Charlotte Tyler
September 2, 2023

Pennsylvania Democrats worry about party strife, calling it a 'f------g disaster'

A few weeks ago, in anticipation of a large gathering of rural activists, the Pennsylvania Democratic Party printed thousands of cards with the message "Vote at Polls: Election Day Tuesday, November 8."

The issue: Election Day is on November 7, as Politico reported.

Photographs of the blunder were distributed to Democratic insiders in Pennsylvania. For many, it was the latest indication of a state party in disarray.

According to interviews with 20 Democratic officials and operatives throughout Pennsylvania, the state party appears to be unraveling from financial problems and a lack of trust within the ranks with just over a year until the 2024 presidential election.

What The Interviews Found

The interviews were conducted with elected officials, county chairmen, members of the state committee, former state party employees, and strategists.

“It’s amateur hour,” said a state committee member who, like some fellow Democrats, spoke on the promise of anonymity. “It’s a [expletive] disaster,” said a former state party staffer.

In July, the state party initiated cuts that have not been reported until now. As of early June, one of its political action committees had only $7,500 in the bank, according to its most recent campaign finance filings.

Concerns Among Democrats

Democrats in the state are reportedly beginning to doubt the competence of its leadership, including that of state party chair Sharif Street.

The predominant concern is that the party will not be in the best possible condition ahead of the upcoming presidential election and a crucial Senate race.

In November 2023, voters will also decide on a race for the state supreme court in which Democrats are focusing hard on abortion.

“It’s concerning that the state party is laying people off as we’re heading into a really important Supreme Court race, which then leads into the presidential year,” said Mike Mikus, a Pittsburgh-based Democratic consultant.

“They’re going to have to figure out a path forward to build their own fundraising operation, and it sounds like there’s a lot of building to be done right now," Mikus added.

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