Toomey, Sestak and the Chocolate Factory

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Takeaway Washington correspondent Todd Zwillich went to his hometown, Hershey, in Dauphin County, Penn. — home of America's most famous chocolate factory. He asked union members of Chocolate Workers Local 464 — Hershey Chocolate Plant, which has faced job losses over the last several years, about which candidate, Republican Pat Toomey or Democrat Joe Sestak, they'll be supporting this November.


Todd Zwillich

Comments [2]


Todd Zwillich’s visit to an affluent Pennsylvania locale that remains relatively unscathed by plummeting property values and rampant job loss presents a peculiar, perhaps too cute attempt to wedge a good journalistic hunch into a setting that is, at best, awkwardly suited his story.

To be sure, Republican efforts to conflate Sestak with Obama have won adherents among select voters, and while resentment over Hillary’s defeat may faintly glimmer in the waning twilight of elections past, such a sentiment hardly presents a compelling impetus to vote for either candidate. Many of those in the employ of Hershey Foods openly proclaim to be disaffected by the perceived narrowness of party politics at large, but they are also generally supportive of the president’s policies to date. The discourse among union members can be as variegated and nuanced as it can be heated.

To be sure, if the upcoming election is to be cast as a referendum—as the media has forebodingly preordained—Hershey’s population of doctors, executives and skilled laborers are a heterogeneous assembly of disinterested political animals whose scattered demographic profile is not likely to accurately reflect the prevailing national or, for that matter, commonwealth-wide mood.

As a purported erstwhile denizen of Hershey, Zwillich is no doubt acutely aware that he has portrayed only part of the story. He also understands that examples better suited to his premise—be they businesses, towns, or individuals—readily exist throughout Dauphin County.

Oct. 22 2010 02:30 AM
Alfred Jeffries from Lowell MA

Hershey! Try staring in Brownsville and working your way down the Mon Valley past California, Charleroi, Monessen, Belle Vernon, Donora, Monongahela, Elizabeth, Dravosburg, Braddock, & Mckeesport and see what you get.

Oct. 21 2010 03:25 PM

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