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Analyst: Corbett Makes “Shrewd” Moves In Tough Election Year

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(Gov. Tom Corbett speaks to reporters in Harrisburg.  Photo by Tony Romeo)

(Gov. Tom Corbett speaks to reporters in Harrisburg. Photo by Tony Romeo)

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By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — Governor Corbett made a couple of moves that surprised political observers this past week.

First the conservative Corbett, who has sought to rein in assistance programs and has imposed an asset test for food stamps, moved to preserve $300 million in federal food stamp benefits. Then came word he was massaging the controversial work search requirements in his proposed alternative for Medicaid expansion, instead offering a voluntary pilot program. Are these purely political moves for the Republican incumbent who faces re-election with dismal poll numbers? Franklin and Marshall College political analyst Terry Madonna believes at very least, they are shrewd moves.

“I don’t think there’s any doubt that there’s a sense of politics in what they’re doing,” Madonna said. “They understand the numbers. And they only way the numbers are going to move is if the governor relates to people.”

Madonna said it’s late in the game but the governor must try to change the narrative of “Corbett the Cutter.”

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