PA-112: There’s a Race, and It’ll Be Fun!
March 5, 2016

When I was more active as a political blogger, I spent a lot of time writing about local races.  There isn’t really much going on locally in even-numbered years.  The School Board, Council, Mayoral, and Commissioner races are always during odd-numbered years (every 4 years, staggered), which means you’ll probably see me on fire in 2017.  This year, though, there is only one real race worth looking at, and that’s for the 112th Legislative District, which covers some of Scranton (parts of South Side and the Hill), as well as Dunmore and the Midvalley.

This year, we have three candidates.  Incumbent, State Rep. Frank Farina, will face the man he replaced, former State Rep. Kevin Haggerty.  Throwing his hat in the ring is Throop’s Council President, Tom Lukasiewicz.

For followers of my old blog, NEPArtisan, you may recall I used to run a regular feature called “The Daily Hag” about the antics of Kevin Haggerty.  He and I, personally, have had our ups and downs.  In the Daily Hag days, I wrote about his harassment of voters, chasing cars down the I-81 on ramp, threatening to “beat the shit” out of a rival at a Little League, and on and on.  It was fun.  After, he reached out to me, we made peace, and he even helped out on one of my ill-fated attempts at School Board.  And then he blocked me from Facebook when I didn’t support him in one of his never-ending attempts to hold public office again.  I got some cryptic messages from his wife.

You know, what I like to call “the usual” when dealing with Camp Haggerty.

There’s a lot that can be said about him since he stopped being a State Rep, but I’ll leave it for now, as we’ve already got a juicy beginning to the race.  Even though Kevin Haggerty plans to run, he hasn’t bothered to pay Lamar Advertising for his last campaign (he ran for Clerk of Judicial Records last year).  You’re looking at a debt of $8,200.  Not off to a good start for a campaign when somebody is pulling you in front of a magistrate.

Click here for the goods.

I’m not sure how Haggerty can raise money in good conscience while stiffing (I guess it’s “alleged stiffing” until the hearing?) Lamar for his last campaign’s billboards.  I’m not sure if Kevin or his committee will be liable.  The hearing is April 12th, so we can bet the Times will have somebody there and we’ll get an update.

I don’t think Kevin is a bad person, he’s just got severe, career-crippling temperament issues.  NEPA politics makes for great entertainment, so I’m sure we’ll here a lot more out of the 112th race.

One final note: Anytime I ever wrote anything about Haggerty would be followed by a lengthy, convoluted e-mail.  I’m wondering if I’ll return to the old days.

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  1. It’s always great to see you blogging again Tom.

    Here’s my two cents on Kevin Haggerty…and for the record I’d say this directly to him (I actually think I have at some point): He’s kind of insane, but in a good way. What does that really mean?

    Well NEPA is full of cookie-cutter politicians who skillfully chart a course that involves ruffling few, if any, feather while designing careers mainly built for self-enrichment. Heck even the names run into each other. These folks stay in the game until they do something so over the top that even NEPA’s complacent voters acknowledge to be dumb (think Bob Lesh v1.0; not to be confused with the current Bob Lesh v2.0). Rocking the boat is the last thing most, if any, ever do. See Frank Farina.

    It’s this failure to challenge the status quo…a fear of rocking the boat in a meaningful way…that I think is one of the reasons why Scranton is in its current and on-going fiscal pickle. And we all know how well the status quo has served Scranton (and by extension all of NEPA).

    Enter Kevin Haggerty.

    Predictable? No. Status quo? No. Clearly he has managed to cheese off more than a few folks in his short political career. Yes he definitely has a temper, but I’ll take a genuine “pissed off” any day over the passive aggressive politician speak that we hear constantly from elected officials. This almost sounds “Trump-esque”, but that’s where the similarities end, as Mr Haggerty isn’t orange and most of his policy positions have seemed pretty reasonable.

    My current state representative is Aaron Kaufer, who looks and votes like some weird fusion of Ted Cruz and Mike Lee. In his short career he’s already proven himself to be incredibly predictable. I know because I’ve read his state funded campaign material (I mean newsletter). We don’t need more like Frank Farina or Aaron Kaufer in Harrisburg. We already have too many. Kevin Haggerty may have his flaws, but a lack in sincerity isn’t one of them.

    Just my two and a half cents.

    Now I have to stop stalling and get to some school work.

    All the Best…Steve

  2. While I am always happy with somebody who disrupts the system, Kevin sacrifices any kind of respect with his behavior. The long, non-nonsensical rants I used to get from him are only the tip of the iceberg. There are local officials who’ve had to threaten him with PFAs because of his constant harassment. His former chief-of-staff is now his mortal enemy after some of the awful things Kevin did to him (I messaged this gentleman and asked if he was interested in being public about it, so we’ll see). One pub in Dunmore banned him for his treatment of the staff. I could go on and on and on.

    His negatives far outweigh the fact that he calls himself a populist outsider. He had a political job with Lackawanna County for years as a Director of Governmental Affairs– not very outsider. He would’ve lost this job had he not resigned to run for office– he never showed up for work. Not only that, check his roll call record in Harrisburg. He never showed up to work there, either. His cousins own the Scranton Times — not very outsider, either.

    He’s too loose a cannon.

    And welcome back to the comments section! :o)