As the state’s lieutenant governor, Fetterman was the chairman of the state’s parole board, where he was often the sole vote to release violent criminals from their sentences. Since taking office in 2019, Fetterman never missed a Board of Pardons convening and Fetterman has made clear how he feels about pardons and parole.
“John Fetterman’s TOP PRIORITY is releasing murderers from prison.
Fetterman: If I had a magic wand to “fix one thing,” I would end “life without parole” for murderers. pic.twitter.com/waBsf2me22“
— Republican Women of Mercer County 💪🇺🇸 (@RWOMC) September 19, 2022
While Fetterman has never missed a Board of Pardons powwow, he can’t say the same of his attendance record for state Senate sessions, even though he was supposed to preside over them.
A review of Senate session journals and video feeds shows Fetterman presided over the state Senate 131 days out of the 196 days the legislature was in session from January 2019 to July 2022, reported Fox News. This year alone, Fetterman has only attended 44% of the legislative chamber’s sessions.
Joe Calvello, a spokesman for Fetterman’s campaign, claimed the Democrat “takes his constitutional duty serving as president of the Pennsylvania Senate incredibly seriously,” and that he is “proud of his record as mayor of Braddock” – a reference to reports about Fetterman’s equally concerning attendance record when he was the mayor of Braddock, Pennsylvania.
Calvello blamed Fetterman’s frequent absences on the COVID-19 pandemic.
“During the spring of 2020, beginning in March, much of the commonwealth, including John’s home county of Allegheny, and Dauphin, the county where the state Capitol is located, were under restrictive red and yellow phases to stop the spread of COVID-19,” he said in a statement. “After Allegheny County and Dauphin County returned to green phase status on June 19, Fetterman returned to presiding.”
While Fetterman was the mayor of Braddock, he missed at least 53 city council meetings during his 13-year tenure. Calvello again dismissed these numbers as irrelevant, and claimed Fetterman’s absences were the result of a disagreement with the council.
“Unfortunately, for much of his tenure, John’s efforts to revitalize Braddock were resisted by the Borough Council who made clear they had no intention of working with him,” he claimed.