Fitz Named Treasurer
Governor Mike Parson announced that he was appointing House Budget Chair Scott Fitzpatrick as the new State Treasurer. Fitzpatrick fills the vacancy created when Eric Schmitt was appointed to the attorney general spot, after Josh Hawley defeated Claire McCaskill for US Senate. See the Post-Dispatch coverage here. “Fitzpatrick’s pending appointment means that only two of Missouri’s statewide elected officers — Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft, a Republican, and Auditor Nicole Galloway, a Democrat — were chosen to do their jobs by voters.”
The Next Domino – House Budget Chair
Talk immediately shifted to the prospects for filling the Budget Chair position. Rep. Cody Smith was named vice-chair earlier this year, setting him up to take over AFTER Fitz was termed in 2020. The consensus among Budget watchers I spoke to is that Smith is still the favorite for the job. But other names mentioned are: David Wood, Robert Ross and Kathy Swan.
Here’s one insider: “Smith probably gets the nod to replace Fitzpatrick [but Wood’s] experience will make Elijah Haahr’s decision tougher than most realize.”
But another building denizen lobbyist argues that Haahr has to stick by Smith… “If a starting quarterback on a college football team gets hurt, you never see a coach switch a senior wide receiver to quarterback because they have a good arm and have more experience in games. The coach always plays the second-string quarterback because it destroys the confidence of a team if you train someone as a backup and then don’t use them when duty calls. Cody was put into the role as vice chair for a reason, and he should be called up, even if it is earlier than expected. He’s overly nice to work with, but extremely methodical and effective in executing his agenda. With a huge freshmen class, Elijah could weaken the perception of every vice chair if he doesn’t have the confidence to promote Cody to Budget Chair…”
Stepping back to look at the budget process we’re starting, one reader notes that we’re have new leaders in the top budget posts. “The House will have a new chair and at least four of five subcommittee chairs will be first-timers. The Senate will have a new chair, and no Jeannie Walton for support.”
From the Senate side, there’s a sense that budget negotiations will be easier without a Fitzy staring at them across the table… “It’s a good day for [Senate Appropriations Chair] Dan Hegeman (and the Senate) in any case…”
Arnold to Travelers
Word is that Justin Arnold, general counsel for the Missouri Chamber, will be leaving that post. He’s been hired away by Travelers to be a Vice President of Government Relations, where he’ll handle the Midwest region, including Missouri.
Arnold’s exit to a Fortune 500 company, reinforces the Chamber’s reputation as an incubator for talent. Because they enter the fray on a lot of high profile issues, their staff draws the attention of large employers. Now it looks like there’s on the hunt for a new general counsel with session starting in three weeks
Greitens Political Non-Profit Raised $6M in Dark Money
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington reported on the first 990 filing from A New Missouri, the political non-profit established to support Eric Greitens. See it here.
They published the filing here online.
I think the banger of the story comes in the last paragraph… “[Michael] Hafner had previously testified to the Missouri House’s special investigative committee about the Greitens campaign’s early plans to use nonprofits to conceal donor identities. Hafner’s testimony included a description of conversations he had with a wealthy Greitens supporter named Monu Joseph who Hafner said ‘wanted to know if there were avenues set up where, that were nonprofits or c4s, that they could bring money in and not disclose the source of those contributions.’ On the tax return Joseph is listed as A New Missouri’s president.”
The Missouri Ethics Commission fined Joe Frese who ran as a Democrat in House 5, for exceeding campaign contribution limits. See it here.
MEC also fined Greene County Commissioner Robert Cirtin for campaign violations related to Invest in Green County PAC. See it here.
Press release: Zel M. Fischer, chief justice of the Supreme Court of Missouri and chair of the Appellate Judicial Commission, announces the commission today submitted to Governor Michael L. Parson its panel of nominees to fill the vacancy on the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District. This vacancy exists due to the August 2018 retirement of Judge Lisa Van Amburg. The commission unanimously supports the three nominees. After approximately six hours of public interviews, approximately 2.5 hours of deliberations and five rounds of balloting, the nominees are Michael E. Gardner, Robin Ransom and John P. Torbitzky.
Eapen Thampy writes on his blog (see it here) that Rep-elect Ron Hicks and Rep. Barbara Washington have filed expungement legislation which would “expunge marijuana offenses.”
City tongues were clucking as news spread yesterday that Debra Carnahan, wife of former Congressman Russ Carnahan, filed to run for St. Louis City Alderman, Ward 6….
eMailbag: Readers Duel on Parson’s Female Input
From where I sit Kayla Hahn and Julie Baker are both top notch…
Enterprise Holdings seeks Government & Public Affairs Analyst. “Enterprise Holdings is excited to announce a new opportunity for a Government and Public Affairs Analyst. The ideal candidate for this exciting opportunity has a strong interest in government and public policy; and has direct experience working with, or in, government… The Government and Public Affairs Analyst supports the department by researching and analyzing legislation and other public policy sources. This position will be responsible for developing policy position papers and messaging tools and facilitating communication of policy issues between the Corporate Government Affairs team and the operating groups. This position will also work with state teams to assist them with their advocacy effects….” See it here.
Satia Hutton formed a candidate committee ( Sunni Hutton For Ward 20) to run for St. Louis City Alderman, Ward 20, as a Democrat.
FHSD Strong was formed. It’s a PAC. Its treasurer is Dale Dickmann.
Stand Up Missouri - $9,500 from World Acceptance Corporation.
Happy birthdays to Bob Jacobi, Bart Korman, Ellen Sherberg, Melissa DeStefano Furey, Dan Bryar, and Ben Murray.
MOScout Holiday Schedule
I’m working tomorrow morning. You’ll get Update and Weekly Summary. But then I’m taking off for a while. No Weekender, and nothing Monday or Tuesday. Be back Wednesday. Next week, we’ll do the always-popular “End of Year Reader Polls.” And I’m planning a similar half week for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.
What do I want for Christmas? I want a lot of tips, rumors and interesting insights. Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org, or text 314-255-5210.