Pennsylvania Department of State and had been told by an employee there that he did not need to also file with the State Ethics Board.[58][59]

I agree with the Commonwealth Court that what occurred here was a breakdown in the administrative process. To strike this candidate's name from the ballot is akin to denying candidates their right to appear on the ballot under circumstances where there was some accident or natural disaster preventing candidates from entering the filing office.[60]

—Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Max Baer, In Re: Nom. Pet. of Robert Guzzardi Dissenting Statement

Democratic primary
See also: Primary election results

Businessman Tom Wolf took the Democratic primary by storm, spending on early campaign ads and taking an early lead that proved unsurpassed by the other candidates. This was an upset for early favorite Allyson Schwartz, who finished a distant second.

Third-party candidates

Green Party candidate Paul Glover and Libertarian Party candidate Ken Krawchuk failed to get on to the November general election ballot after failing to collect the 17,000 required signatures.[61] Referencing the perceived lack of options on the ballot following the qualifying period, Republican-turned-Independent Tom Lineaweaver declared a write-in campaign.[62] Lineaweaver had previously been considered a possible Republican primary challenger to Corbett.


  • Former Pennsylvania Governors Dick Thornburgh, Tom Ridge and Mark Schweike[63]
  • PEG PAC (affiliated with Pennsylvania Business Council)[64]
  • Chamber PAC (affiliated with Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry}[65]


See also: Pennsylvania gubernatorial election, 2010

Corbett announced his candidacy for the Republican party nomination for Governor of Pennsylvania on September 15, 2009.[66] A Quinnipiac poll taken in December 2009 indicated that he led United States Representative Jim Gerlach for the Republican nomination with 38 percent favoring his candidacy. Furthermore, the polling data at that time suggested that he held an edge over the three top-polling Democrats in hypothetical head-to-head match-ups.[67]

  • 2010 General Election
Corbett and his runningmate Jim Cawley earned 54.5% of the vote in the general election on November 2, 2010, defeating Democrats Dan Onorato and runningmate Scott Conklin.[68]
Governor/Lt. Gov. of Pennsylvania, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngTom Corbett/Jim Cawley 54.5% 2,172,763
     Democratic Dan Onorato/H. Scott Conklin 45.5% 1,814,788
Total Votes 3,987,551
Election Results via Pennsylvania Department of State

  • 2010 Republican Primary
Corbett won the Republican nomination for governor on May 18, 2010 with 68.7% of the vote over opponent Samuel Rohrer.[69]
Governor of Pennsylvania, 2010
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngTom Corbett 68.7% 589,249
Samuel Rohrer 31.3% 267,893
Total Votes 857,142


  • 2008 Race for Attorney General - Republican Primary[70]
    • Tom Corbett ran unopposed

On November 4, 2008, Tom Corbett won re-election to the office of Pennsylvania Attorney General. He defeated John M. Morganelli (D) and Marakay J. Rogers (L) in the general election.

Pennsylvania Attorney General, 2008
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngTom Corbett Incumbent 52.4% 3,002,927
     Democratic John M. Morganelli 45.7% 2,619,791
     Libertarian Marakay J. Rogers 1.9% 109,856
Total Votes 5,732,574
Election Results Via: Pennsylvania Department of State


2004 Race for Attorney General - Republican Primary[71]
Candidates Percentage
Green check mark.jpg Tom Corbett (R) 52.8%
Bruce Castor (R) 47.2%
Total votes 931,362

On November 2, 2004, Tom Corbett won election to the office of Pennsylvania Attorney General. He defeated Jim Eisenhower (D) and Marakay J. Rogers (G) in the general election.

Pennsylvania Attorney General, 2004
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngTom Corbett 50.4% 2,730,718
     Democratic Jim Eisenhower 48.3% 2,621,927
     Green Marakay J. Rogers 1.3% 70,624
Total Votes 5,423,269
Election Results Via: Pennsylvania Department of State

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Corbett is available dating back to 2004. Based on available campaign finance records, Corbett raised a total of $41,719,301 during that time period. This information was last updated on May 14, 2013.[72]

Tom Corbett's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 PA Governor/Lieutenant Governor Not up for election $2,962,146
2010 PA Governor & Lieutenant Governor/PA Attorney General* Won $29,499,748
2008 PA Attorney General Won $4,258,741
2006 PA Attorney General Not up for election $481,821
2004 PA Attorney General Won $4,516,845
Grand Total Raised $41,719,301
In 2010, Corbett raised $698,226 for his Attorney General seat, which was not up for re-election, and $28,801,522 for the gubernatorial race, which he won.


Ballotpedia collects information on campaign donors for each year in which a candidate or incumbent is running for election. The following table offers a breakdown of Tom Corbett's donors each year.[73] Click [show] for more information.


Corbett currently resides in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania with his wife, Susan Manbeck, though their family home is in Shaler Township. The couple has two children - Tom, a video game producer, and Katherine, a prosecutor in the Philadelphia District Attorney's office, as well as one grandchild.[74]

Recent news

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Contact Information

Tom Corbett for Governor Campaign logo

Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General
16th Floor
Strawberry Square
Harrisburg, PA 17120

Phone: 717-787-3391
Fax: 717-787-8242

See also

External links

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  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Pennsylvania Office of the Governor, "Governor Tom Corbett," accessed September 28, 2012
  2. Office of the Pennsylvania Governor, "Rebuilding PA: Gov. Corbett's Priorities," accessed June 20, 2013
  3. New York Times, "In State Governments, Signs of a Healthier G.O.P.," April 16, 2013
  4. WNEP, "Governor Corbett Jump Starts Re-Election Campaign In NEPA," November 6, 2013
  5. PoliticsPA, "Corbett Will Seek Re-Election," November 13, 2012
  6. The New York Times, "Which Governors Are Most Vulnerable in 2014?," April 8, 2013
  7. Capitol blogs, "Corbett approvals stay in the basement in new F&M, Quinnipiac polls," September 26, 2012
  8. The Philadelphia Inquirer, "Corbett pummeled in new poll," April 29, 2013
  10. The Business Journals, "Governors and jobs: How governors rank for job creation in their states," June 27, 2013
  11. The Business Journals, "How state governors rank on their job-growth record," June 27, 2013
  12. Pennsylvania Independent, "Privatization of State Liquor Stores Could Yield $2 Billion" 11 Nov. 2010
  13. Angela Couloumbis and Rita Giordano, Philadelphia Inquirer, "Corbett's new liquor privatization plan would benefit public schools," February 1, 2013
  14. 14.0 14.1 Brad Bumsted, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, "Turzai: House could get liquor privatization bill soon," accessed March 5, 2013
  15. 15.0 15.1 Bill information Pennsylvania House Bill 790, accessed on March 7, 2013
  16. Katrina Anderson, Commonwealth Foundation, "What's in New Liquor Liberty Bill?," March 18, 2013
  17. Angela Couloumbis, Philadelphia Inquirer, "Plan for LCB privatization is formally introduced," accessed March 6, 2013
  18. Commonwealth Foundation, "Liquor Proposal Delivers Convenience," January 30, 2013
  19. Tony Romeo, CBS Philly, "Pa. House Passes Liquor Store Privatization; Hurdles Loom In Senate," March 21, 2013
  20. Nathan Benefield, Commonwealth Foundation, February 6, 2013
  21. Commonwealth Foundation, "Pennsylvani State Budget 2013," March 26, 2013
  22. CNN, "Pennsylvania, Wyoming governors endorse Romney," April 17, 2012
  23. The Jakarta Post, "Lawyer: Penn St. coach still says he's not guilty," June 26, 2012
  24. The Examiner, "Will Sandusky verdict put Pennsylvania governor Corbett on trial?," June 24, 2012
  25. Reuters, "Pennsylvania attorney general says Sandusky got fair trial," June 25, 2012
  26. The Washington Post, "Defense lawyer: Ex-Penn St. assistant Sandusky wants ‘people to know that he’s not guilty’," June 25, 2012
  27. "Gas Drilling Critics Say Corbett Will Endanger Property Rights With Forced Pooling," Pennsylvania Independent, JANUARY 4, 2011
  28. The Reporter Online "Triple-dipping loophole in Pa. unemployment law finally closed," accessed December 6, 2013
  29. 29.0 29.1 WatchDog.org, "Corbett: No plans to raise minimum wage in PA," accessed December 24, 2013
  30. WatchDog.org, "Cash or credit? PA facing $600 million in new pension costs," accessed February 10, 2014
  31. 31.0 31.1 WatchDog.org, "DPW chief: PA saves billions fighting welfare fraud," February 27, 2014
  32. The Associated Press, "New Jersey Gov. Christie vetoes state-run health exchange bill," December 6, 2012
  33. The New York Times, "Most states miss deadline to set up health exchange," December 14, 2012
  34. Politico, "GOP AGs may sue over health bill" 24 Dec. 2009
  35. Associated Press "13 attorneys general sue over health care overhaul" 23 March, 2010
  36. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette "Corbett pits Pa. against health plan" 23 March, 2010
  37. FOX News "Justice Department Files Suit Against Arizona Immigration Law" 6 July, 2010
  38. The Philadelphia Inquirer, "Pennsylvania joins brief in support of Arizona immigration law" 15 July, 2010
  39. 39.0 39.1 Pennsylvania Independent, ""Whistleblower" Suit Allows Peek into AG's Office" 16 April, 2010
  40. The Philadelphia Inquirer, "Two lawsuits allege Corbett has mismanaged Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office" 21 June, 2010
  41. 41.0 41.1 41.2 Pennsylvania Independent, "Civil Rights Complaint Alleges AG Staff Balked" 19 April, 2010
  42. Pennsylvania Independent, "What is a Whistleblower?" 20 April, 2010
  43. Allentown Morning Call, "Corbett: No plans to end 'tradition' of Pa. governors serving two terms," November 12, 2012
  44. University of Virginia Center for Politics: Larry Sabato's Crystal Ball, "2013-2014 Gubernatorial Races," April 29, 2013
  45. The Washington Post, "The Fix's top 15 gubernatorial races," March 22, 2013
  46. Governing Politics, "2013-2014 Governor's Races: Who's Vulnerable?," December 12, 2012
  47. The New York Times, "Which Governors Are Most Vulnerable in 2014?," April 8, 2013
  48. The Washington Post, "Tom Corbett is the most endangered governor in the country," July 12, 2013
  49. Harper Polling, "Pennsylvania Poll: State Budget & Corbett Re-election," July 1-2, 2013
  50. Quinnipiac University, "Schwartz, Best-Known Of Unknown Dems, Tops Corbett, Quinnipiac University Pennsylvania Poll Finds; Girl Next Door Clinton Tops Native Son Santorum In 2016," June 7, 2013
  51. Public Opinion Strategies via the Philadelphia City Paper "Pennsylvania Statewide/Philadelphia Suburbs Poll," April 30-May 2, 2013
  53. Philadelphia Inquirer, "State Treasurer Rob McCord launches PAC for governors race," July 11, 2013
  54. PoliticsPA, "Exclusive: McGinty to Launch Guv Exploratory Committee," March 18, 2013
  55. Facebook, "Tom Lineaweaver for Governor of PA," accessed September 2, 2013
  56. The Republic, "Conservative activist Bob Guzzardi says he aims to challenge Corbett in Pa. GOP primary," Decamber 31, 2013
  57. TribLive, "Judge says Corbett primary challenger can stay on ballot, appeal planned," April 16, 2014
  58. 58.0 58.1 PennLive, "Pa. Supreme Court ousts Guzzardi from GOP ballot in governor's race," May 1, 2014
  59. PennLive, "Corbett challenger Robert Guzzardi will stay on Republican primary ballot," April 15, 2014
  60. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  61. TribLive, "Third-party hopefuls abandon bids for Pa. governor," August 1, 2014
  62. Son of David Forums: Write In The Right Tom, "Why I Want To Be Governor," accessed August 8, 2014
  63. Politics PA, "Three former PA Governors Endorse Corbett in Hershey," November 12, 2013
  64. Politics PA, "Corbett Secures First PAC Endorsement of New Campaign," November 5, 2013
  65. Politics PA, "PA Chamber Endorses Corbett," December 12, 2013
  66. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette "Corbett announces he will run for governor in 2010" 15 Sept. 2009
  67. Philly.com, "Poll finds Attorney General Tom Corbett holds wide lead in governor's race" 17 Dec. 2009
  68. Pennsylvania Department of State, "2010 General Election Results," accessed September 28, 2012
  69. Pennsylvania Department of State, "2010 General Primary Official Results," accessed September 28, 2012
  70. Pennsylvania Department of State: Elections Information - 2008 Republican Primary Election Results
  71. Pennsylvania Department of State: Elections Information - 2004 Republican Primary Election Results
  72. Follow the Money, " Career fundraising for Tom Corbett," accessed May 14, 2013
  73. Follow the Money.org, "Home," accessed February 17, 2015
  74. Project Vote Smart, "Tom Corbett biography," accessed September 28, 2012

Political offices
Preceded by
Ernie Preate
Pennsylvania Attorney General
Succeeded by
Mike Fisher
Preceded by
Jerry Pappert
Pennsylvania Attorney General
Succeeded by
Linda Kelly (R)
Preceded by
Ed Rendell (D)
Governor of Pennsylvania
Succeeded by