Jake Corman isn’t running for governor in 2018.
The Pennsylvania Senate majority leader told the Centre Daily Times on Wednesday that he gave a lot of thought to the governor’s race, but ultimately he decided not to challenge Gov. Tom Wolf in the next election.
To be a candidate for governor while try to negotiate with Wolf on the issues would create unnecessary tension, Corman, R-Benner Township, said.
He said some in his caucus have suggested waiting for a Republican governor before tackling pension reform.
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“It’s a big problem, and it needs (to be) solved now,” Corman said.
If Wolf benefits politically from what the legislature accomplishes, so be it, he said.
Corman — in his second term as majority leader — enjoys the job, he said, adding that he thinks it’s important to not use the position as a “springboard” to something bigger.
With rollbacks of environmental regulations promised by the Trump administration and U.S. Congress, Corman said the state legislature is looking to have more of a role in the regulatory process.
When bureaucrats make these decisions, they can’t be held to account the same way elected officials are, Corman said.
In terms of alternative energy, the senator said the best way for the state to be involved is to invest in research.
It’s in everyone’s best interest to increase alternative energy usage, but at this point it’s cost prohibitive, he said.
Researchers can help to figure out how to make renewable energy sources such as wind and solar more economically viable, Corman said.
He said he’s not an “all government’s evil Republican,” saying that he believes government does have a role.
Clean air and water are as important of issues as the legislature can be dealing with, he said.
The senator has been watching the national health care debate.
He said the Affordable Care Act isn’t working the way it was intended, adding that the “political volume” around the issue is problematic.
In addition, Corman said he’d be fine with states being given the power to handle health care for their residents.
The ideal is to get people insured with insurance they can afford, he said.
There’s no way to contain the cost of health care if people are consumers rather than shoppers, Corman said.
If you go
What: Sen. Jake Corman live town hall
When: 9-11 a.m. April 3
Where: Celebration Hall, Hoag’s Catering, 2280 Commercial Blvd., State College
Note: Attendance is by RSVP only. Those interested in attending can RSVP to 355-0477 or firstname.lastname@example.org.