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Corbett visits Punxsutawney for Groundhog Day

February 1, 2012

Photo by Tom Chapin - Inner Circle Vice-President Bill Deeley (far left) officially makes Gov. Tom Corbett (far right) an honoray member of the Groundhog Club Inner Circle while Vice President Mike Johnston (center) looks on Wednesday night at the annual Groundhog Banquet at Punxsutawney Area High School.

PUNXSUTAWNEY — Despite being born in the Philadelphia area, Gov. Tom Corbett insists he is a western Pennsylvania man by heart who has observed Groundhog Day since he was a child.
"When I was young, we had only three TV stations, and one of them we couldn't get — not in North Hills," said Corbett, the second sitting Pennsylvania governor to attend Groundhog Day. "We always hope for more winter and snow so we could play outside."
He also had a message for Inner Circle President Bill Deeley, who receives Punxsutawney Phil's prognostication in "groundhogese" and translates it for the crowd: "Don't screw up winter. After flooding this past year, I like not having to salt the roads this year."
In introducing Corbett, state House Speaker Sam Smith, of Punxsutawney, described the Inner Circle as "a well-oiled machine, as long as that machine is oiled with beer," to which Corbett ordered to both Smith and state Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati, "'A well-oiled machine. Get the beer."

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