Story of the day: Democrats gather in Charlotte for their national convention, where they decide to be ... Democrats. No more running from healthcare reform. No more queasy defenses of gay equality or abortion rights. Speeches by Michelle Obama and keynoter Julian Castro -- the first Hispanic keynote speaker in the the history of America's two big parties -- the party straight-up tells you what it stands for. (Added: Let's not forget Deval Patrick!)The contrast to the RNC is notable. I wonder if this is how Republicans felt in 2004.
You knew this was coming: A Kansas woman sues UPMC, alleging that she contracted hepatitis C from David Kwiatkowski in part because the Pittsburgh healthcare giant failed to report the hospital worker's misdeeds to law enforcement, which she says would have prevented the Hep-C infectee from finding work at the hospital she visited.
Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald makes some appointments to a chronically short-staffed air-pollution panel. Initial impression: The picks promise a lively debate, perhaps especially on Marcellus Shale issues. While they include Jeanne Clark, a spokesperson with environmental group Penn Future and Steve Hvozdovich of Clean Water Action, they also include an attorney with Babst Calland -- a law firm with a big Marcellus Shale practice -- and other industry types who represent business in environmental areas. Should be fun.
In case you missed it, the Women's and Girl's Foundation has a study out suggesting that, while the nationwide recession hit men much worse than women, Pennsylvania has been an outlier: "While job losses in Pennsylvania were also more severe for men than for women, the difference was much smaller and women lost only 20 percent fewer jobs than men." What's more, in the somewhat uneven recovery, "men have regained a larger share of the jobs lost than women, and that during the last year men’s job growth has significantly outstripped job growth for women." Still, both groups have unemployment rates hovering around 7 percent. At last -- equality!
He's ba-a-a-a-a-ck ... or at least he wants to be. Brace yourselves: Could former Gov. Ed Rendell run for office again? The law says yes, even if voters wince. But when you consider potential challengers to Tom Corbett in 2014, how many other names leap to mind?