Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Ray for County Executive

In the new committees (below) Bill Ray has started one to run for St. Louis County Executive as a Democrat.  He’d be joining incumbent Steve Stenger and businessman Mark Mantovani.  From Ray’s LinkedIn… Missouri Outreach Manager for Small Business Majority; Commissioner on Tax Increment Finance (TIF) Commission for St. Louis County; Chairman of Berkeley Economic Development Sales Tax Commission; Board Member of North County Incorporated….


Driving the Day

All eyes on Alabama tonight as Dems try to steal a Senate seat from the deep red state.

And Sen. Gary Romine will pre-file a bill dealing with the State Board of Education.  This will be one of the hot spots between the Republican majority Senate and the Republican governor.


Q&A#1:  Does Alabama Mean Anything?

Short answer:  I don’t think the actual outcome is that important.


It’s the process that the nation has gone through during this campaign which may have a lasting impact.  This feels like cultural war shaping up.

And like many cultural wars, it wouldn’t surprise me if there’s a generational divide with younger Americans unwilling to give a pass to the creepies.  And older Americans – like the president and some Trump Republicans – willing to discredit, blame, or ignore a pile of evidence.

To me it feels like a political mistake (putting aside the morality of the issue) for them to deny the credibility of a half-dozen women willing to come forward go on the record.


Greitens Acts on Vet Home Saga

It took former Rep. Rick Stream and columns by Post-Dispatch’s Tony Messenger banging pots and pans about the conditions at the St. Louis Veterans Home, but Governor Eric Greitens moved decisively yesterday.  He quickly stacked five appointments into the Missouri Veterans Commission, and called for leadership change of the Home. See the Post article here.


When asked afterwards about the secret texting app he and other folks in the governor’s office use which make retaining public records problematic, Greitens had gave no answer, instead calling it a liberal media attack.


Cierpiot Files Roofing Bill

Sen. Mike Cierpiot pre-filed a bill for roofing contractors to voluntarily register with the Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration. It’s SB 790. See it here.

The aim is to protect customers without a burdensome regulatory licensing process.  From a regulatory standpoint this is much less intrusive than last year’s electrical licensing bill which sought to supersede local ordinances on the subject.


Proudie Fundy Tonight

Raychel Proudie will hold a fundraiser tonight.  She’s running in House 73.  This is Rep. Courtney Curtis’ district.  The interesting thing is that her host committee includes Rep. Doug Beck, a member of Plumbers and Pipefitters #562.  One would expect that he’d be supporting Lee Smith – also running for the seat – who is a retired member of the 562 Local.


More on HB 1273

Over the weekend I polled pre-filed HB 1273 which “grants authority to the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority to issue loans to refinance certain public or private student loans.”  The respondents supported the idea (44% to 25%).

But those with an understanding of MOHELA, and the debt market are less enthusiastic.

For starters, MOHELA already has the ability to refinance both public and private student loans.

However, it’s made a conscious decision to stay away from originating that type of loan because they tend to be risky and expensive to the underwriter.  That’s because so much of the student loan population is over-leveraged.  The exception would be to focus on the sliver of the market with super high credit scores and high income.  But those folks can already refinance their loans at competitive rates.

In other words, regardless of whether HB 1273 becomes law, don’t hold your breath waiting for MOHELA to enter this market.



Thomas Neill was elected to the Appellate Judicial Commission for a term commencing January 1, 2018.  The term of the present Eastern District attorney member, Thomas Burke, expires December 31, 2017.  Neill beat Molly Jones by a little over 200 votes in a run-off. The Appellate Judicial Commission selects “panels” for judicial vacancies on the Missouri Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court of Missouri.


Treasurer Eric Schmitt confirms the rumor that the MOSERS board has started a national search for an executive director as John Watson’s contract is ending next year. Listen to his interview with the mighty Jason Rosenbaum here.


Governor Eric Greitens appointed George Lysinger as Saint Claire County Assessor, and Keat Catlett as Cooper County Clerk.


New Committees

William Ray formed a candidate committee (Bill Ray For St Louis County) to run for St. Louis County Executive as a Democrat.  His treasurer is Jonathan Boesch.

Missouri State Assessors Association PAC was formed.  Former Rep. Scott Largent is the treasurer.

Kyle Cubbert formed a candidate committee (Friends Of Kyle Dubbert For County Clerk) to run for Franklin County Clerk as a Republican.

Hillary Shields formed a candidate committee (Shields For State Senate) to run for Senate 8 as a Democrat.


Help Wanted

Axiom Strategies has a half-dozen openings… Copywriter, Creative Director, Digital Account Manager, Digital Strategist, Direct Marketing Coordinator, and Graphic Designer.  See the details here.


Lobbyists Registrations

Jeffrey Altmann added Missouri Roofers Association.

Heidi Geisbuhler added Missouri State Medical Association.

Maggie Garrett deleted Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Barry Goldwater Jr. deleted The Alliance for Solar Choice.

Rachel Bensimon deleted Planned Parenthood Action Fund.


$5K+ Contributions

Local 41 Political Action Fund - $16,059 from DRIVE Committee.

Missouri Democratic State Committee - $7,500 from Taxpayer in Support of Public Education.

STL for Mantovani - $7,500 from Schlichter Bogard & Denton.



Happy birthdays to Noel Torpey, Sal Martinez, Chris Girouard, and Celeste Rueter.