PA Headlines: U.S. Senate Ditches Dress Code as Fetterman, Others Choose Casual Clothes

WASHINGTON (AP) — The stuffy Senate is now a bit less formal.

Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Monday that staff for the chamber’s Sergeant-at-Arms — the Senate’s official clothes police — will no longer enforce a dress code on the Senate floor. The change comes after Pennsylvania Sen. John Fetterman has been unapologetically wearing shorts as he goes about his duties, voting from doorways so he doesn’t get in trouble for his more casual attire.

“There has been an informal dress code that was enforced,” Schumer said in a statement. “Senators are able to choose what they wear on the Senate floor. I will continue to wear a suit.”

Schumer did not mention Fetterman in his statement about the dress code, which will only apply to senators, not staff.

The changes prompted outrage from some of the chamber’s more formal members, eroding a bit of the good will that first-term Fetterman had earned earlier this year when he checked himself into the hospital for clinical depression.


WEST READING – ABC 27 reports…Federal safety investigators issued a subpoena to Pennsylvania’s public utility regulator on Monday for documents related to a fatal explosion at a chocolate factory, escalating a months-long legal dispute over the state agency’s authority to share the sensitive information.

The National Transportation Safety Board said the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission has refused to provide unredacted inspection and investigation reports for UGI Utilities Inc., the natural gas utility at the center of the probe into the March 24 blast at the R.M. Palmer Co. plant in West Reading.

The powerful natural gas explosion leveled one building, heavily damaged another and killed seven people.


HARRISBURG — Spotlight PA reports…Pennsylvania’s five most recent former governors have collectively announced their support for open primaries, adding new fuel to a long-smoldering debate over whether the commonwealth should allow unaffiliated voters to help choose partisan candidates.

In a letter published Monday, Govs. Tom Corbett, Ed Rendell, Tom Ridge, Mark Schweiker, and Tom Wolf wrote that they, “pledged to govern on behalf of all Pennsylvanians,” and argued that primary elections are now decided by fewer, more extreme voters. The letter goes on to assert that opening primaries would help tamp down extremism and polarization.

Pennsylvania is one of nine states with a closed primary system.

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