November 8, 2017

Q&A #1: Who Won the Night?


Sen-elect Mike Cierpiot – It’s been a long and winding road to the other side of the building.  It started while his rivals were sleeping.  Cierpiot went and worked the district committee early in the year in preparation for a possible Kraus appointment.


Missouri Senate Campaign Committee – The MCSS raised some big money and swopped in for the kill.  This is model we expect to see in the post-Amendment 2 world: a third-party that can accept large checks running large portions of the campaign.


Pro Tem Ron Richard – The election of Cierpiot prevents the addition of another potential Democratic mischief-maker.  Since he’s had his hands full with his own caucus in past sessions, that’s a relief.


Stan Herzog – The opponents of a tax increase to fund St. Joseph School District romped to victory as the measure went down with 72% voting against.  The superintendent says $7.5 million will need to be cut from the budget.  See NewsPress coverage here.


Mayor Lyda Krewson – Just a little more than six months ago Krewson won a fractious mayoral primary with a 32% of the vote.  Hardly enough to call it a mandate.  The Stockley verdict and aftermath have provided a backdrop of tension that she carefully avoided stoking.  Her rival Tishaura Jones (who took 30% in that primary) campaigning against Prop P.  So the 59% passage gives Krewson her first big win – and depending how the money is ultimately spent a chance to make wider common ground between the police and the protesters.


Kansas City – I’d never heard so much grumbling about the airport until this issue came up.  Despite the questionable process to pick a contractor, the city moves forward to update their airport.



Boone County voters rejected all four local use tax proposals – countywide and in Columbia, Harrisburg and Ashland.

Countywide Prop U failed by 9.38 percentage points, 45.31% Yes to 54.69% No.

City of Columbia Prop 1 had a closer margin - 1.56 percentage points, 49.22% Yes to 50.78% No.


Q&A # 2: How’s the Floor Leader Race Look?

Short answer: TIGHT!


With the election victory of Sen-elect Mike Cierpiot, the House is poised to elect a new floor leader.  They’ll hold the election on Monday (November 13).

Folks supporting both Reps. Kirk Mathews and Rob Vescovo tell me that they are confident their side has the votes to win.

From folks are watching this closely, but don’t have a dog in the fight (as far as I can tell)…

Source 1: “It’s damn tight.  I don’t think Vescovo has ever relinquished the lead, but a few liars or late swings could shift it to Mathews… Amazing”

Source 2: “Gun to head [I’d pick] Vescoco [to win]… but…”

In other words, despite the confidence from the two camps, those not one a side are not confident at all in an outcome.  This is a real race.

Remember: Secret balloting means no one knows for sure how absolute air-tight their “commitments” are.


From the Opioid Front: St. Louis County

St. Louis County Public Health Department released a report on prescription drugs.  See it here.

Post Dispatch reports “There are more than 1.5 prescriptions for controlled substances for every person in St. Louis County, according to the first report from the county's new prescription drug monitoring program…Lincoln County residents have the highest rates of controlled substance use, with more than two prescriptions for every resident. St. Louis city is on the lower end, with 1.2 prescriptions per resident.

Opioid painkillers such as OxyContin or Percocet make up 40 percent, or a majority of the prescriptions for controlled substances, according to the report. Women are prescribed painkillers more often than men, and people 65 and older have the highest rates among all age groups….”


Wright in House 116

Daily Journal Online reportsFarmington businessman Dale Wright has announced his candidacy for the 116th District seat in the Missouri House of Representatives currently held by Rep. Kevin Engler, who will be completing his final term due to term limits in December 2018…

Wright is a past vice president of Health Services Corporation of America, a healthcare consulting company based in Cape Girardeau. He previously served as executive vice president of Ni-Med Inc. — a medical device manufacturer — where he served as the driving force to move corporate operations from St. Louis to Farmington Industrial Park….


Barnes: No Endorsement

On Facebook Rep. Jay Barnes: To be clear and public: I have not and have no intention of endorsing anyone in any legislative election in 2018. Voters can and should decide things for themselves… I will, of course, have private opinions, but I'm not going to publicly opine on candidates - and my silence should not be seen as a "dis-endorsement" either. I'd prefer to use the last 14 months of my service to focus on ideas and policy - not politics.


Today’s Events

From Mary Scruggs’ indispensable calendar:

Rep. Gretchen Bangert Reception – Hendel’s Market, 599 St. Denis St. – Florissant – 5PM.

Sen. Jacob Hummel Reception – Henry Miller Museum, 2726 MLK Dr. – St. Louis – 6PM.


Lobbyists Registrations

Dianne Bricker deleted America’s Health Insurance Plans.

Kaycee Nail, Scott Penman, and David Winton deleted Missouri Occupational Therapy Association.


$5K+ Contributions

Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $20,000 from Smithfield Foods Inc.

Missouri Senate Campaign Committee - $10,000 from Anheuser Busch Companies.



Happy birthdays to Catherine Hanaway, Ellie Glenn, Ed Bushmeyer, and former Reps. Steven Webb and Tony George.