Wolf says he’s ready for fiscal, political challenges

     As his third year in office begins, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf faces some tall fiscal challenges and looming challengers to his re-election in 2018.(Emma Lee/WHYY)

    As his third year in office begins, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf faces some tall fiscal challenges and looming challengers to his re-election in 2018.(Emma Lee/WHYY)

    Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf enters the second half of his term in office facing some tall fiscal challenges — and looming challengers to his re-election in 2018.

    Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf enters the second half of his term in office facing some tall fiscal challenges — and looming challengers to his re-election in 2018.

    The state’s independent fiscal office predicts a budget deficit in the current fiscal year of more than $500 million, and a shortfall in the coming budget year of as much as $1.7 billion.

    Republican state Sen. Scott Wagner of York County has already declared his intention to run in the 2018 Republican primary, and other GOP heavyweights are considering their options.

    In an interview at our studio, Wolf told WHYY’s senior reporter Dave Davies he’s made historic gains in education funding, and will fill the gaping holes in the state budget without broad-based tax increases.

    And he said any Republican lawmakers who seek to torpedo his agenda in order to boost their own candidacies risk a backlash from voters.

    “If they believe somebody in the Legislature has consciously tried to undermine the working of the government, for whatever reason, I don’t think they’re going to give that candidate much credit for that,” Wolf said.

    You can hear our interview with the governor by playing the audio above.

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