Jessica Florio, the Republican candidate running against state Sen. Katie Muth, has filed an ethics complaint against the incumbent Democrat alleging misuse of her official state social media account.
Muth (D-Berks/Chester/Montgomery) sent tweets on her official taxpayer-funded account to organizations and individuals that appear to be related to campaigns for other Democrats, rather than official communications with constituents. For example, she used her official account to forward a tweet from Robert Zeigler, who is running against GOP House Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff.
Zeigler describes himself as the “progressive, working-class candidate for PA State House to represent the 171st district.”
Muth also re-tweeted at least two messages from the far-Left activist group BoldProgressives.org:
Muth has since removed her retweet of the tweet.
“Clearly, Sen. Katie Muth believes the rules do not apply to her,” Pennsylvania Senate Republican Campaign Committee Communications Director Michael Straw said. “As a senator, she is entitled to utilize her taxpayer-funded social media accounts to spread her own radical opinions and bad policy positions. However, Sen. Muth crossed the line on June 29 and June 30 when she used her official social media account to prop up fellow Democrat campaigns on the taxpayer dime. Pennsylvanians send their hard-earned tax dollars to Harrisburg to improve infrastructure, fund our schools, and keep our streets safe, not to prop up Muth and her radical allies. Katie Muth knows better, and the people of Pennsylvania deserve better.”
Muth did not respond to a request for comment.
The Florio campaign released this statement: “Sen. Muth, who refers to the State Capitol as the ‘Dome of Corruption,’ is always quick to point out when someone doesn’t follow the rules, and she should be held to the same standard. There is a long list of elected officials who have resigned, and in some cases been charged, for having staff members do campaign work during official hours.
“The complaint is not so much about the result as it is about the message: if you are going to accuse others of wrongdoing and ethical violations, you should make sure your own house is in order. The purpose of this complaint is to stick up for the taxpayers of the 44th Senate District; something Sen. Muth struggles to do time and again,” the campaign stated.
Muth was elected to the Senate in 2018 and holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in athletic training. A Royersford resident, she got her start in politics through Indivisible Mid Montco, a progressive grassroots action network.
According to her website, Muth is “focused on helping those struggling to find affordable health care, ensuring equal pay for equal work, promoting a livable wage and paid family medical leave. In addition, the senator is focused on aiding students who are overburdened by heavy student loans.”
Florio served as president of the Honey Brook Borough Council, chair of the Route 322 Transportation Committee, and served as president of the Honey Brook Community Library Board of Trustees.
A teacher for 15 years, Florio has worked as a special education teacher for 12 years.