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UPDATED: Parents of Girl Put on ‘Hit List’ by Classmates Seek Legal Help

The parents of a harassed Northley Middle School student whose name appeared on a “hit list” have lawyered up.

In a strongly worded letter to the Penn-Delco School District, the Dhillon Law Group representing parents Liz Finnegan and Edward Mongelluzzo and their daughter, asked the district to respond by Friday with a plan to keep the girl safe.

“The district purports to value ‘safe and supportive schools; for its students, but for the last year and a half, the district has failed in that responsibility to Ms. emboldening her bullies and leading to an escalation in the threats and harassment she is forced to endure. The district’s feckless response violates not only its own written policies but state and federal law,” the lawyers wrote.

The victim “is currently 14 years old and an eighth grader at Northley Middle School. (She) has dealt with discrimination, bullying, and harassment for much of her time in the Penn-Delco School District. Notably, though, when facing difficulties at Coebourn Elementary School, Coebourns’ administrators quickly investigated and disciplined the students involved when appropriate. Coebourn Elementary School’s thoughtful, proactive, and safety-centered approach to handling these matters stands in stark contrast to what (she) has endured since matriculating at Northley Middle School,” the lawyers wrote.

“When (she) was 10 years old, another student (name redacted) touched (her) in a sexual manner without (her) consent. The details of this situation are well known to the district, as this sexual assault was reported and investigated by the district.”

After the victim reported the sexual assault, the perpetrator and her friends “began a retaliatory campaign to punish (her) for speaking out,” the letter said.

They taunted her and called her sexually explicit names. They also bullied her for her disability.

The victim “reported this harassment to Northley staff, but rather than addressing it, Northley ignored and downplayed the problems, refused to investigate, and allowed these students to continue unabated. Having seen that the harassing students faced no repercussions, the problem escalated to a wider group of the student body.”

Students began making violent threats against the girl and her family and told her to kill herself. The four girls allegedly involved stalked the victim online and used images and videos of her, creating fake social media accounts. They coordinated their cyberbullying through a social media account on Discord.

One of the girl’s adult caretakers made repeated threatening calls to the victim’s cell phone at night.

Recently, the perpetrators set up a “hit list” that mentioned the victim. One student was so alarmed she told her about the hit list, and the victim told her mother, who called the district and the police.

“The district’s failure to address the harassment and threats made against this student is unacceptable,” said Karin Sweigart, attorney at the Dhillon Law Group. “We demand that the district take immediate action to ensure that all students have access to a safe and inclusive learning environment free from discrimination and harassment.”

“Our clients are deeply concerned about their child’s safety and well-being,” Sweigart said. “When schools fail to take allegations of harassment seriously, they are sending a message that this type of behavior is acceptable, and we will not tolerate it.”

The district superintendent disagreed with the contents of the letter.

“The school district has learned that several media outlets have received a copy of a letter from a legal firm in California suggesting that the district and local law enforcement agencies have been dismissive of threats and bullying behaviors towards a student. Those allegations are in stark contrast to the seriousness with which the district has, and will continue to maintain in its responsiveness to threats or reports of bullying behaviors. With student safety as our foremost and primary concern, our code of conduct is to be enforced with fidelity following known claims of bullying or other behaviors that are not tolerated. Additionally, our staff have often partnered and cooperated with other agencies even when events occur outside of school hours or on school grounds if it can lead to safety for anyone and a beneficial outcome,” said Superintendent Dr. George Steinhoff.

Finnegan said, “All we are asking for is for our daughter to have what every child deserves: a safe environment in which to learn. There is no question that a threat exists: It was done in writing, online, and followed years of escalating harassment and abuse. We hate that we have to beg the school to protect her, and we hate that she has been unable to return to school due to the continued threat and continued lack of action in addressing the threat by the school district. We hope this can be treated with the seriousness it deserves and that our daughter can safely return to school.”

A district spokeswoman did not respond to a request for comment.


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PA House Dems Knew About Zabel but Did Nothing, GOP Women Say

When Bucks County Rep. Kristen Marcell first came to the House in Harrisburg, fellow members took her aside and gave her a warning.

Stay away from Mike Zabel.

“As a freshman female member, there were a number of female colleagues who shared with me that I should avoid being around [Zabel] when I first joined the House,” Marcell told DVJournal in a podcast interview Thursday. “I didn’t even know what he looked like at that point or any of the details. I found it very interesting that I was warned about him.”

Today, Marcell knows why. The Delaware County Democrat has been accused by multiple women of unwanted touching and inappropriate behavior.

For weeks, Pennsylvania politics has been roiled by reports of sexual harassment by an unidentified member of the House Democratic caucus. On Wednesday, Broad + Liberty broke the news it was Zabel (D-Drexel Hill), along with a new allegation of inappropriate behavior.

The problem first went public in January when SEIU lobbyist Andi Perez shared the story of a lawmaker she declined to identify who groped her.

“This lawmaker decided to caress my leg — I was wearing a skirt — all the while telling me he was impressed by my passion and knowledge of the issues we were discussing. … I moved away from him, hoping he would stop,“ Perez said at the time. “He did not.”

That lawmaker was Zabel, she later confirmed.

Broad + Liberty also reported the firsthand account of a female state rep who says a drunken Zabel propositioned her and later followed her to her car.

“He [Zabel] came up to me and he couldn’t stop telling me how great I looked. But then he was — he kept putting his arm around me and saying like, ‘Hey, we should get outta here. Like, do you wanna go upstairs with me?’”

On Thursday, GOP House leaders called on Democrats to join them in demanding Zabel’s resignation.

“In 2018, our colleagues on the other side of the aisle said, ‘Anyone accused of a credible violation like this should resign their position.’ Now that a member of their caucus has been credibly accused of multiple and serious incidents of sexual harassment, it would be our hope that Democrats would join us in calling on Rep. Zabel to resign,” GOP leaders said in a statement.

Among the signatories were GOP Caucus Leader Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster), Caucus Secretary Martina White (R-Philadelphia) and Caucus Administrator Sheryl Delozier (R-Cumberland).

“Unfortunately, recent news reports and additional accusations have made it clear that generations of House Democratic leadership have known of Zabel’s actions but chose to ignore and cover up his behavior instead of taking action to protect the women in this capitol,” they added.

“Regardless of who you are or where you work, sexual harassment is never acceptable and cannot be tolerated,” Sen. Tracy Pennycuick (R-Bucks/Montgomery) said. “Better mechanisms must be put in place for victims to file complaints when these incidents occur so that their voices are heard, and ensure that perpetrators are brought to justice. There needs to be a full and thorough investigation and proper action must be taken.” Pennycuick had previously served in the House until being elected to the Senate in 2022.

In a podcast interview with DVJournal, White denounced the decision of Democratic leaders to remain silent about Zabel. She also warned the party’s continued embrace of the Drexel Hill Democrat would leave a stain on their reputation — particularly the new Speaker of the House, Joanna McClinton (D-Philadelphia/Delaware), who has portrayed herself as a champion of social justice.

White said that in January when the Perez story broke, she wrote then-Speaker Mark Rozzi and Democratic Caucus Leader McClinton “asking them to investigate, find out exactly who the member is, hold them accountable and call for their resignation. “Unfortunately, to this day they’ve never responded to that request.”

The reason Democrats haven’t acted, White said, is basic political math. They need every vote to hold their slender 102 to 100 majority.

“This is solely about maintaining power,” White said. “They wanted to make sure Rep. Zabel was on the floor to vote for leader McClinton to become Speaker of the House. It’s a complete disgrace.”

And, she added, “The fact McClinton got there on the back of a sexual harasser is just sad. It’s going to bear out as her legacy.”

Zabel has yet to respond to the allegations.

Asked if she feels safe in the House today, Marcell said no. And she was not the only woman who felt that way.

“At times I don’t feel safe in Harrisburg, knowing that for years, things may have been happening and there wasn’t an avenue for people to report them through the Ethics Committee,” Marcell said. “And from what I’ve heard from a number of females, both women [working in] government affairs as well as female colleagues, there’s really a need for change in Harrisburg.”

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DelVal’s Zabel Outed as Accused State House Groper

After weeks of rumors since lobbyist Andi Perez spoke out about being groped by a Democrat state legislator, she named Rep. Mike Zabel (D-Drexel Hill) as the politician who groped her.

Perez spoke out because House rules did not allow her to complain about Zabel to the ethics committee. Only House members are allowed to, but she hoped that the rules would be changed.  However, after a party-line vote Wednesday, the Democrat-controlled House did not amend the rules to include allegations from outsiders like Perez.

“I am very optimistic that the Speaker and Leadership of the Pennsylvania House are committed to a Rules Package that includes the expansion of protections against sexual harassment. I shared my story with the intent of creating real change in Harrisburg #respectvictims,” Perez said on Twitter, before the vote.

In January, Perez described what had happened to her to then-Speaker Mark Rozzi (D-Berks), who was himself a victim of childhood sexual assault. She did not name Zabel at that time.

The lawmaker “decided to caress my leg while I was wearing a skirt, all the while telling me he was impressed by my passion and knowledge of the issues we were discussing,” Perez said. “I moved away from him hoping he would stop — he did not.”

“I could sit here for hours telling you the range of emotions I felt after this,” she continued. “Of course, I was full of rage at the disrespect and arrogance it requires to so brazenly sexually harass me in a public place where I am just trying to do my job for the workers in my union.”

Now she has called on Zabel to resign.

The Delaware Valley Journal reached out to Zabel for his side of the story, but he declined to respond.

While Zabel’s identity was first reported in the press by Broad + Liberty it was an open secret among legislators, including members of the House Democratic caucus. Once his identity was made public, more women began speaking out.

A state representative told Broad + Liberty about another incident at an event last fall where Zabel allegedly followed her to her car after complimenting her appearance and putting his arm around her.  After she rebuffed him, Zabel tried to get another member to let him come to her hotel room, that House member said.

DelVal pundit Christine Flowers responded to the scandal by saying, “Rep. Mike Zabel deserves the chance to defend himself against accusations that are, as of this moment, unproven.  However, while due process is crucial in these situations, and while the #MeToo movement caused havoc in the lives of many innocent people, I can’t ignore the hypocrisy of the Democrats, who knew about alleged transgressions which were by all accounts an open secret in Harrisburg, and are refusing to do anything to investigate.  You can’t escape the thought that they were trying to hold onto a razor-thin majority by whatever means necessary, which led them to ignore Zabel’s-and their own-predicament.”

Speaker Joanna McClinton (D-Philadelphia/Delaware) has spoken out about survivors.

In an emailed statement Democratic leaders said, “As the leaders of the House Democratic Caucus, we are concerned by the allegations we learned today, and take such accusations seriously. We are committed to creating and maintaining a work environment free from discrimination and harassment.  Today House Democrats stood alone in lifting the veil of secrecy that in the past would have denied survivors their voice. Until today, deficiencies in the House Rules denied anyone other than legislative staff and House members an opportunity to report incidents of harassment or discrimination.

The newly empowered House Ethics Committee will be established on Thursday. The rules passed today include a five-year lookback for accusations to ensure all those who under the previous leadership had no recourse have a pathway to having their voices heard. Everyone deserves to be safe at work and our caucus commends and respects the courage of those who come forward.”

Rep. Kristin Marcell (R-Richboro) called out the Democratic leadership for not including sexual harassment protections for women who come into the House to do business or as guests in the rules they proffered.

“Nobody in this chamber can deny we continue to have a sexual harassment problem in this building, and we need to do something to change the culture in Harrisburg,” Marcell said.  “I was hopeful the majority was going to be genuine in trying to deal with the many situations we have heard formally and informally over the course of the last several weeks.”

The rules presented “are an unfortunate muddying of the waters,” said Marcell.  “Madame Speaker, we have had the opportunity to deal with the real problem affecting who goes on in this building. And there was a lot of rhetoric spilled about standing up for victims of sexual harassment…”

They were told in special session, “Now is not the time,” she said. But they are still waiting “for a solid solution for this real problem of sexual harassment.”

The rules passed on party lines Wednesday 102 to 100. Republican Linda Schlegel-Culver resigned from the House Tuesday to take her seat in the Senate so the Democrats control the House with a two-vote majority.

On his website, Zabel says that he graduated from Temple Law and was an assistant district attorney in Philadelphia. He also holds an undergraduate degree from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Mass., and his master’s degree in classics is from Indiana University Bloomington.

Before law school, Zabel taught Greek and Latin in the middle school of Agnes Irwin, a private girls’ school on the Main Line, from 2003 to 2007, a spokesman for the school confirmed.

He is married with two children.

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MARCELL: More Action Needed to Keep Capitol Safe from Accused Sexual Harasser

As a new member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, I was extremely disappointed to learn that a colleague who is a credibly accused sexual harasser is not being held accountable by House Democrats.

In fact, during last week’s special session, every House Democrat voted against ethics rules that would have put institutional protections in place in the House.

This situation was brought to light as a result of an event recently conducted by Rep. Mark Rozzi (D-Berks), during which a lobbyist alleged a complaint of sexual harassment and expressed her deep concern that there was nowhere for her to go to lodge a complaint. Prior House operating rules only applied when a complaint was made by a member or employee of the House, not by members of the public, lobbyists, or others who interact with House members.

As part of one of the largest freshman classes in recent memory, and now with 61 female members in the House, I joined many of my colleagues in coming to Harrisburg with the goal of working together and getting things done for our constituents. That is why I am so disappointed that we could not collaborate last week to hold members accountable for their misconduct while carrying out their duties in public office.

Though much has been done to help advance women’s safety, especially in the halls of the state Capitol, it is clear more still needs to be done. News reports indicate the harasser’s identity is an open secret and I am dumbfounded that House Democratic Caucus leaders are taking no action to publicly identify and hold accountable their fellow caucus member for these credible accusations.

Not only do I and other female House colleagues I have spoken to feel unsafe, but every woman who enters the building is now at risk of unwanted touching, advances, and comments from this individual. I do not understand why we cannot work together to ensure we advance women’s safety in this, and every workplace. I do not understand why every Democrat House member universally rejected measures to hold sexual harassers accountable.

Since I was sworn in almost a month ago, while we have not been in session, I have learned from my House colleagues about the unfortunate dangers of Harrisburg.

Now in addition to always having someone walk with me while outside of the Capitol complex for safety, I have to worry about a current male House member who is credibly alleged to have assaulted a female lobbyist.

It is past time for Democrats to take such matters seriously and make sure everyone can do their job and have professional interactions with their elected officials safely and without fear.

It is my great hope that when we gavel into the regular legislative session and adopt a set of operating rules under that umbrella, we include these protections and a system for accountability. To do any less would be an egregious failure of the House’s Democratic leadership.

Intolerance for sexual harassers should transcend partisanship and gender – men and women of every political party and partisan belief should all agree that we must hold sexual harassers accountable.

As elected leaders of the Commonwealth, we must set an example for conduct. What message are we sending to our constituents – and to our children – if we allow a known harasser free rein inside the state Capitol? As a mother, what will I say to my daughter if I did not stand up at a moment like this to protect women at risk of sexual harassment?

I urge the House to come together and demand action. Party doesn’t matter here. Respect, decency, and leadership do.


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White Demands Action on House Ethics in Wake of Sexual Harassment Allegation

As it stands now if you are not a member of the legislature you can’t complain to the House ethics panel if a member sexually harasses you. You’re out of luck.

After testimony from lobbyist Andi Perez that she was sexually harassed by a Democratic state representative, Rep. Martina White sent a strongly worded letter Thursday to House Democratic leaders–Speaker Mark Rozzi and Leader Joanna McClinton–demanding action.

“As part of her moving testimony, which highlighted glaring holes in our ethics rules that have historically prohibited non-House employees from filing sexual harassment complaints against a member of the House, Ms. Perez called for reform of the sexual harassment reporting rules to allow anyone sexually harassed by a member of the House to file a complaint with the House Ethics Committee,” White (R-Philadelphia) wrote.

“This lawmaker decided to caress my leg — I was wearing a skirt — all the while telling me he was impressed by my passion and knowledge of the issues we were discussing. … I moved away from him, hoping he would stop,” Perez said. “He did not.”

Perez did not respond to a request for comment.

House Republicans proposed ethics rules for the special session that, among other things, would allow for sexual harassment complaints to be filed by non-House employees. In a speech from the floor Thursday, GOP Leader Rep. Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster) noted all 102 House Democrats voted against it.

Cutler also reminded House Democrats that they overwhelmingly opposed House Resolution 192 last session, a bill to tighten House ethical conduct rules regarding sexual harassment.

“I’m glad we’re having this discussion because I wanted to have it some time ago,” Cutler said of the debate over the proposed ethics rules.

White said action is necessary now to protect staff from the unnamed Democratic House member involved in the alleged harassment and who is part of the Democrats’ 102-101 majority.

“This being the case, it is incumbent on the Speaker’s office—who claimed responsibility for managing House space—and the House Democratic Caucus who, implicated in this matter, to ensure members, staff, and outside visitors to the Capitol are kept safe from this individual who now has a history of sexual harassment.

“As a female member of this House, I encourage both of your offices to engage in an investigation to affirmatively identify this member and take any required remedial action, including seeking their resignation,” White wrote.

McClinton also spoke from the fl6oorfloor, mocking Republicans for what she claimed is a new-found concern about harassment in the House.

“I am so grateful that on this day in history the minority caucus is interested in protecting victims of sexual harassment,” McClinton said. In the past, she said, Republicans, dismissed concerns. “But now that we’re here for special session — suddenly everyone in the minority caucus is interested in handling sexual harassment.”

She also claimed the Pennsylvania State House has “a culture where there is harassment, unfortunately, [that] needs to be addressed.” But, McClinton added, “this is not the time or the moment to do that.”

In a statement to DVJournal, McClinton said, “Everyone deserves to feel safe in their workplace, and no person should be harassed or made to feel uncomfortable in the course of doing their job.

“Unfortunately, despite persistent advocacy for many years by the House Democratic Caucus, the rules that have governed our chamber have not provided a pathway for lobbyists, media, and other credentialed personnel whose business requires engaging with House members to report that they’ve been harassed or experienced discrimination.

“As the first woman House Majority Leader, I can affirm that discrimination or harassment of any kind in our institution will be treated with seriousness and urgency and that the forthcoming House operating rules to govern our chamber will include a fair process for claims of harassment and discrimination for all protected classes,” McClinton said.

The Delaware Valley Journal repeatedly reached out to the House member who sources said had touched Perez. He did not respond.



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ORTITAY: Act Now to Prevent Sexual Harassment by House Members

On Jan. 27 in Philadelphia, during one of the stops of the Speaker’s Workgroup to Move Pennsylvania Forward listening tour, an allegation of sexual harassment was made against a sitting member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

It takes courage to make an allegation like that, particularly in our state Capitol against a lawmaker. I stood with and supported a victim of sexual assault when a worse situation occurred several years ago with a former member. I saw the toll it took. Unfortunately, the culture under the dome in Harrisburg has long been unsettling, even before my arrival. That needs to change. Sexual assault or harassment is something nobody should have to tolerate while doing their job.

We have an opportunity to easily remedy this now in the soon-to-be-voted House regular session rules for the 2023-24 legislative session. Last session, Rep. Kate Klunk authored House Resolution 192, which would have expanded House ethical conduct rules and procedures to sexual harassment complaints made by anyone against a member or officer of the House in circumstances related to their office or employment. Prior rules only applied when the complaint was made by a member or employee of the House.

“Justice for the victims of sexual misconduct.” That was a quote repeated over and over again in our first session week back since November 2022. Ironically, Rep. Klunk was barred from adding language similar to House Resolution 192 to the House special session rules.

As a member of the speaker’s workgroup, I feel it is important to continue to pursue this rule change so that every lawmaker is held accountable for their actions while doing their job no matter the location or with whom they may be working. As was stated in the testimony to the workgroup “harassment is not a partisan issue.”

I highly encourage the speaker and whoever is writing rules for the regular session to include the language from House Resolution 192. It will hold lawmakers accountable through the House ethics process and give both the testifier at the Philadelphia listening tour stop and the accused lawmaker an opportunity for a fair process that can deliver justice.

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Identity of State Rep. Accused of Groping Lobbyist Known Widely in Harrisburg Political Circles

This story first appeared in Broad + Liberty

The identity of a state representative accused of groping a lobbyist for the Service Employees International Union is one of the worst-kept secrets in Harrisburg political circles, yet that member appears to be facing no discipline for the misconduct while Democratic leadership seems content to allow the issue to evaporate without consequence.

If the scandal were to slip into obscurity, it could signify many of the new norms and reforms brought about in the wake of the #MeToo movement have lost vigor — or, that such standards are only likely to be enforced when the political circumstances allow.

Andi Perez, a lobbyist for the SEIU, told House Speaker Mark Rozzi (D) at a listening session in late January that a sitting member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives touched her inappropriately.

“This lawmaker decided to caress my leg — I was wearing a skirt — all the while telling me he was impressed by my passion and knowledge of the issues we were discussing. … I moved away from him, hoping he would stop,“ Perez said. “He did not.”

In her January testimony to Rozzi’s listening tour, Perez did not explain why she was not naming the individual. She and a press representative for the SEIU did not respond to a request for comment for this story.

Broad + Liberty has received at least a dozen tips, many unsolicited, from bipartisan sources, of the identity of the representative. All of the tips identified the same person, who is a Democrat.

Because Broad + Liberty does not have a report from Perez as to the person’s identity, and because no person would put their name behind an accusation of who the alleged groper is, Broad + Liberty is currently declining to name the individual.

However, the number and quality of sources willing to identify the same individual — albeit off the record — easily demonstrates the identity of the alleged groper is well known in the State Capitol.

Yet if that is true, why, after the reckoning brought forward by the #MeToo movement, is an allegation of sexual misconduct allowed to languish? While it might be true that current ethics rules restrict who can file an official complaint, it’s also true that elected officials have been willing to use unofficial channels, like public pressure, any time they see fit to do so.

One former lawmaker believes politics has trumped ethics yet again.

“Having witnessed a few of these kinds of scandals in my time in Harrisburg, I can tell you that if this accused person were a Republican, there would be a full-court press from elected Democrats and from the media to name and oust this person,” said former state representative Becky Corbin, a Republican in Chester County. “But in this particular instance, the only explanation that makes sense for all of the silence is that Democrats can’t afford for this person to be expelled because of their narrow majority,” in the House.

Republicans entered the 2023 legislative year with a two-seat majority, 101-99, in the House of Representatives, but only because of three vacancies in Democratic districts left Democrats short. Once special elections were completed, Democrats correctly believed they could expect the speaker’s gavel.

It was in the uncertainty of that January moment — Democrats eager to begin exercising the power of a forthcoming majority and Republicans eager to forestall the more progressive wing of the Democratic caucus — that both parties cut the deal electing Mark Rozzi as Speaker of the House.

Rozzi’s ascent to the speakership was so unexpected it made national news, as some pundits were cautiously optimistic that the move might signal a new experiment in bipartisan cooperation at a time when partisan distrust feels insurmountable. A Democrat from Berks County, Rozzi pledged to change his affiliation to independent, and promised not to caucus with either party — the first part of that promise Republicans say he reneged on.

court ruling helped cement Feb. 7 as the date for the three special elections that would complete the House membership, and as expected, Democrats won all three, giving them a 102-101 edge.

The expulsion or forced resignation of a Democratic member of the House would likely only extend Rozzi’s time as Speaker, while some Democrats are eager to elect Majority Leader Joanna McClinton (D -Philadelphia/Delaware County), a representative with a decidedly more progressive agenda and constituency.

To reorganize the leadership, Democrats would need perfect unity on the vote to do so, meaning even Rozzi would have to vote to remove himself as Speaker, a move that would not only stunt his new ambitions but would also clearly be a betrayal to the Republicans who helped elect him.

A special election in this particular case would not be without other risks for Democrats. The district of the accused member leans Democratic, but is far from out of reach for Republicans.

Requests for comment to the top four leaders in the Democratic House Caucus — Speaker Rozzi, McClinton, Dem. Whip Jordan Harris, and Dem. Caucus Chairman Dan Miller — were not returned. A request for comment to the office of the accused individual also was not returned.

Whether lawmakers can or should move against a sitting member in the absence of an official ethics inquiry is a layered difficulty, involving not only the obvious ethical considerations, but also issues of due process and political style.

In September 2021, Democratic leadership stripped Rep. Kevin Boyle (D – Philadelphia) of his chairmanship of the House Finance Committee and also of his Capitol access badge for reasons never made clear.

“The move to sideline an elected official of their own party is one that legislative leaders have used sparingly,” Spotlight PA reported. “When it has happened in the past, it’s almost always been used either punitively — to punish a lawmaker who has angered leadership — or because of a personnel issue involving the lawmaker.”

Leadership later restored those privileges to Boyle, but only Broad + Liberty inquired about those developments. The outlets that originally reported on the discipline did not report on how Boyle returned to his party’s good graces, and Democrat leadership remained tight-lipped. At the time, Democrats were not positioned for a majority, and Boyle’s district is also a safe one.

In 2017, Gov. Tom Wolf called for his fellow Democrat Sen. Daylin Leach to step down after a report from the Inquirer alleged improprieties against the senator. Wolf took that step even though an ethics inquiry wouldn’t be launched until 2019.

State Senator Katie Muth (D – Montgomery/Chester) was a driving force behind Leach’s ultimate departure from the senate.

On the day Perez broke her allegation, Muth authored a 20-tweet thread supporting Perez, but also detailing many other past sexual assault scandals in the Capitol, labeling it the “dome of corruption.”

As with the House Democratic leadership, Muth did not respond to questions as to whether she knew the identity of the accused, whether House Democratic leadership had pursued the issue aggressively enough, and if the politics of a one-seat majority might be in the decision-making mix.

Rozzi, meanwhile, called the House back into a special session on Tuesday that will only focus on two bills dealing with the statute of limitations on certain child sex crimes.

The House had been in recess because Republicans and Democrats could not agree to rules for the new session, a political debate that was made all the more difficult by the narrow and shifting majorities.

As Perez noted in her spoken complaint, House ethics rules greatly restrict who can bring an ethics charge against a sitting member. Changing those rules to allow greater flexibility is expected to be debated sometime this year.

However, as the special session got underway Tuesday, Republicans complained that they weren’t given enough of an opportunity to amend the rules of the special session, amendments that might have included the exact kind of ethical changes Perez advocated for in her speech to Rozzi from January.

Perez previously singled out Rep. Kate Klunk (R – York) for her proposals for many of the kinds of ethics changes Perez spoke of.

On Tuesday, Klunk expressed her frustration at not having enough of an opportunity to offer amendments to the rules for the special session.

“So I hope that at some point we will be able to offer amendments to our special session rules, in addition to House rules when we get back into regular session, that include language on sexual harassment, because there are victims out there and we need to protect folks who come and interact with us,” on a daily basis, Klunk said Tuesday.