Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Stacks under Wraps No Reason to Withhold Report on Lt. Governor

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Stacks under Wraps No Reason to Withhold Report on Lt. Governor

Article excerpt

Gov. Tom Wolf has made the disappointing decision to withhold a report on the alleged abusive treatment of state employees by Lt. Gov. Mike Stack and his wife, Tonya. Mr. Wolf said an airing of the contents would amount to "piling on" and be unfair to Mrs. Stack, who sought mental health treatment in the spring.

However, the state open-records law does not permit the withholding of records to prevent"piling on." Mr. Wolf is substituting his judgment for the law, just as Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto and Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald recently did in refusing to release their bid for Amazon's second headquarters.

Months ago, news organizations reported that Mr. Wolf had stripped the Stacks of their state police security detail and scaled back staffing at their state-owned home because of reports that the couple had been abusive to the help. At the time, Mr. Wolf asked the state inspector general's office to investigate the Stacks' behavior, and he said he would consider making the IG's report public.

There's no reason not to do so. Mrs. Stack's mental health treatment was acknowledged in the spring, and the IG's report isn't likely to contain details about her diagnosis or treatment. If it does, that information can be redacted. No one wants to pry into Mrs. Stack's health.

However, the report likely will shed light on what the Stacks did and said, and to whom. Mr. Stack has acknowledged rudeness, without giving many details. The IG's report is likely to provide details, and that information is relevant to voters, who will have to decide next year whether to give Mr. Stack another four years in the state's No. 2 job. By running for office, Mr. Stack, a Democrat, sought the spotlight. He can't turn it off at this pleasure.

On Wednesday, Democrats in the state Senate decided to endorse Mr. …

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