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O’Brien poised to declare PA-11 candidacy on Saturday (Updated)

O’Brien poised to declare PA-11 candidacy on Saturday (Updated)

Lackawanna County Commissioner Corey O’Brien seems ready to make his race for Congress official Saturday morning, when he will address supporters “from the steps of his childhood home” in Dunmore, his campaign said.

O’Brien, who was elected county commissioner in 2007, has been making noise about a primary challenge to Congressman Paul Kanjorski (D-11) for months. In April, he assailed Kanjorski’s vote against President Obama’s stimulus package as “insulting,” and he filed FEC paperwork to form a campaign in mid-September.

While Kanjorski has been seen as vulnerable in a general election, party insiders say he remains popular among Democrats in the district, which also includes parts of Carbon, Monroe, Luzerne and Columbia counties. After public polling had forecasted a loss, Kanjorski narrowly held off Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta last November.

He has yet to signal whether or not he will seek reelection, but has been fundraising throughout the cycle. A Kanjorski aide didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday, but in a recent discussion, he declined to talk politics.

“We’re not even focused on this right now,” spokesman Ed Mitchell said. “The Congressman is doing his job.”

UPDATE: Mitchell reiterates his earlier comments in an e-mail. “We really don’t have any more to say about next year other than what I’ve said before,” he writes. “The Congressman is very busy doing the job he’s paid to do. If we have more to add, I assure you that I’ll keep you informed.  I’m sorry I have no other observations about this than that right now.”

September 30, 2009 at 10:15 am

--pa2010.com Staff

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  1. The Scranton Guardian

    Sep 30th, 2009

    Kanjo must go !!!!

  2. Frank

    Sep 30th, 2009

    OBrien is garbage and a crook. He has stolen from us the taxpayers

  3. Karen

    Sep 30th, 2009

    Frank: you’re insane. He’s a great commissioner.

  4. Frank

    Sep 30th, 2009

    Karen,

    Name one single thing he has done to benefit the taxpayers. Do not make statements like that without being able to back it up like:

    1. Wasting a half a million dollars to give to his former employer, a lobbyist, that hasn’t done a single thing

    2. Wasted a quarter of a million dollars for a baseball study that was already done.

    3. Fired employees because of their political support and hired his cronies at three times the previous salary.

    I can keep going if you would like.

    These are all facts.

  5. [...] will be facing a challenger from his own party this year. The Pennsylvania political website PA2010.com is reporting that Lackawanna County Commissioner Corey O’Brien is prepared to officially announce his [...]

  6. Pete

    Sep 30th, 2009

    Frank:

    I’m not Karen, but your statements are false. The county’s lobbyist is Alston + Bird…Corey never worked for them, and their contract is ~$120K per yr. A+B is one of the most reputable shops in the country, and they’ve done a wonderful job.

    Fired employees because of their political affiliation? Name one. They trimmed the bloated county workforce consisting of talentless cogs too unqualified and lazy to work in the private sector.

    Get a real job, Frank. Or run against Corey- you’ll get your ass kicked.

  7. Lenny

    Oct 1st, 2009

    Corey will be a man that is accounatble. He will vote on the issues the way the people want him to, not like most other congressmen. Corey I will be happy to help you if you chose to run.

  8. Lacka Wonderful

    Oct 1st, 2009

    O’Brien will get smoked and there are plenty of people in Lackawanna County who can’t wait to see it. Many Dems want to see him lose the primary to Kanjo and then lose his slot on the commissioner ticket. He’ll be practicing law in 2 years. He won’t be Congressman and he won’t be Commissioner.

  9. Frank

    Oct 1st, 2009

    Lenny,

    You don’t have a single clue what you talking about which is typical of liberals. Every single person OBrien fired was because of politics, NOT TRIMMING THE BUDGET. HO DO YOU TAKE A 28K JOB TO 63K, 27K TO 61K, 58K TO 77K, 31K TO 55K AND THESE ARE ALL FACTS…OH LETS NAME NAMES THAT ARE GETTING THESE BIG SALARIES: RICK JONES, JOE SHEEHAN, LIZ RANDOL (WHOM RESIGNED), KEVIN HAGGERTY (WHO HAD A 60K JOB CREATED FOR AND IS USELESS). WOULD YOU LIKE ME TO KEEP GOING? JUST WAIT UNTIL ALL THE PEOPLE FIRED BY OBRIEN BECAUSE HE VIOLATED THEIR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS SUPPORTING THE POLITICAL OPPOSITION COME BACK TO HAUNT HIM. NEVER MIND JOB, GET A LIFE.

  10. Frank

    Oct 1st, 2009

    I meant Pete if that is your real name..Loser!

  11. Steve

    Oct 1st, 2009

    This was a huge bone thrown to the lobbyist that has been useless to Lackawanna County. Pete, how can you make that outrageous statement that they have done wonderful things. Name one, just one.

  12. Dan Hirschhorn

    Oct 1st, 2009

    Hey guys, Dan Hirschhorn here, editor of pa2010.com.

    Just wanted to chime in real quick to encourage us all to keep it civil.

    O’Brien is fair game as an elected official seeking higher office. But let’s try not to drag other people through the mud in an unseemly way.

    Great conversation though. Lively.

    Let’s keep it going.

    Dan

  13. Lackawanna County Taxpayer

    Oct 1st, 2009

    Corey OBrien is as arrogant as they come and it just goes to show. He has barely gotten his feet wet as Commissioner and has not done a single positive thing for Lackawanna County other than give his friends whom most are unqualified big paying jobs. The billboard he put up stated “Putting Taxpayers First” He has not done that in any way. He has wasted so much of taxpayer’s money and I don’t know who he thinks he is stating it was “insulting” Kanjorski voted against the “stimulus” package when it has done nothing, just look at the unemployment rate at almost double figures nationally. OBrien’s idol, OBama, stated unemployment would not go above 8% with the bill that no one read. Simply astounding.

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