HARRISBURG (CBS) – As expected, Pennsylvania House Republicans have retained their two top leaders as they prepare to take control of the chamber in the new session of the state legislature that begins in January.
With Republicans taking the majority in the House, Sam Smith – the minority leader in the current session – moves up to become speaker, although that doesn’t become official until January. The current Republican whip, Mike Turzai of Allegheny County, moves up to majority leader in the new session.
With Pennsylvania facing a multi-billion dollar budget deficit, Turzai says there’s no question as to what job one will be:
“Clearly we have to begin working with Governor-elect Corbett on what the budget is going to look like. I mean, really, you have to start early on what’s ahead of us. And as Sam has said, it’s not, ‘oh you come in and tell us what you got last year and how much you want on top of it.’”
Turzai says all departments will have justify their expenditures. House Democrats will choose their new leadership team next week.
Reported by Tony Romeo, KYW Newsradio