Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Statewide Conservative Monthly Starting In Johnstown

Statewide Conservative Monthly Starting In Johnstown

By: Jim McCaffrey , The Bulletin


Philadelphia - Johnstown Publisher Chris Voccio quit his job and invested his pension so he could promote the conservative cause in a new monthly publication launching in December.

Mr. Voccio resigned as the publisher of the Johnstown Tribune-Democrat in September.
Since then he has focused his energies on establishing a Web site, PennRepublican.com, and creating a monthly newspaper The Pennsylvania Republican.
He promises the paper will "[promote] the ideas of limited government, lower taxes, less government regulation, and the general idea of liberty."
Mr. Voccio recently explained he started the paper because he considers himself an "entrepreneurial guy."
"I have started numerous publications working for other people," he recalled. "This is a big risk. I should know within a month or two if this is going to work. I just saw a political opportunity and saw that if I was going to do this I would have to do this now."
Mr. Voccio concedes his being single made it easier to pull the trigger on his decision.
His goal is to launch the new publication with 900 subscribers. He hopes to find those subscriptions though his Web site www.PennRepublican.com.
If his business model works new subscriptions will have him breaking even in two years and reach his circulation goal of 20,000 by 2010.
"If at any point I am very much below my circulation goals it will not be good," he concedes.
Subscriptions are $35 per year and 3-year charter subscriptions are available for $69.90. The paper will be supported with circulation numbers, not advertising.
Topics will include both national and state events including the Commonwealth Foundation's take on the tolling of I-80, the Grove City College perspective on free trade versus protectionism, and sorting out the Republican presidential candidates.
Asked to give other examples of the kind of state issues his paper would tackle, Mr. Voccio chose transportation.
"SEPTA is an abomination tying it to the toll road on I-80," he declared. "We have to look at the whole system. We should not just look at how we're going to fund it but we need to look at if it needs to be funded at all. People where I live in Carbon County should not be funding SEPTA. People in Philadelphia shouldn't be funding transportation in Carbon County."
Mr. Voccio admitted he considered a monthly magazine rather than a newspaper but rejected the idea as unaffordable.
Instead he'll focus on his audience and his mission.
"This effort is hopefully going to engage and reenergize the conservative movement in the state," he said. "We want to transform the state Republican Party into a clear-cut conservative party. We want to unify that powerful voice."
Unity doesn't seem to be a strong point with either the national or state Republican Party this year.
Mr. Voccio claims a generation ago Democrat agents managed to sneak in under the Republican tent. He believes these Democrats have made the party over into one that rejects traditional Republican values in favor of internationalist views.


©The Evening Bulletin 2007

Source: http://www.thebulletin.us/site/news.cfm?newsid=18945714&BRD=2737&PAG=461&dept_id=618959&rfi=6

Related link: http://pennrepublican.com/2007/11/13/pennsylvania-republican-offers-sneak-peak/


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